asknod Elder
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asknod last won the day on February 25

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About asknod

  • Rank
    E-8 Senior Chief Petty Officer
  • Birthday 04/01/1951

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  • Location
    Gig Harbor, Washington
  • Interests
    TR-6 Sports Cars, old guns that go rat-a-tat-tat.

Previous Fields

  • Service Connected Disability
  • Branch of Service
    USAF/ Air America
  • Hobby
    VA Nonattorney practitioner. HCV 100%; PCT 100%; anemia 60%;Cryoglobulinemia/Fibromyalgia 40%, Scars 30%: Tinnitus 10%

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  1. Sorry, but that is incorrect. Here's how this works. Housebound, as defined by a shrink, is immaterial. VA rates you, based on your percentage, for SMC S (Housebound). Once you are rated as 100% disabled for bent brain, the next level of compensation above that is SMC S. Thus, you did not "qualify" for SMC S until you attained the 100% rating. Now that you have it, your SMC S effective date should, by law, be the date they granted the 100% -or May 2015. SMC is unique. You do not have to file for it. It is paid from the day you can medically prove you qualify for it-even if it is far in the past. Several years after I won my 100%, I also won an additional 60% (and more) retroactive to 1994. VA had to pay me the SMC S all the way back to that filing date. I have one Vet I'm working with who filed for seizures relating to 16 meds for PTSD in 1989. He finally won in 2013 but filed a NOD for an earlier effective date. VA never finished it back in 89. We'll win, I'm sure, but his effective date will be 1989 when we do.
  2. SMC (t) goes up to $2100/month. SMC R2 caregiver is $8,344.00 a month. SMC (t) is graduated usually into separate tiers of entitlement. Rarely is it paid at full freight.
  3. <<<Don't let filing Appeals interfere with filing additional SC Claims, big costly mistake.>>> Yes and no. If your claim(s) have been certified and a VA 8 issued, then what Gastone offers is good advice. On the other hand, if you have a NOD or VA 9 filed on a claim or claims, and you suddenly add new claims to the mix, the RO will develop all the claims together and certify them at one time together. This can result in 2014 claim(s) being "held back" until the newer 2016 claim(s) are developed to appeal status. They then package the whole enchilada up and affix the VA 8 to the combined appeal. The BVA does likewise. Occasionally, they'll remand a claim back to correct a deficiency or ask for a new c&p exam. The rest of the appeal sits on hold until the remand is complete and they adjudicate it all in one bundle. You can force them to do it by asking for a waiver of review in the first instance and requesting an up or down decision on the pending unremanded claims. Sometimes they listen and do it. Sometimes not.
  4. To get to R2 from S, you will have to meet all the requirements of SMC O or be totally disabled and have the last name of Shulkin. Being married to his daughter might work, too. I think I'd be concentrating on making the leap from SMC S to SMC L based on the need for Aid and Attendance as a preliminary goal. Use VAF 21-2680 as a template for feasibility.
  5. CUE

    Exactly. I was wounded in 70 as well. In 2006, my biopsy showed Stage III, grade 3.
  6. CUE

    Each stage (0-4) in the METAVIR scale is 10 -14 years depending if you drink/drank a lot of booze. More booze means shorter stage. A very moderate drinker who has stage two probably got it anywhere from 20 to 30 years ago. Stage indicates age/ grade indicates how fast it is turning your liver into hamburger helper. Grade One is slow damage Grade four is balls to the wall. The good news is after you do the new Harvoni cure, your liver actually starts to regenerate somewhat over time. Studies suggest it may retreat one whole stage over 10-14 yrs. post-infection. One thing I can say is your energy level will go up afterwards.
  7. CUE

    VA must render a decision on a facts-found basis. However, in a case of combat, the Vet's testimony is unimpeachable. Genotype 1A is distinctly American in nature. Geno 1B is European -or was- almost exclusively until we began moving around via air transport. Geno 2A and 2B were unique to Japan, Korea and Okinawa before 2000. Geno 4 is almost all of Egypt. Older service members are more prone to have geographical genotypes indigenous to their area of service-hence my Geno 3A. As for having 1A, who's to say the blood he came in contact with was not from another serviceman infected here in America-perhaps by a jetgun in basic? If the Vet in question had a tattoo in country, that would be a risk easily proven by no tattoo noted on item 39 on the Entrance Physical(SF 88) and noted in the same block on separation. Even so much as a urinary tract infection (UTI) or non-gonococcal urethritis (NGU) cite in the service medical records is a risk for HCV. If you had intercourse with a prostitute and came down with an STD, that is a well-proven path to service connection. The key word here is 'blood-to-blood' contamination. There are myriad ways that can occur as I pointed out above. Any single one can be exploited by a competent gastrodoc and an IMO constructed that will hold water on appeal.
  8. CUE

    Credibility has to be demolished to ignore the Vet's testimony. We can testify to that which comes to us via our five senses ( Layno v. Brown). The acid test is the liver biopsy. No one can fake it. If you are stage 4 on the METAVIR scale, it happened 40 or more years ago. Period. I got hep from a GSW on Sept. 17, 70. I came down with hep 89 days later after the transfusion. They figured it was HBV. Turns out it was B and C together. I never had A. My METAVIR score in 2006 was Stage 4, 3/4 fibrosis. To add more, it was Genotype 3A-only found on the Indochinese peninsula back then(Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam). Oh, and Australia. Seems we took it there on R&R and left it behind.
  9. That is correct. In 2010, SMC S was $3,143.00 /month ( with spouse only). Deduct the amount you were paid per month in 2010 December from this and add the difference X 12 months to December 2011. And so on. $3,255 in 2011 December $3,309 in 2012 '' '' $3,3358.68 in 2013 '' '' $3,415.78 in 2014-2015 '' '' $3,425.99 in 2016 '' '' (current rate)
  10. CUE

