Tag: Decision

Single Judge Application; section 311 meant in 1981; CUE; presumption of soundness; The appellant argues that the Board erred in its determination that no CUE existed in the 1981 RO decision. Specifically, he contends that Wagner is an authoritative statement of what section 311 meant at the time of the 1981 RO decision. Appellant’s Brief (Br.) at 6. The Court agrees with the appellant that the Federal Circuit’s interpretation of section 1111 in Wagner is an authoritative statement of what that statute has meant since the date of enactment in 1958. See Rivers v. Roadway Express, 511 U.S. 298, 312-13 (1994) (“A judicial construction of a statute is an authoritative statement of what the statute meant before as well as after the decision of the case giving rise to that construction.”); Patrick v. Shinseki, 668 F.3d at 1325, 1329 (Fed. Cir. 2011) (“We made clear . . . , that ‘[u]nlike changes in regulations and statutes, which are prospective, our interpretation of a statute is retrospective in that it explains what the statute has meant since the date of enactment.’” (quoting Patrick v. Nicholson, 242 F. App’x 695, 698 (Fed. Cir. 2007)(remanding for further consideration of CUE request using the correct standard articulated in Wagner and directing remand to Board, if necessary, to determine whether the Secretary has rebutted the presumption of soundness by providing clear and unmistakable evidence that the presumption has been rebutted))); see also Jordan v. Nicholson, 401 F.3d 1296, 1298 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (noting that the appellant’s CUE request challenges the validity of a regulation but does not question the correct legal standard under the statute, and that “Wagner governs that issue”). Thus, the Court agrees with the appellant that the Board erred when it concluded that he could not challenge the correct legal standard that applies under section 1111 in the CUE context.;

Single Judge Application; section 311 meant in 1981; CUE; presumption of soundness; The appellant argues that the Board erred in its determination that no CUE existed in the 1981 RO decision. Specifically, he contends that Wagner is an authoritative statement of what section 311 meant at the time of the 1981 RO decision. Appellant’s Brief (Br.) at 6. The Court agrees with the appellant that the Federal Circuit’s interpretation of section 1111 in Wagner is an authoritative statement of what that statute has meant since the date of enactment in 1958. See Rivers v. Roadway Express, 511 U.S. 298, 312-13 (1994) (“A judicial construction of a statute is an authoritative statement of what the statute meant before as well as after the decision of the case giving rise to that construction.”); Patrick v. Shinseki, 668 F.3d at 1325, 1329 (Fed. Cir. 2011) (“We made clear . . . , that ‘[u]nlike changes in regulations and statutes, which are prospective, our interpretation of a statute is retrospective in that it explains what the statute has meant since the date of enactment.’” (quoting Patrick v. Nicholson, 242 F. App’x 695, 698 (Fed. Cir. 2007)(remanding for further consideration of CUE request using the correct standard articulated in Wagner and directing remand to Board, if necessary, to determine whether the Secretary has rebutted the presumption of soundness by providing clear and unmistakable evidence that the presumption has been rebutted))); see also Jordan v. Nicholson, 401 F.3d 1296, 1298 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (noting that the appellant’s CUE request challenges the validity of a regulation but does not question the correct legal standard under the statute, and that “Wagner governs that issue”). Thus, the Court agrees with the appellant that the Board erred when it concluded that he could not challenge the correct legal standard that applies under section 1111 in the CUE context.;

Single Judge Application; section 311 meant in 1981; CUE; presumption of soundness; The appellant argues that the Board erred in its determination that no CUE existed in the ...

Single Judge Application; reason and bases; Dela Cruz v. Principi, 15 Vet.App. 143, 149 (2001); failure discuss all the evidence favorable to a claimant; Gabrielson v. Brown, 7 Vet.App. 36, 40 (1994); the Board cannot “evade [its] statutory responsibility [to state the reasons or bases for its conclusions] merely by adopting [a medical opinion] as its own” where the medical opinion “fails to discuss all the evidence which appears to support [the] appellant’s position.” Gabrielson v. Brown, 7 Vet.App. 36, 40 (1994). Gabrielson does not require that a medical opinion discuss all the evidence favorable to a claimant, only that the Board, in relying on an opinion that does not do so, discuss any additional favorable evidence to comply with its duty to provide an adequate statement of reasons or bases for its decision. See id.; 38 U.S.C. § 7104(d)(1); see also Dela Cruz v. Principi, 15 Vet.App. 143, 149 (2001) (holding that, although the Board must consider all of the evidence of record, “a discussion of all evidence is not required when . . . the Board has supported its decision with thorough reasons or bases regarding the relevant evidence”);
FedCir; Regents is an application of the APA’s “arbitrary, capricious” standard of review, 5 U.S.C. § 706(2)(A), and this case is governed by 38 U.S.C. § 7261(a)(3)(A), which uses the same “arbitrary, capricious” language; we have used APA jurisprudence in applying the Title 38 provision. See Euzebio v. McDonough, 989 F.3d 1305, 1322–23 (Fed. Cir. 2021) (“The Veterans Court must also review Board and VA determinations for ‘abuse of discretion’ and ‘arbitrary [and] capricious’ decision making, including whether the Board or VA[] entirely failed to consider an important aspect of the problem . . . .” (quoting 38 U.S.C. § 7261(a)(3)(A) and State Farm, 463 U.S. at 43)); see also Henderson ex rel. Henderson v. Shinseki, 562 U.S. 428, 432 n.2 (2011) (“[T]he Veterans Court’s scope of review, § 7261, is similar to that of an Article III court reviewing agency action under the [APA] . . . .”); Whether an agency has failed to address an important aspect of a problem, and is arbitrary and capricious for that reason, can turn on the specific statutes and regulations that govern the agency, see Oregon Natural Re-sources Council v. Thomas, 92 F.3d 792, 798 (9th Cir.1996), but that does not distinguish 38 U.S.C. § 7261 from 5 U.S.C. § 706;

FedCir; Regents is an application of the APA’s “arbitrary, capricious” standard of review, 5 U.S.C. § 706(2)(A), and this case is governed by 38 U.S.C. § 7261(a)(3)(A), which uses the same “arbitrary, capricious” language; we have used APA jurisprudence in applying the Title 38 provision. See Euzebio v. McDonough, 989 F.3d 1305, 1322–23 (Fed. Cir. 2021) (“The Veterans Court must also review Board and VA determinations for ‘abuse of discretion’ and ‘arbitrary [and] capricious’ decision making, including whether the Board or VA[] entirely failed to consider an important aspect of the problem . . . .” (quoting 38 U.S.C. § 7261(a)(3)(A) and State Farm, 463 U.S. at 43)); see also Henderson ex rel. Henderson v. Shinseki, 562 U.S. 428, 432 n.2 (2011) (“[T]he Veterans Court’s scope of review, § 7261, is similar to that of an Article III court reviewing agency action under the [APA] . . . .”); Whether an agency has failed to address an important aspect of a problem, and is arbitrary and capricious for that reason, can turn on the specific statutes and regulations that govern the agency, see Oregon Natural Re-sources Council v. Thomas, 92 F.3d 792, 798 (9th Cir.1996), but that does not distinguish 38 U.S.C. § 7261 from 5 U.S.C. § 706;

FedCir; Regents is an application of the APA’s “arbitrary, capricious” standard of review, 5 U.S.C. § 706(2)(A), and this case is governed by 38 U.S.C. § 7261(a)(3)(A), which ...

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