Master Chief Petty Officer
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Vync last won the day on November 5 2016

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About Vync

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    E-9 Master Chief Petty Officer
  • Birthday October 15

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    Ft.Living Room, AL

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  1. I don't know if the former prez had any direct involvement in this one. Who knows, but I can imagine it being a case of clothing allowance claims having a higher approval rate than regular claims. Can't have high approval rates for anything, so they had to adopt a policy increasing their initial denial rate.
  2. Mine is still stuck on appeal from November 2016. When the VA clothing allowance policies were updated a couple of years back, it became evident that common sense is not so common. Moving a bunch of braces into the deny initially category because they "tend" to not wear out clothing is a poor way to go about it. No idea about the creams though... I don't use them to treat an SC condition, but it does sound worth pursuing.
  3. SC at 0% is still a good thing. If those conditions ever meet criteria for 10% or higher, you can file for an increase.
  4. I tried to keep the questions related to the original topic, as I had a feeling they might be asked at some point. Also, I was curious about them myself. Thanks Berta!
  5. Thanks Berta. Two more quick questions: 1. If the appellate period has expired, is the only option a normal CUE? 2. If the decision was appealed, does it make any difference?
  6. Berta, Is there any difference between "asking the VA to CUE themselves" vs. filing a CUE claim? Are they one in the same?
  7. Congratulations!!!
  8. Thanks Andyman, My father also retired from 25 years in the Army right after I graduated high school and I was in the Army not too long after that. I still keep up with a few people I went to HS with. Any chance you might have some good friends who knew you then, later, and now?
  9. If you look at the mental health rating criteria, "chronic sleep disturbance" is listed in the 30% criteria. If there is no other reason for sleep issues, then the VA would be correct. The mental health rating criteria is based on symptoms, not necessarily a psychological diagnosis. Having numerous symptoms or diagnosed conditions would still result in a single rating due. However, there could be other causes of sleep disturbances. For example, if you were an IED victim and suffered TBI, if you suffer from sleep apnea and have daytime hypersomnolence (tiredness all day), etc... For what it's worth, a lot of folks with PTSD have sleep apnea and don't necessarily know it because they never had a sleep study. It would likely take a doctor attributing your sleep disturbances to another cause in order for the VA to concede.
  10. Hey Andyman, I have not been on here as often as I would like due to my new little boy and a lot of back problems. If you have friends or family who knew you before/after the events, perhaps they might have noticed a change in behavior and perhaps could write a buddy statement. The statements don't have to be limited to military only. Keep in mind that the treatment for traumatic events tends to vary by individual. What works for one person might not work as well for another. At some point, they may consider putting you on meds to help manage the stress, help you sleep, etc... Side effects of the meds may differ from person to person. Additionally, you may have to try different counselors/docs, genders, etc... until you find the one who really helps. I'm saying that there is a lot of trial and error involved. It may take a long time, but don't give up.
  11. The CBO seems to always recommend this be cut every year.
  12. Here is a BVA win for heat stroke in Kuwait: https://www.va.gov/vetapp16/Files5/1637363.txt
  13. I would recommend calling the ebenefits hotline. Someone there should be able to explain it. https://www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefits/contact eBenefits Questions and Technical Issues 1-800-983-0937 Monday - Friday, 8:00 am - 8:00 pm ET
  14. It is difficult to say at this point. Yes, every won and/or lost claim requires signature. On my last couple of claims, the VARO called me to go over everything (claims and retro) before submitting to final authorization. Unfortunately, this does not always happen, but it was very considerate of them. Others have reported seeing additional early info on ebenefits in the disability list and/or in the letter generator. Sometimes the deposit may arrive in the bank before letter finds its way to the mailbox. In cases where larger amounts of retro are awarded they will need signed authorization from higher up the management chain. Important: I recommend you not get too excited until you see either a deposit and a letter. I hope you get good news
  15. Yes, but expect the VA to initially try saying they are pyramiding. However, there are a number of other ratings which include sleep issues as part of their evaluation criteria, such as neurological (i.e. TBI) or mental health. Insomnia as a "Chronic sleep impairment" may be related to nightmares, PTSD, depression, anxiety, etc... may related to mental health disability: Insomnia resulting in persistent daytime tiredness may be related to a respiratory disability: