Link to original post
United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
CHRISTINA MERRITT, SUBSTITUTED FOR
DOUGLAS A. MERRITT,
ROBERT WILKIE, SECRETARY OF VETERANS
Appeal from the United States Court of Appeals for
Veterans Claims in No. 17-898, Senior Judge Robert N. Davis.
Decided: July 17, 2020
KENNETH M. CARPENTER, Law Offices of Carpenter
Chartered, Topeka, KS, argued for claimant-appellant.
SEAN LYNDEN KING, Commercial Litigation Branch,
Civil Division, United States Department of Justice, Washington,
DC, argued for respondent-appellee. Also represented
by ETHAN P. DAVIS, MARTIN F. HOCKEY, JR., ROBERT
EDWARD KIRSCHMAN, JR., REBECCA SARAH KRUSER;
CHRISTINA LYNN GREGG, BRIAN D. GRIFFIN, Office of
Case: 19-1095 Document: 58 Page: 1 Filed: 07/17/2020
2 MERRITT v. WILKIE
General Counsel, United States Department of Veterans
Affairs, Washington, DC.
Before PROST, Chief Judge, CLEVENGER and DYK, Circuit
DYK, Circuit Judge.
Douglas A. Merritt, a U.S. Navy veteran and the original
claimant in this case, filed an application for serviceconnected
benefits. The Board of Veterans’ Appeals
(“Board”) held that Mr. Merritt had not established entitlement.
The United States Court of Appeals for Veterans
Claims (“Veterans Court”) affirmed, and Mr. Merritt appealed
to this court. Mr. Merritt died while his appeal was
pending. Christina Merritt filed a motion for substitution
arguing that she was the surviving spouse, which we
granted. We now dismiss the appeal as moot because Mrs.
Merritt has not preserved her claim by filing a formal claim
with the Department of Veteran Affairs (“VA”) within one
year of Mr. Merritt’s death as required by the applicable
statutes and regulations.
Mr. Merritt served in the U.S. Navy from May 1972 to
September 1973. During the time he was in service, in
March of 1973, Mr. Merritt sustained a
Read the full thread below
FedCir; Merritt v. Wilkie, No. 2019-1095(Decided: July 17, 2020); failure to preserved substitution claim by filing a formal claim with the Department of Veteran Affairs ("VA") within one year of death; Reeves, 682 F.3d at 992 ("[T]he question of substitution is separate from that of standing." (quoting Richard v. West, 161 F.3d 719, 722 (Fed. Cir. 1998)); an application for accrued benefits "must be filed within one year after the date of death [of the veteran beneficiary]." Id. § 5121(c);
United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit CHRISTINA MERRITT, SUBSTITUTED FORDOUGLAS A. MERRITT,Claimant-Appellantv.ROBERT WILKIE, SECRETARY OF VETERANSAFFAIRS,Respondent-Appellee 2019-1095 Appeal from the United States Court of Appeals forVeterans Claims in No. 17-898, Senior Judge Robert N. Davis. Decided: July 17, 2020 KENNETH M. CARPENTER, Law Offices of CarpenterChartered, Topeka, KS, argued for claimant-appellant.SEAN LYNDEN...