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  • Common Disabilities claimed as service connected disability. These links will take you to relevant articles and posts on the subject. Tinnitus | PTS(D) | Lumbosacral Cervical Strain | Scars | Limitation of flexion, knee | Diabetes | Paralysis of Siatic Nerve | Limitation of motion, ankle | Degenerative Arthritis Spine | TBI - Traumatic Brain Injury

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    • Hello Defenders of freedom!

      I have a question pertaining to this denial for headaches. The decision letter is quoted below. 

       

      3. Service connection for headaches.

      "We may grant service connection for a disability which began in military service or was caused by some event or experience in service.

      Your STRs are negative for any treatment of or diagnosis of headaches. On your post-deployment exam in 2005 you denied any headaches. On separation, you denied any headaches. VA treatment records are negative for any treatment of or diagnosis of headaches. On VA exam, the examiner stated there was no evidence of any residuals of a traumatic brain injury.

      We have denied service connection for headaches because the evidence of record fails to show this disability was incurred in or caused by military service."

      From my understanding these 3 points must be overturned to successfully win a CUE case:

       (1) either the correct facts, as they were known at the time, were not before the adjudicator or the statutory or regulatory provisions in existence at that time were incorrectly applied; 

      (2) the error must be undebatable and of the sort which, had it not been made, would have manifestly changed the outcome at the time of the prior determination

      and (3) a determination that there was CUE must be based on the record and law that existed at the time of the prior adjudication in question.  

      @Berta, or veterans out here who have knowledge/experience, tell me what facts you think would be needed to prove this denial for headaches was an error? 
      • 11 replies
    • In 2014 I put in a claim request for A&A due to housebound and secondary seizures to PTSD.    I request a legacy appeal to move to RAMP and now am in A Higher Level of Review.   It was in the Decision Review Stage in March 2019. It now is back to Gathering evidence.  I had requested  Feb 2019 for the VA to make a determination of the appeal based on all evidence currently in the case fine. It is now end of July 2019.  I just saw the estimated completion date of May 20, 2020 changed to August 2020.  The Modernnization/RAMP said that it would take approximately 120 days  Its now been 5 years since I submitted my claim and part  of that has been in appeal for close to four years.  How can I even tell if my appeal is being worked.  I am 65 years old and know I may have to send my appeal onto BVA, I may be dead before a conclusion is made.  I am also single so have no dependents that could receive back pay.  Is the VA playing me?  I have no representation or VSO
    • My claim went back to gathering of evidence after I had my second c&p exam for tbi initial. My vso the Dav said it was a dbq to differentiate the symptoms of tbi and PTSD as far as social and occupational impairment. I recieved at least as likely as not on all exams, PTSD, both tbi exams. Has anyone experienced this or know what it means? Is this a good sign my claim will be granted ? Thank you.
      • 21 replies
    • VA Claims requires a lot of note taking - What  I use for note taking
      Trouble Remembering? This helped me.

      I have memory problems and as some of you may know I highly recommend Evernote and have for years. Though I've found that writing helps me remember more. I ran across Tom's videos on youtube, I'm a bit geeky and I also use an IPad so if you take notes on your IPad or you are thinking of going paperless check it out. I'm really happy with it, I use it with a program called Noteshelf 2.

      Click here to purchase your digital journal. HadIt.com receives a commission on each purchase.
      • 2 replies
    • Do I have to quit my job?
      Hello everyone. See Below for what I received from VA

       

      A little about me currently. I have a job that is very low stress (work nights no people no stress) very secure because I work in a mountain so im surrounded by granite. I work on computers so it engages my mind and keeps me as active as possible and is my passion. So my question is do I have to quit my job? Thanks!

       

      June 23, 1999 June 30, 2019

      VA Benefit InformationSummary of benefit informationYou have one or more service-connected disabilities:Yes         Your combined service-connected evaluation is:100%               You are considered to be totally and permanently disabled due solely to your service-connected disabilities:Yes           The effective date of when you became totally and permanently disabled due to your service-connected disabilities:July 01, 2019

      major depression disorder, recurrent, severe, post traumatic stress disorder, insomnia disorder and eating disorder, NOS


                         100%


                               Service Connected



       

      SMC-S1

      Entitled to special monthly compensation under 38 U.S.C. 1114, subsection (s) and 38 CFR 3.350(i) on account of major depression disorder, recurrent, severe, post traumatic stress disorder, insomnia disorder and eating disorder, NOS rated 100 percent and additional service-connected disabilities of migraine including migraine variants, tinnitus, independently ratable at 60 percent or more from 07/01/2019.

