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  2. smc math

    Buck- SMCs are not ratings, per se. They are additional entitlements above and beyond a 100% (or TDIU) rating based solely on a specific subset of disabilities that create a higher level of disability and incur more extensive need for aid from a spouse or caregiver. Review the actual requirements for each succeedingly higher SMC entitlement and you can see how more disability (SC, of course) allows advance to a higher SMC. Sadly, as we all know, SMC is the least understood of all VA benefits. I've talked with raters and tried to impress on them why my client is entitled to a higher rating (especially r(1) and r(2) . I get the 1,000 yard stare. They profess ignorance on the subject and defer to (and swear by) the computerized drivel that comes out of the M 21 Cray computer telling them what you get. They do admit they're ignorant so that's a beginning. VSOs can't even spell SMC let alone tell you what it's for and why. Unfortunately, a lot of VA attorneys tell me they too have a hard time figuring it out. I guess I lucked out on brains because it seems like it's as easy as chopping wood. As most of you know, we Vietnam Vets have really heavy duty disabilities and many involved combat injuries. The majority of my clients are SMC situations based for the most part on lost or irrevocably injured/amputated appendages. It's what I know. I was there for two years and witnessed what happened to myself and others. It makes it far easier to help someone when you've walked in their shoes. There was a time way back from the 1970s to the 90s when a lot of VA raters were Veterans and understood the rigors of service and the "suck it up" mentality that allowed you to keep walking on a broken ankle in spite of the pain so you didn't look like a xxxxx. Now it's the M 21 assembly manual for idiots on how to deny or lowball you. Always remember. Ignore the M 21. Don't quote it. Don't cite to it. Ignore it. Pretend it doesn't exist. There are only two things that control your claim- 38 USC and how the VA Secretary translates it into 38 CFR. If you get down in the dirt with them on M 21 language, they'll tie you in knots and say the M 21 won't permit it. The M 21 is about a year behind most of the time. It's a set of instructions like how to assemble an Ikea bookshelf. It's not a statute or regulation entitled to any legal deference so do not accept its premise or validity. Period. Got it?
  3. I'm not sure jfrei?? Let us know what the say? Allan you are correct. however if the IU was given using the extra scheduler 38 CFR 4.17 (b) with the rating criteria & never reach the 100% no a Veteran is not suppose to work at all. Now a 100% Vet on IU can work under those conditions you mention but even he is victimize to the reductions, this is why I don't trust the VA with all their B.S. Some times they (VA) will tell us yes or something we think is good to hear... and all of a sudden we get a proposal to reduce letter in the mail...VA is not binding over the phone if they tell you some thing and even on paper they can come up with ''Typing Error'' So there not labial for stating something to us. only if its on an official record with VA we can use as evidence in our favor if it happens to be in the veterans favor.
  4. So apparently they raised my TBI to 100% scheduler with future exams dated back to May 3. Ok but not Permanent and Total I also have an appealed decision granted on June that shows they did give me P and T already for the secondary and TBI combined. The decision gets mailed out tomorrow... I'm not appealing what I was already given in an appeal decision already they made at the Regional office in June are you telling me they can't see what they've already decided they can't ever get things right the first or second time enough already sorry my only venting tool
  5. Today
  6. Buck, aren't there 2 exceptions for those who are TDIU concerning earned income? Something "sheltered" work/income, and work that falls below the poverty line? Correct me if I'm wrong. Allan 2-2-0 HUAH!
  7. Please post any questions as the office of case management is calling me today to answer the questions I had before the number was shut off. Now my 100% rating is scheduler P and T my IU rating which lasted about 10 months is moot am I correct? But Buck52 I will answer your question later today why they are not seperated in my case and why it maybe more benefificial to keep them together.
  8. Drain the swamp! Allan 2-2-0 HUAH!
  9. C&P concerns

    I totally agree I mean if this is what they used to make their decision why not pay us back with the choice funds...
  10. SSDI PSYD/Physical examination schedule

    That was quick I hope it goes well for you.
  11. SMC Q

    I'm just wondering is there anyone in this group who actually had Q? What was it for I'm just curious...
  12. https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/USVAOIG/bulletins/1b87ed1 if your a TBI Veteran read the above link...as to how some veterans was not informed of the higher SMC 's I.G Got on Detroit R.O. a**
  13. C&P concerns

