Bowers v. Shinseki, 748 F.3d 1351 (Apr. 17, 2014)
ALS, VETERAN STATUS, 38 C.F.R. § 3.318
An individual must meet VA’s definition of “veteran” before being entitled to the presumption of service connection for ALS under 38 C.F.R. § 3.318.
This case affirms the CAVC’s decision that determined that the claimant was not a “veteran,” as defined by statute, and therefore was not entitled to the presumption of service connection for ALS. The claimant served in the Army National Guard from 1972 to 1978, with a continuous period of active duty for training from August 1972 to February 1973. VA regulation provides for service connection for ALS for individuals with “active military, naval, or air service.” The Federal Circuit found that the CAVC’s interpretation of the regulation was consistent with the statutory scheme, and that the claimant was not entitled to the presumption of service connection based on his service.