      SMC-K1

      Entitled to special monthly compensation under 38 U.S.C. 1114, subsection (s) and 38 CFR 3.350(i) on account of major depression disorder, recurrent, severe, post traumatic stress disorder, insomnia disorder and eating disorder, NOS rated 100 percent and additional service-connected disabilities of migraine including migraine variants, tinnitus, independently ratable at 60 percent or more from 07/01/2019.

       

      Thanks all!

       
      • 61 replies

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  1. Past hour
  2. No, but you can call Peggy, which is the overall catch for info. 800-827-1000. Plan to be on a while., and unfortunately, I can't vouch for accuracy or timeliness of info told to you.By the way, part of the problem is you are likely going to get these roadblocks because you used the "old" system, not the one currently in place. The folks at the VA will probably do that again and sidetrack it. Can't walk and chew gum at the same time; more than one option, and they get confused.
  3. Just go with the flow. If you have to sign a form , so what. The procedure is that they probably will make a copy for you, but whatever. Nothing to worry about. Sometimes you have to make an appointment with them but from what you said, it doesn't sound like it is needed. Just be polite.
  4. Ok I call the 1 800 they tell me I have to put in writing to receive it. Ok if I go to ro an request it will they get it out my file. I don't want my file move of the dro desk. it almost 60 day he told me I would have the decision lol I dnt have vso heard they ask it just print out. Anybody every got a copy straight from the ro
  5. Today
  6. Howdy all. I mailed my NODS in and received receipt confirmation. The VA received my NODs on 10 Jun 2019. I followed the Legacy process due to my decisions being prior to the 19 Feb 2019 cut off date for the new process. I have called the VA a couple times now. The NODs and supplemental claims show up in their system but are still not listed on VA.gov. First they tried to tell me that I filed incorrectly with the wrong forms until i reminded them of the guidance listed on the VA.gov website. They looked it, agreed with me and then added notes to that effect and said the NODs are being looked at. I have asked why they don't show up in VA.gov and they have no clue and send me to the Ebenefits help desk. Of course they state they have no visibility of VA.gov and I need to contact that help desk. I am unable to find any number or other contact info for them. Does anyone have the contact info for the VA.gov help desk?
  7. I get the same screen and slowly march toward the end. Mine was decided by a Judge on at the end of October, 2018 with several granted conditions and two remands. However, the grants have not been "granted" at the local VA level, and waiting for a new C&P on the two remands. Meanwhile, the little status bar now moves at a little under a hundred appeals less in front of me per day.....still have like 43K in front according to the status bar. Good luck! Mark
  8. As Geeky said, it is pretty hard to get a 10% rating. It's the VA ball and they make the rules. I have a 10% rating and I swear I can't hardly hear anything. You are aware that even with 0% for hearing, you get hearing aides as a S-C disability at no cost to you? My tinnitus isn't that hard so I usually can weather it out, but the VA is supposed to have some pretty awesome hearing aides that help to subdue the roaring in your head; you may want to check it out. And this is just my opinion, but from what I have seen, they are more apt to be lenient on this issue if you show it really bothers you and you go for extra assistance and later go for a re-eval. JMO, and I'm not saying it will happen to you but I've seen it. Veterans sometimes get a break going back after a few year. I mean, if your hearing isn't bad enough to get you comp every month but it is bad enough that hearing aides help you, not much of a leap to say you pretty close on the hearing table.
  9. Hi Eddie. Good advise from Bronc and Geeky. To go along with their theme, this is what I tell veterans looking for an increase. First, get a copy of your claim file (C-file). It can have stuff in there that is really supportive of conditions that you may have. Next, write down ALL the things or symptoms that you have. It would help if you had some one that would be objective to bounce things off of, like a wife or real close friend. Then start your research. Go to http://www.militarydisabilitymadeeasy.com/vadisabilityrating.html and see that some of those problem are, say like Geeky suggested as an example, hearing. Do you have any of those symptoms now on your list? If you do, then you check your c-file and see what it says about your hearing. You may have a hearing test results taken at boot camp; you may have one at discharge physical. If you do, compare is there a worsening of the hearing? If you do, you have 2 out of the 3 things you need for a claim. A service connected injury (degrade of your hearing), and a hearing disability now. The 3d thing, is called the nexus, that is, how can you connect the two? If you had a MOS that required you to be around noises, that would work. Or, if you can document an event or accident where you were exposed to a very loud noise, that could work. You have the 3 elements; we call it the Caluza Triangle. You do this type of research for every injury or disability on your list. Ok so it is a lot of work. My father told me that life isn't fair, it ain't easy, and there isn't a Santa Clause out there that is going to give you what you want. If you want something, get off your but and make it happen. So...
