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How to Get your VA C-File


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    • Sleep Apnea Claim
      The last RBA I got (RBA is the same as Cfile, but a RBA is certified to CAVC) was on DVD.  
    • C&P Exam Completed [Bad Vibe]
      Anyone know how long the wait period is from where I can try to print out the c&p exam at my VA center?   
    • Fully Developed Cue
      According to the 1-800 folks my NOD with the DRO is now "ready to rate".  Who knows how long before they pick it up to look at it...   In hindsight I guess I should have sent this straight to BVA, but I'm young (45) so I assume I have some time.   That's the latest, I'll update when I get an SOC.  I'm going all the way to CAVC with this one.
    • Sleep Apnea Claim
      Thank you. Ha....when I retired I had to stand in front of a copy machine and make my own copies. A disk would be great.
    • Reserve/End of contract
      Hello All, Need some suggestions, I served on Active Duty for 9 years and then joined the reserves before my contract ended. I have now been in the reserves for 4 years.
      I was artillery during my AD time and it was frowned upon to go to medical for anything, I smashed my hand between the garage door and the howitzer pushing it out and was told not to go to medical. Finally after a week, I went to an off base urgent care facility and found that I had fractured two bones in my hand and they put a half cast on my pink and ring fingers and going up my hand. Well I received a page 11 for not following an order, so that was my wake up call into the unit. Going forward I rarely went to medical and I have had many injuries since. I deployed in 06/07 and in 09 and after returning home my wife started saying I was choking in my sleep, so I went to my family doctor at the time outside Quantico (no longer a doctors office) and was prescribed a CPAP machine. I used it for about a year and some change and left the military to go back home. I began the lengthy process with filing a claim with the VA only to be denied. I am now currently in the reserves which is no better, I injured my back when I was in Iraq falling from a wrecker and at the time I was on 800 mg ibuprofen about 6 times a day. I did something to my back again in 2014 during a training exercise to the point I could not move, the unit has now been going back and forth with RMED since 2014 and still has yet to come back with approval. I have been going to the VA for appointments and having them take a look at my back since orthopedic/physical therapy through civilian care is killing my pockets. My military medical records are MIA and I never made copies. I have a copy of my original sleep study but it does not show the actual study it just gives the doctors narrative and what he prescribed at the time. I originally started going to the VA for counseling sessions for PTSD/in service stress but stopped due to the issue with service connection PTSD causing issues with security clearances and other issues and at the time I was serving on the police force in a local town. Is there anything I can do currently that will help with submitting my claim, should I get my current VA doctor to recommend anything, or should I find a good doctor on the outside of the VA? My back pain is probably the biggest factor and now is causing a lot of issues with my knees. I also have high blood pressure, I am still fighting with sleep issues. I have little documentation from doctors but do have a decent record with my chiropractor over the past 4 years since moving back home. Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated. Thanks
    • My husband died in motorcycle accident
      From what I can tell here, the retro DIC would go back to May 2010,the month he died in  and when the 21-534 was filed.
    • Back Pay?
      A Dickerson, I have never heard of VA calling to ask for your bank account number because that information is considered personal. I have heard of VA sending you a letter telling you they need you to confirm your account information and bank information, routing number, etc. These days you can't trust the person on the other end of a phone. Did they give you there service code number. It just sound like something VA wouldn't do with all this identity theft stuff going on. If you haven't already I would call the 800-827-1000 number and confirm someone did call you from VA. Call me paranoid  
    • My husband died in motorcycle accident
      page1006 This may help you? or Confuse the heck out of you, I'm sure MsBerta will know. Unless specifically provided otherwise in this chapter, the effective date of an award based on an original claim, a claim reopened after final adjudication, or a claim for increase, of compensation, dependency and indemnity compensation, or pension, shall be fixed in accordance with the facts found, but shall not be earlier than the date of receipt of application therefor. (b)(1) The effective date of an award of disability compensation to a veteran shall be the day following the date of the veteran’s discharge or release if application therefor is received within one year from such date of discharge or release. (2)(A) The effective date of an award of disability compensation to a veteran who submits an application therefor that sets forth an original claim that is fully-developed (as determined by the Secretary) as of the date of submittal shall be fixed in accordance with the facts found, but shall not be earlier than the date that is one year before the date of receipt of the application. (B) For purposes of this paragraph, an original claim is an initial claim filed by a veteran for disability compensation. (C) This paragraph shall take effect on the date that is one year after the date of the enactment of the Honoring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012 and shall not apply with respect to claims filed after the date that is three years after the date of the enactment of such Act. (3) The effective date of an award of increased compensation shall be the earliest date as of which it is ascertainable that an increase in disability had occurred, if application is received within one year from such date. (4)(A) The effective date of an award of disability pension to a veteran described in subparagraph (B) of this paragraph shall be the date of application or the date on which the veteran became permanently and totally disabled, if the veteran applies for a retroactive award within one year from such date, whichever is to the advantage of the veteran. (B) A veteran referred to in subparagraph (A) of this