    From: The examiner noted the abdominal symptoms were prior to Viet Nam and were unlikely the cause and also stated his wound could be the source of HCV but there are no records of unsanitary conditions. Am I the only one that sees this? I've been in a few dustups and one involved stuffing the guts back in while we awaited Evac. There was nothing sanitary about being wounded in Vietnam. That's hearsay. Conjecture. Conflicts with well-known battlefield medical conditions. Now, why would there be a nurseynurse standing there with a Patient folder noting unsanitary practices during treatment at 312th Air Evac at Chu Lai? Remember, this was before rubber gloves. They were still using glass syringes and you sharpened a dull needle on the matchpack flint You were going to be there 2 days at most until they found room for you at Da Nang or Cam Ranh. 3 days of triage and off to Zama or the 248th at Tachikawa. If it was a scratch? 3rd Army Hosp. in Saigon for a week. Things didn't begin to approach sanitary until Da Nang or Cam Ranh. Flies. Bugs. Other guy's blood in the dustoff. Any evidence of a wound in combat gets a Purple Heart. The law says you have to believe the Vet's testimony if it involves combat with the wagon burners (38 USC 1154(b). This is more a case of how can you lose? I've seen junkies win.
  11. $25 K is the high limit. Over that, they have to get a concurrence from VBACO. That would be Tom Murphy.
  12. <<< Would being Scheduler instead of IU prevented the 50 from 70? >>> Yes if it , or even the 70% was substantially protected by five or more years @ 100% schedular. I understand your question, sir. Let's take 1990. You were awarded X %. In a CUE claim, it has been decided legally that you are allowed to employ the Joe Fenderson staged ratings game. VA has to, by law, give you what your medical records would support from 1990 to 1998. They never do. If you go 5 years with no c&p exams then that/those rating(s) become "substantially" protected. You are substantially protected unless they do two exams within a 12-month period and find a doctor to say you're now expected to be better for the rest of your life. They cannot do this in a CUE. They are bound by the evidence of record. You can go to the VAMC ROI office and introduce all those medrecs as new and material evidence to use for a staged rating. It's pretty near impossible to go back and have a c&p now. Nowadays, if they do ask for a checky check a few years later, and you're still toast, then they leave you alone. Remember, at 19 years (1998-2017), you are a sitting duck for them to try to pick you off and prevent you from permanently protected 20-year P&T. I always get a doctor to write it up with a clear 'he ain't gonna get no better'. That works well. A CUE win is a rare opportunity to go back in time and argue every little item. The Presumption of Regularity that VA employees are knowledgeable in their jobs is rebutted in a CUE decision. Everything is now open for re-interpretation and benefit of the doubt. VA knows they'll lose-both on appeal and the Court of public opinion. Lose/lose. Make them see that. So, you get from 1990 to 1998 at somewhere between 10-60% for a malady(ies). It/they got worse and the VA agrees you were unemployable and eligible to extraschedular rating (TDIU). Either you put in for an increase to get one rating at 100% (which is what we call a total schedular rating, or you wait several years and then ask for P&T. In retro terms, I find that a RO grant is usually a low ball number requiring appeal. I like to barter for a higher one and offer that we won't appeal. They usually throw in a 20% jump from 30 to 50 or 20 to 40 just before you go to the BVA to see if you'll chicken out. If they do, that ought to tell you something. Either they're lowballing or stupid and don't know the law. But if they agree, that's breaking the law. Purposefully low balling when the record supports a higher rating is appealable but you want to get 'er done. Get a lawyer or agent and let them barter in VAspeak. Never ever write down anything about bartering. It occurs "off the record".
  13. This is why I said to be careful about that 1990 P&T rating. VA often will attempt to lowball that 1990 date and not begin IU until a later date like 98. You end up with a subpar rating from 90 to 98. Depending on the date assigned for the P&T IU, add twenty years to it to get the protected date.I had one Vet who got to 19 years and 4 months. Bingo. New C&P downgraded him to 50 from 70 for PTSD and a small bump in DM2 from 20 to 40% kept him at IU but the protected 20 year rate flew out the window and a new clock began. We got it overturned at the BVA because they only gave him one c&p instead of two and no discussion on whether the "improvement" was expected to be sustainable.
  14. <<<<<Bronco, the CUE is going back to 1990, and the Permanent IU is going back to the first time I filed for it, which was July, 1998>>>> No brainer. SMC S from 98. I got SMC S from 94 to 2015 retro. It was about $72 K. Hardly a Brinks truck. Watch out for a low ball rating from 90 to 98. Here's what you get from 98:
  15. Dear Sir, It just so happens Hep C is our specialty. I've helped many get SC for it since I won in 2007. Go to to view how or contact me at and I'll lay it out for you. There's a way to do it and win. And thanks John for the heads up. Leave no one behind. a