  10. What bronco said is good standard advice, do that for every claim and every condition. take note that as said you don't have to have every condition listed for each rating. It is a combination effect and there are analogous conditions/outcomes that can be used. On the issue of work. Do you work because you financially have too? have you lost/changed jobs frequently with periods of no work in between? were those situations caused by your conditions? If any of that is true, get your Social Security Records and lay statements saying you left/lost your job because of your conditions, to include in your claim. I am not picking on you but is this statement just worded wrong? you cannot be on active duty and be a compensated veteran. ------------ I will off a different track. Do you have episodes of dizziness/vertigo? There is a form of Vertigo related to migraines that occurs with or without a full blown migraine event. If you do have vertigo/dizziness do you also have tinnitus (usually but not always at 10%, and Hearing loss, even rated at 0%)? If you have all three then you can be rated for Meniere's and if you walk funny, like a drunk or drift all over the place, you should get 100% for Meniere's.
  11. to get anything above 0% SC on HL your puretone and Maryland CNC scores have to really be "bad". as someone with Cathedral Bells going off 24/7 I sympathize with you but the rating structure on hearing doesn't seem to have a modifier for Tinnitus but I would have to go back over it again to verify that. if this is in writing it might have some impact but the HL standard is pretty set in stone. If after a couple weeks post-exam the results are not in Blue Button, assuming this was done at the VA and not an outside contractor, then go to the Records Office in your VAMC, fill out the form and they will print them for you. Again that depends on your Puretone results and Maryland CNC results. They use multiple tables based on the readings in each ear, combine them and that gives a result. So without that data we really can't offer any solid opinions based on facts. I will say that if you are deaf as a post and can afford and IMO/IME then that might help you in an appeal.
  12. hi, In your GAD score items 1, 5,7 don't help you In your PHQ-9 score the statement you apparently made that being depressed "made it NOT at all difficult to do his work" doesn't help you. Remember that our compensation is based on the severity that our conditions have on our ability to earn an income based on the "average person" standard. Both your scores fall into the mild/moderate category. Depending on the other evidence in your file, these scores could suppress a higher rating. None of us can say with any certainty how a rater will evaluate your file. what is your SC percentage for Hearing Loss? is it so significant that you have a 10% or higher rating for HL? I would imagine that the higher the % of HL the more serious any secondary depression would be by VA standards. yes we know they don't think that hearing loss is real unless you are deaf as a post, and even then they don't like to pay for it.
  13. I am fairly sure that "implying" is not supposed to be the basis for a medical opinion. In fact it is also grammatically incorrect. I "imply", You "infer"; The speaker/writer makes a statement that the hearer/reader takes to mean something that is not directly stated. so you popped out of the womb and complained of rhinitis? again, what is the evidence of this. Go back to the Chris Attig link I shared. If during your induction you were not specifically examined by a competent medical professional on this issue and those results recorded with your entrance physical, then you were PRESUMED to be 100% "normal" without defect. That means this is direct service connection instead of aggravation of an NSC. As I mentioned if you don't have an in service nexus that might be a challenge. However you do document there is significant in-service medical evidence. This will be informative to see how it plays out. Good Luck
  14. in general you are correct that doing it the "simple way" would be easiest and best for us. However, you and I and every vet knows, that simple is not the VA way. He is obviously going to appeal this, which even under your "simple" way the VA could deny. We know that happens so it is not that far fetched. They denied me SC on a condition for over 5 years because the C&P doctor only used my first enlistment and put it in writing that she did so. The VA refused to change the status despite having their noses rubbed in their own words. Gathering the best evidence possible and introducing it at the appeal sets a stage for any later legal action. Remember Chris Attig's advice to include a challenge to the C&P examiners credentials in EVERY NOD? his reason as stated is because if you don't challenge at the first opportunity, the NOD, you can never raise that claim in later courts. The same applies to other evidence and challenges you might make to a VA rating. So while the "simple" way SHOULD be the best, fastest, and most sensible, we are dealing with the VA and none of those may apply.
  15. I appreciate you reading my draft. On the medical history, I checked problems with the nose. The entrance exam was typical, not special. They didn't do scans of my head. The only things noted by the doctor was eyeglasses/refractive error and acne. I checked the C&P exam and found this: I checked the award letter and found this: That's a big jump from showing my nose was normal when I joined to meeting the maximum 30% criteria when I got out.