paragraph is a veteran who is permanently and totally disabled and who is prevented by a disability from applying for disability pension for a period of at least 30 days beginning on the date on which the veteran became permanently and totally disabled. (c) The effective date of an award of disability compensation by reason of section 1151 of this title shall be the date such injury or aggravation was suffered if an application therefor is received within one year from such date. (d) The effective date of an award of death compensation, dependency and indemnity compensation, or death pension for which application is received within one year from the date of death shall be the first day of the month in which the death occurred. (e)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, the effective date of an award of dependency and indemnity compensation to a child shall be the first day of the month in which the child’s entitlement arose if application therefor is received within one year from such date. (2) In the case of a child who is eighteen years of age or over and who immediately before becoming eighteen years of age was counted under section 1311(b) of this title in determining the amount of the dependency and indemnity compensation of a surviving spouse, the effective date of an award of dependency and indemnity compensation to such child shall be the date the child attains the age of eighteen years if application therefor is received within one year from such date. (f) An award of additional compensation on account of dependents based on the establishment of a disability rating in the percentage evaluation specified by law for the purpose shall be payable from the effective date of such rating; but only if proof of dependents is received within one year from the date of notification of such rating action. (g) Subject to the provisions of section 5101 of this title, where compensation, dependency and indemnity compensation, or pension is awarded or increased pursuant to any Act or administrative issue, the effective date of such award or increase shall be fixed in accordance with the facts found but shall not be earlier than the effective date of the Act or administrative issue. In no event shall such award or increase be retroactive for more than one year from the date of application therefor or the date of administrative determination of entitlement, whichever is earlier. (h) Where an award of pension has been deferred or pension has been awarded at a rate based on anticipated income for a year and the claimant later establishes that income for that year was at a rate warranting entitlement or increased entitlement, the effective date of such entitlement or increase shall be fixed in accordance with the facts found if satisfactory evidence is received before the expiration of the next calendar year. (i) Whenever any disallowed claim is reopened and thereafter allowed on the basis of new and material evidence resulting from the correction of the military records of the proper service department under section 1552 of title 10, or the change, correction, or modification of a discharge or dismissal under section 1553 of title 10, or from other corrective action by competent authority, the effective date of commencement of the benefits so awarded shall be the date on which an application was filed for correction of the military record or for the change, modification, or correction of a discharge or dismissal, as the case may be, or the date such disallowed claim was filed, whichever date is the later, but in no event shall such award of benefits be retroactive for more than one year from the date of reopening of such disallowed claim. This subsection shall not apply to any application or claim for Government life insurance benefits. (j) Where a report or a finding of death of any person in the active military, naval, or air service has been made by the Secretary concerned, the effective date of an award of death compensation, dependency and indemnity compensation, or death pension, as applicable, shall be the first day of the month fixed by that Secretary as the month of death in such report or finding, if application therefor is received within one year from the date such report or finding has been made; however, such benefits shall not be payable to any person for any period for which such person has received, or was entitled to receive, an allowance, allotment, or service pay of the deceased. (k) The effective date of the award of benefits to a surviving spouse or of an award or increase of benefits based on recognition of a child, upon annulment of a marriage shall be the date the judicial decree of annulment becomes final if a claim therefor is filed within one year from the date the judicial decree of annulment becomes final; in all other cases the effective date shall be the date the claim is filed. (l) The effective date of an award of benefits to a surviving spouse based upon a termination of a remarriage by death or divorce, or of an award or increase of benefits based on recognition of a child upon termination of the child’s marriage by death or divorce, shall be the date of death or the date the judicial decree or divorce becomes final, if an application therefor is received within one year from such termination. [(m) Repealed. Pub. L. 103–446, title XII, § 1201(i)(8), Nov. 2, 1994, 108 Stat. 4688.] (n) The effective date of the award of any benefit or any increase therein by reason of marriage or the birth or adoption of a child shall be the date of such event if proof of such event is received by the Secretary within one year from the date of the marriage, birth, or adoption. (Pub. L. 85–857, Sept. 2, 1958, 72 Stat. 1226, § 3010; Pub. L. 87–674, § 3, Sept. 19, 1962, 76 Stat. 558; Pub. L. 87–825, § 1, Oct. 15, 1962, 76 Stat. 948; Pub. L. 91–376, § 7, Aug. 12, 1970, 84 Stat. 790; Pub. L. 91–584, § 13, Dec. 24, 1970, 84 Stat. 1578; Pub. L. 93–177, § 6(a), Dec. 6, 1973, 87 Stat. 696; Pub. L. 93–527, § 9(b), Dec. 21, 1974, 88 Stat. 1705; Pub. L. 94–71, title I, § 104, Aug. 5, 1975, 89 Stat. 396; Pub. L. 97–66, title II, § 204(b), Oct. 17, 1981, 95 Stat. 1029
    • C&P Exam Completed [Bad Vibe]
      Arng I'm already S/C for these conditions. I was being evaluated for an increase.   buck I've also heard the work up can be found on mhv shortly after. I will try this too. 
    • My husband died in motorcycle accident
      I'm only guessing but I would say the date your hubby filed his claim, DIC maybe different in this type case, but if you win out I think it would be the date he filed  but I'm not sure? Ms Berta will know. ..............Buck

