Master Chief Petty Officer
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Gastone last won the day on February 22

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About Gastone

  • Rank
    E-9 Master Chief Petty Officer
  • Birthday 08/27/1947

Previous Fields

  • Service Connected Disability
  • Branch of Service
    USMC BLT 1/26 9Th MAB 68/69
  • Hobby
    Scuba Diving, EF the area!

Profile Information

  • Location
    Troy MI
  • Interests
    Work-Wrenching, Assisting fellow Nam Vets, Being a Grand Father X 5,Visual Appreciation of "ALL"
    Women and computer research.

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  • Yahoo

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  1. It will be what they (the VA Raters) call a Staged Rating, taking into consideration what your Combined SC Comp rate should have been for the period in question. The difference between what you should have been paid and what you were paid, will be your Retro. The Retro will hit your Bank well before the actual Award Letter. As soon as you get the Award Letter, confirm that you agree with the Retro Dates. If you determine there is an error, supported by the "Evidence of Record," file an FDC Request for CUE Review of the Retro Award Dates ASAP. Semper Fi
  2. My 2 cents, unless you have continuity of symptoms with supporting medical records, an FDC would probably end up as a Reg A$$ Claim. All claims large or small, are worth pursuing. Your 50%, right, a 10% Bilateral would bump you to 60. Run the numbers with your current SC's, could get you in the area of a 65 round up to 70. Semper Fi
  3. With 2 months to go for your BVA Vidio Hearing, which is basically a Face to Face Hearing with a BVA Hearing Judge, what makes you think you could change it to an in-person DC Hearing at this point? You might want to give VA lawyer Chris Attig's interview with a SR BVA Judge a read. Although the Hearings are presided over by a BVA Lawyer, referred to as a BVA Hearing Judge, in essence, is a Law Clerk for the SR Judge, who actually will render a Decision X months down the road. What exactly are you Appealing, when did you get your BVA Docket Number? How about sharing some info, redacted Denials would be very interesting. Who's Repping you with the BVA? Get back to us with your opinion of the 04/17 Hearing. Semper Fi
  4. VA SA SC's are difficult to come by, was your SC DXpre or post your Sinus DX? You didn't indicate what type of SA DX, OSA, CSA or Mixed SA. Your's is? If it's OSA, how many of the "Usual Suspects" do you have? BMI, neck 17+, age, just to name a few. I can't say I've ever seen a post where a Vet was successful in getting a SA SC Secondary to a DX that was post, SA DX. Get and post redacted copies of the (2) C & P DBQ's when you can. Semper Fi
  5. It's always about the $$ with the Legal Eagles. In early 15 I advised a friend, that was about 4 or 5 years into a BVA Appeal with DAV Rep, to contact Attig Law. After doing the what appears to be the standard legal associate interview, they begged off. Citing that the Firm was too busy with other Vet Representation to take his case. They wished him well and told him to try other Firms. He called me all Pi$$ed off, really down in the dumps. I pointed him at the DC Pro Bono Vet Firm, (?Veterans Legal Consortium?). I had told him before he contacted Attig Law, being already IU, his 5+ yr SMC K Retro ($7K) was going to be a problem. The DC Pro Bono outfit signed him, got a Denial at the BVA end of 15 and Rep'd him at the CAVC. I think about 9/16 CAVC Remanded his case back to the RO, as of last week, still pending. However, the DC Pro Bono Firm scored VA Legal fees to the tune of either $13 or $18K, to be paid by the VA. At the CAVC a Remand is considered a WIN (Legal Fee eligibility wise), regardless of the final outcome. Semper Fi
  6. Mark, if your potential Retro is significant ($40+k) and your case appears strong, you shouldn't have a problem choosing from the long list of VA Accredited (For Fee) Attorneys. On the other hand, Retro Of less than say $40K and a case requiring significant Attorney effort, you could have a problem finding representation among the "For Fee" Legal Firms. You're at the BVA, have you been assigned a Docket Number? It's been since 02/14 that I checked out (2) national advertised "Big Time" VA Legal Firms and 1 local VA Accredited Lawyer, for a DRO Hearing that had been pending for 4 yrs. Both national outfits, after about a 1/2 hr Legal Associate interview, wanted me to sign right away and cancel the DRO Hearing request in favor of a BVA Hearing. Never spoke with an actual Attorney. The local VA Accredited Lawyer offered me a "Free Consult" which lasted about 25 min. At the end, she thought I would prevail repping myself at the DRO, but offered her service if needed for the BVA. I was really impressed with her attitude, had I not been Awarded all issues at the 06/14 DRO Hearing, she would have been my choice for the BVA. Semper Fi