  16. Financially, yes. The original combined rating was 40% (20/10/10/10). Any increase would boost me to 50% from 1995 to 2008, so retro potential is good.
  17. Thanks to VAF for the source for the original. I couldn't get it to download in an XLS format. 'ipb'; still opened in Excel.
  18. Depression secondary to hearing loss possible percentage???
  19. I was recently rated 10% disability for Tinnitus and 0% for hearing loss. Would it be worth it to try and push for hearing loss also or is it a lost cause? My Tinnitus totally sucks with constant ringing 24/7 365 but my hearing is definitely affected by this too and the audiologist made that statement after my hearing test. For some reason I am not able to view my hearing test results on the VA site and the audiologist said the VA would share them with me but so far they have not. I'll be reaching out to them more for a copy of the results but what I really want to know is it even worth pushing for hearing loss if the VA has already put me a 0%? Thank you in advance.
  20. Many of us have experience. My first question is, "are you working full time?" If you work full time, its gonna be tough to get 100 percent..real tough. Remember, VA compensation is to pay you for "loss" of your ability to earn an income. Ok, lets say you are not working. I dont want to answer your questions for you, but it will save time if I assume you are not working. File for an increase and order a copy of your cfile, if you dont have access to VBMS via a VSO or attorney. (Or consider enlisting the services of a representative that does have access to VBMS.) Write down the symptoms you need for the next higher rating. In the instance of PTSD, the critieria for mental health disorders in the 100 percent category is symptoms of "total occupational and social impairment". The criteria then lists some "examples" of such an impairment. Its my opinion the regulations examples are to "throw you off". (Stuff like not remembering your own name). Yea, you might be one of those guys who cant remember his own name, but you managed to sign in under your handle at hadit..so I guess you remember your name. YOU DONT HAVE TO HAVE EVERY SYMPTOM IN THE CRITERIA TO GE T BENEFITS. Again, the example of not remembering your name. You dont have to have forgotten your name to get 100 percent benefits. Instead, check your cfile for documentation that you: 1. Are not working. 2. Are not working due to SC difficulties, such as PTSD. If you have documentation of some "anti social" behaviour in your file, that will help you get benefits. Example: You get mad at your boss, storm out, throw a fit and slam doors on the way out. Examples like this are demonstrting a boss may not want to have you around. Now, dont make stuff up like this, ever. If it happens, then make sure its documented, but dont ever try to fake stuff, as these are the things "reductions" in the future are made of, even if you do get your benefits. What you dont want to do is "not share" those bad incidents with your doc. If you got arrested for a fight with your spouse, tell the doc and let him document it. Dont be suprised you dont get your increase if you dont want to talk to the doc about your fight with your spouse, and getting hauled off by the police. If you want VA benefits, you have to open up to your doc.
  21. Thanks Patton, Will you keep us updated on your appeal also? We all can learn from your experience, and maybe it will help some of the Veterans that have served our country that say the hell with the VA- They can take the claim and shove it.
  22. Or, you can do it it the "simple" way: Get a copy of that C and P exam (show them the SOC showing you fialed to report for exam), and send VA the exam, asking them to reopen via 38 cfr 3.156 b, reopen due to new and relevant evidence. Explain to the doc the VA apparently lost the exam. Its okay if you write a letter (in with your 3.156b) explaining you did attend the exam and show proof of the exam report. Its more important to win your benefits, not so important to "prove" to VA you are right. A letter demonstrating you "proved" you were right wont buy groceries for your family, while cash from benefit payments will. Its not all that necessary to prove VA made a mistake, they make hundreds of those. Fixing the problem is much better than trying to prove to Va you are right. Sometimes, I like to be wrong so that others can be right. "Somebody" needs to step down so that VA execs hyper inflated egos can pop on their own.
  23. Bernard there is excellent advise here. some innovative out-of-the-box thinking. I got to tip my hat to Geeky though; James Bond stuff. Those of us that know him realize he's not just another pretty face!
  24. I am a veteran in the Air Force. I am 70% disabled for PTSD and 50% disabled for migraines. My symptoms have worsened and I believe I deserve a 100% for my symptoms I just need some help. Is there any advice out there with someone with experience.
  25. Rallen, I failed a number of times before learning how to successfully submit a claim. The key is to educate yourself and never give up. You have taken the first step in being successful. I am still fighting the battle but one day I will win the battle. Best of luck, Patton
  26. Keep in mind that asbestos is a cause of mesothelioma. Those trust funds are irrespective of VA determination and VA cannot reduce your award just because of a meso award. If that applies to you, then apply.
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