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Gunner9835

Searching Bva Decisions

7 posts in this topic

I know I saw somewhere that someone listed a trick to use while searching BVA decisions off the web, like a way to target certain claims and cut out the non important info???? Anyone know what I'm talking about?

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here's a link to the bva search http://www.index.va.gov/search/va/bva.html I have created a demo movie on how to search hadit.com which may help here it is http://www.hadit.com/searching_hadit.swf

I know I saw somewhere that someone listed a trick to use while searching BVA decisions off the web, like a way to target certain claims and cut out the non important info???? Anyone know what I'm talking about?

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There are some ways to hone in on BVA decision that you need.

I had a recent situation where I was asked to help with a CAVC case but the advocate didnt have their BVA decision critical to anything I could offer as to their pending CAVC issue).I had to find it myself.

I knew the BVA decision had to be within 3 months of their CAVC docket date.So I stayed in the 2010 decisions and then searched under some key words in the CAVC docket motions.Like " High Altitude flight " and I was surprised to find I narrowed this down to 2 cases at the BVA and the first one that popped up was the one I needed.

I knew the vet's lawyer's name- another way to narrow down the list- but he was unrepresented at the BVA so that didnt help but in some cases it could help.

My former rep brought a vet to my home years ago as he was stumped with the denials the vet had gotten.The vet was trying to prove inservice diabetes with no inservice diagnosis.

They called me by cell as they thought they were lost and ended up at a diary farm but I was right down the road from the diary farm a few mnutes away.I asked the rep before he hung up-if he remembered to bring the vet's BVA decision but he had forgotten it! (I had reminded him many times!!! :wacko: )

I had a few key words to search for -Army ,1960s, venereal disease, Texas,African American,and I knew his MOS.

Bingo- I found the case just as they pulled into my driveway.

It took about a year but I helped this vet get SCed for diabetes, manifested in service.

He did have an IMO before he got here but it was awful. I wrote up a guideline for the doctor to follow along with my

lay medical assessment of what I had found in his SMRs (which were extremely difficult to read)

So between the much better IMO ,his SMRs, and some help from me- he succeeded in a case that had been in the VA system for TWELVE years and at CAVC twice.It was a lot of work and his rep was shocked when he won.

I ended up reading his BVA decision many many times.The KEY to his SC award was within the very first paragraph of the decision.One medical WORD.

I asked the vet and the rep what the word meant. They didn't have a clue and never looked it up.By this time 2 LAWYERS the vet had at the CAVC had never looked up this word.

When they left I got on the net and found what it meant.It was a documented manifestation of his diabetes inservice.

It was also listed in the Diabetes Training letter which I circled with a highlighter and submitted with his better IMO.

I could have never helped him get the valid IMO without a thorough study of his last BVA denial.

I study BVA decisions every week and sometimes every day.They have helped me in awelath of ways.Once you get the feel of the pulse of BVA and how they 'talk' and think- it helps to word a claim from the git go that will be properly decided if it ends up at the BVA.

Searching by disability at BVA shows how they use the Schedule of Ratings rgarding specific claims and how they weight the evidence.

Also BVA citations can become relevant to some claims and the veteran could use them if they are Precedent Decisions by the CAVC or OGC that could be relevant to their claim.

I found VA had violated the VCAA in my last case by finding a remand for similar lack of proper wording in another widow's claim.

Also BVA cases reflect the thinking patterns of the BVA.At times they are quite abrupt . I saw a case the other day where the veteran had claimed over 20 disabilities. He didn't have diagnosis of most of them and as the BVA indicated, the OIG was looking into a false document ( his DD 214 had been altered) that he had supplied to the VA.The BVA had continued the appeal fr remand on one isse that he really did have but it sounded to me like the veteran would not see a dime if the OIG pressed charges on him.

