Vets disability benefits: Law schools curb backlog

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By BROCK VERGAKIS, Associated Press

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Legal clinics run by law schools are being touted as a possible way to help reduce the significant backlog of veterans' disability benefits claims in the country.

The Veterans Administration has said that of the nearly 900,000 claims pending in its system, some 250,000 are from veterans who have been waiting at least a year for a decision.

At the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, a clinic staffed with students working for free has helped dozens of veterans submit hundreds of claims over the past four years. The school has written a guide for other schools that may be interested in starting similar clinics.

On Thursday, Democratic U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire and others introduced a bill allowing the VA to provide funding for such clinics.

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