Willian C. Meili - Attorney at Law

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Issues & Cases

SHOW CAUSE - BOARD OF INQUIRY CASE STUDY

Field Board of Inquiry Defense

Notice of Intent to Eliminate and Show Cause for Retention Alleged (ABCP) Army Body Composition Program Failure IAW AR 600-9

Matter: Army Officer Show Cause Board – Field Board of Inquiry for a Military Physician; Army Body Composition Program (ABCP) Failure – Notice of Intent to Eliminate and Show Cause for Retention based on Substandard Performance

Summary: Medical doctor/officer with 14 years of active commissioned service was being boarded for an alleged ABCP failure. This officer had a long, documented history of medical issues, and had been through one MEB/PEB look, but as is typically the case, it is extremely difficult to be declared unfit for duty medically if you are a medical corps or general officer. While the Show Cause action was pending, my client again initiated the MEB process, but was once again found fit for duty by this second PEB. Without, therefore, a medical or regular retirement available, our 14 year officer client was in danger of losing everything if the Board voted to eliminate.

Our client is extremely intelligent, and a highly skilled medical specialist. What he was not particularly good at, however, was communicating well with either colleagues or those in his line/tactical or professional (hospital) command chains. And like many, he was not well versed in the details of the ABCP regulation AR 600-9 which had received a major overhaul in 2013. It was my job as his attorney to save his career and restore him to a position of full trust and responsibilities within the medical corps.

We tried the case before an officer panel at a major command installation. The government (Army) was represented by two excellent, active duty JAG officers and a team of paralegals, and The Board was advised by an active duty JAG legal advisor. My argument boiled down to the fact that my client had not been afforded due process under the regulation, and that, as a result, he had been improperly enrolled and processed in ABCP from the inception.

Result: The Board voted unanimously to retain — citing a lack of due process.

Highlights: 1. Client Doctor stays in uniform, continues a career and preserves the possibility of a full retirement someday; 2. Moreover, as a result of the entire process, our client also established a much stronger relationship with his specialty consultant. That improved relationship then led to a more suitable assignment match for client's next move; and, 3. Finally seeing a hunch I had early on about how to prevail ultimately validated and confirmed by a panel of highly competent, senior field grade officers.

References:  Please call us at 214-363-1828 or email us at info@meililaw.com for further details and contact information.


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