Anyone reading this type of BVA case is reminded well that before you help a vet one to one- best to see their DD 214 and look it over carefully.

Yo can also eliminate words like “denied” from a search you are dpiong at the BVA. Then from that list you can eliminate the word “remand” and then yo will narrow down your search to claims under your main search topic that have been awarded (or in a few cases dismissed.)

While BVA decisions are not prejudicial, they can be used in certain claims situations.

For exanmple in order to prove my CUE I refernced 4 BVA decision as to their legal aspects regarding M21-1 MR and 2 of these cases cited an OGC Pres Op that I submitted in full to stress my allegation of legal error(CUE)

Different types of claims can be searched initially by putting DIC, or Section 1151, or CUE into the BVA browser then narrowing them down.

It takes time to use the BVA web site and it can be time well spent.

One other thing-always look for the most current decision you can find for a specific search, as this will hold recent citations or even any changes in the regs or M21-1MR that could be critical info to what you are seeking.

Edited by Berta

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If you are trying to do research to support case law to support your claim, I would humbly suggest you search CAVC cases first. While this has been discussed before, CAVC cases which are "panel" (3 judges) or en banc (all the judges) are considered precedential, while BVA or "single judge" CAVC cases are non-precedential.

In other words if you have a similar situation as the claimant, the VA judge is required to rule in a similar manner in all precendial cases. However, if the case is not precedential, the judge may or may not consider how another judge ruled in a similar case.

That being said, BVA cases often cite CAVC, or even Federal cases, so BVA decisions are helpful in preparing your case as Berta has pointed out. I am not disputing what BERTA said...that BVA cases can help you learn from the get go how to word your claim...but if you want to cite a case, given a choice, you make it stronger by citing a precedential case. If there is no precedential case, then certainly cite the BVA case, or as Berta suggested, cite several.

I think some poeple here have opined that they use BVA cases and cite them in defending their positiion..and that is okay...but I do think if you cite precedential case law, you are making a stronger case in support of your position, but that is JMHO.

Edited by broncovet

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The trick that I use and that fanaticbooks put on her website is to search for the name of your condition with the phrase "is granted"

examples - YOU MUST INCLUDE THE QUOTATIONS

"PTSD is granted"

"angioedema is granted"

- This will get a high search return showing cases that were awarded. There will be some not so focused.

However, this gets a well focused search return. You can also use the "is denied" to get perspective. Hopefully this gets rid of all the remand cases.

Edited by Hoppy

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VERY GOOD advice Hoppy-

Remands tell us nothing as to the outcome.

When a claimant gets remand-in my opinion- they should try to do whatever the remand asked the RO to do-if possible.

When BVA remanded my claim for a cardiologist opinion-

I immediately got in touch with a cardio doctor and paid for an IMO.

But the remanded VA opinion came from a PA,not cardio doc, and was too speculative.(and easy for me to knock down in a rebuttal I sent to the BVA).The BVA already had 3 IMos from me.

The cardio doc had not even had time to prepare the IMO when my BVA award suddenly came and then he refunded some of the IMO fee.

I dont regret jumping the gun with the IMO money.Because I thought I would get a real cardio VA opinion. My evidence was strong yet I didn't expect any VA cardio doc to support the claim- as part of it involved a top VA cardio doc's negligence anyhow.

Other remands seeking records or SSA stuff etc- in those cases sometimes the vet can find exactly what the BVA expects the VARO to get and get it faster, and send it to the BVA themselves.

This does not work in most cases of remands but is worth a try in some.

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I went and got my Social Security records on my own and had them sent in for this reason....

VERY GOOD advice Hoppy-

Remands tell us nothing as to the outcome.

When a claimant gets remand-in my opinion- they should try to do whatever the remand asked the RO to do-if possible.

When BVA remanded my claim for a cardiologist opinion-

I immediately got in touch with a cardio doctor and paid for an IMO.

But the remanded VA opinion came from a PA,not cardio doc, and was too speculative.(and easy for me to knock down in a rebuttal I sent to the BVA).The BVA already had 3 IMos from me.

The cardio doc had not even had time to prepare the IMO when my BVA award suddenly came and then he refunded some of the IMO fee.

I dont regret jumping the gun with the IMO money.Because I thought I would get a real cardio VA opinion. My evidence was strong yet I didn't expect any VA cardio doc to support the claim- as part of it involved a top VA cardio doc's negligence anyhow.

Other remands seeking records or SSA stuff etc- in those cases sometimes the vet can find exactly what the BVA expects the VARO to get and get it faster, and send it to the BVA themselves.

This does not work in most cases of remands but is worth a try in some.

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