  7. The ability of VSO RO Hq to view and print info from a Vet's C-File poses an interesting question, why would the VA offer appointments for C-File viewing that requires advance notice and a VA Employee being with the Vet for the entire Viewing appointment? It sounds like it would be much easier for a Vet to visit his VSO HQ and request to view his C-file on their computer. Makes sense that trying to spend that kind of time with a VSR, with a line of Vets waiting to see him, would be out of the question. Back in 13 and early 14, VSR's at the VMC had very limited access to info that wasn't already in their possession. Never spoke with a VSR that claimed remote access directly to my C-File. When I did visit my VSO at the RO early 14, only new info that was provided regarding my 4-year-old DRO Hearing Request, was that "Diary Dates?" had come and gone. Ne real indication regarding the DRO Date, or status other than pending. Hearing finally took place 06/23/14. Semper Fi
  8. NOD, is the ability of the RO VSO to access the Vet's C-File relatively new, say last couple years? Do the VSO's have the ability to Print specific pages of the Vet's C-File? Semper Fi
  9. Proof that your currently unable to do even "Sedentary Work" will rule the day. Have you obtained a copy of your MH C& P DBQ? Post a redacted copy when you get a chance. Semper Fi
  10. Did you file your VA C-File FOIA request yet, if not, why not? Your 70%, a 50% for SA would bump you to 90% SC Comp Rate, much better Comp Rate. What exactly have you done so far, with regards to a New SA Secondary Claim? Are there any Sleep Neurologist MDs in Thailand? I think my (1) and only non-VA Sleep Study (2 nights 2010), cost BCBS about 20 or $30K. How close is the nearest VMC?
  11. BYJO, you're 75, had a DRO Denial, had a Negative Tort Claim Decision and you've been waiting for a BVA Hearing for over 48 mos. WTF does your VA Lawyer, you better have one, say?? Considering your circumstances, doing anything with the BVA without a VA Lawyer is ill advised. Even if you can't find a VA "For Fee" Lawyer that thinks you have a winner, get with the DC Pro Bono legal consortium, you need VA Legal Representation. You're quite probably looking at a BVA Denial Decision being issued 6 to 12 months after your Hearing. Next stop CAVC, best to have the VA Legal Representation already onboard. Semper Fi
  12. You could try a Fortune Teller for $20.00, or better yet, the "Old Black 8 Ball" that you swish around and read the answer in the bottom. Both are probably as reliable as any VA telephone info. Your already 80% SC, so this isn't your 1st Rodeo. Is your awaited Decision from an FDC or Reg A$$ Claim? FDC decisions have been reported in as little as 3 to 6 months, as compared to Reg A$$ Claim Decisions that can take upwards of 18 mos depending on the complexity of the evidence. Then there's the need for the Rating Dept Honcho's signature if the Retro is over $25?K. Everything adds a little more wait-time, but the $$ are worth the wait, right. As always, your Retro will hit your Direct Deposit account well in advance of the VA Decision Letter. Be sure your DD Bank/CU account is set up to real-time Txt & Email you regarding all financial transactions. You might wake up to a happy surprise one morning. I think every SC Retro Deposit I have received, over the last 6 yrs, hit my account after 6PM EST. Semper Fi
  13. I think I've been waiting about 5 mos now, used the VA FOIA request FAX Number. Got a confirmation of receipt E-mail within 3 days from (FOIA.VBACO@VA.GOV). This C-File FOIA Request, as did a 10/12 C-File FOIA, shows up on my E-Ben as a Pending Claim. Back in 01/14, it had been about 14 months since the FOIA in-person filing at my RO, for the 9 inch C-File to arrive. I trust this FOIA request will be delivered on a Searchable CD, just like the VMC Med Records on CD. FDC's are the only thing with the VA that you can expect fast movement on, usually less than 6 mos. Semper FI
  14. How much, if any, New & Material Evidence did you supply with your NOD Review Request? When exactly, did you supply the VA Mandatory N & M Evidence (required for all DRO Reviews & Hearings)? Looking back at my DRO Hearing (06/28/2014), requested 11/2010, I'm sure some of the 4.25 yr wait was my own fault. I can tell you that I really didn't start getting concerned until early 2013. As of 01/14 I hadn't been able to get any info regarding my Hearing Date. I decided to file an Official Request for a VA DRO "Informal Evidence Conference." Other than a VA acknowledgment of the Request filing, never heard anything else prior to the VA Notice of my 06/14 Scheduled Hearing. VA MMR doesn't show the specific number of pending DRO Reviews or Hearings, they're all lumped into the total number of Appeals. Check with your VSO's RO HQ, how many DRO's does your RO have? If you don't meet the criteria for a "Medical or Financial Hardship Advancement," all you can do is sit and wait. The DRO's work the Appeals piles in the order received unless you get a Hardship Bump to the top of the stack. Semper Fi
  15. The VA C & P Dr's Medical Credentials would be interesting. His giving no credence to your CAD or DB II appears, in my lay opinion, to indicate he was not an expert in SA causing conditions. What is your Medical History of your weight gain? Significant weight gains after a Heart Attack and/or Bypass surgery are very common. The old "Equipose Medical Evidence," will probably come into play with regards to an Appeal. You need to present N & M Evidence that could support a "Jump Ball" Decision which would require the Rater to Award you based on the VA Benefit Of Doubt Doctrine.