    I think we veterans should request our IMO $$ BACK when they approve us this is hard $$ to come by for the Veteran in most cases anywayz.
  14. C&P concerns

    I whole heartily agree with Ms berta post above she nailed it to the wall in plain English. It could not have been laid out any better in her post. Years ago An IMO is what it took for me to win my claim over a VA C&P Examiner that tried his best for me not get my benefits and mess up my claim for increase. Well he did cause VA to send me the old dreaded proposal to reduce letter, However Through the help from Ms T bird hadit and a few members like Ms berta and a Elder member that is not on here anymore name'' Flip H'' helping me the IMO with a specialist is what convince the VA that there VA Examiner they hired was full of sh*** and the specialist made him look just plan stupid. he went into full details about his medical opinion and why and laid it all out there as to where the VA had no course but to approve. IMO's Are expensive especially when a specialist is called in but it well worth every penny.
  15. Veterans like me and jfrei & Countless other veterans out there are getting the shaft b/c veterans on IU are not suppose to be working or make the (VA SGI 12.400. Per Year) which in 2016/ 2017 was changed to (11.400 per year) I would not jeopardize my IU reduction by working even if its ok to do so, I do not trust the VA as far as I can throw them.
  16. I don't know who to call and ask this question to? Peggy will not know and some of the upper VSO will not know. I suppose I could write my R.O. '' ON A STATEMENT OF CASE'' form and ask the IU be made moot and rate me as the 90% and 70% rating accordingly ?? any Ideas? As I could be all wrong here!
  17. Well I was thinking that when a veteran is rated high enough to qualify for the SMC with the separate & distinct S.C.disability This is an added benefit for the Veteran (and for good cause) ok with the separate S.C. Disability that is combined in his (Already S.C. Ratings) Example 90% Combined rating that don't meet the 100% rating ok now the veteran can't do the work he was trained to do or went to school for because of his S.C. Disability..ok the VA says lets give him IU so he can make it with his family (this is a good thing) However when a Veteran has other S.C. Disability's that arise later and is S.C. For them then they combined the total ratings ( That is Mandatory) In my case the 90% was combined with the 70% hence a 100% schedule rating & met the criteria for the SMC -S H.B. As I have the same thing Jfrei just put up. (different disability's) '' You have a 100% final degree disability'' so is the VA saying this give us 100% schedule rating now? And IU is Moot?
  18. C&P concerns

    The best way to deal with a lousy C & P exam is what veterans do not often want to hear..... They need to get an Independent Medical Opinion from a doctor with enough expertise in the field of the disability to combat the faulty C & P exam. They must follow the IMO criteria here at hadit and attach a CV (Curriculum Vitae) and give a strong medical rationale..... I dont give advise on IMOs without having done that myself. My lay medical opinion and evidence was enough to win a FTCA case, but that is only because I dealt with OGC lawyers and VACO and these high level VA people can read.( and I was a very agressive claimant,keeping on my issues all the time ) In those days I could not find any IMo doctor or even any lawyer would would help me. But for my DMII AO claim I got 3 IMOs. 4 thousand for 2 of them and a freebee, and I knocked down their last C & P myself and sent my rebuttal to the BVA-and BVA concurred with me. I have not been able to comprehend WHY veterans have not fought aggressively against the VA's C & P system. It is an utter conflict of interest ( as they get paid by the VA) and of course their exam results are the basis of countless denials amd therefore a main reason for the backlog. As anyone can see by reading BVA awards (RO awards are not public), many denials are overturned by a Real 'non Va -doctor's opinion. Is that fair? Of course not because many of those opinions are very costly. But until vets themselves start complaining directly to Shulkin and Trump and the H/S veterans Affairs Committees and to any Congressman/woman or Senator who sits on those committees or the sub committees on Disability, the VA wil continue to deny claims, solely based on a VA medical opinion. When I knocked down the last posthumous C & P exam (which the BVA had ordered) The BVA had asked for a cardio opinion, and I then paid for another IMO, and stressed to the BVA in an immediate rebuttal, that the opinion was done by a PA and the BVA already knew ( from my past FTCA/1151 awards,) I knew more cardio than the PA did and that his opinion was too speculative. I didnt have the 4th IMO yet. Soon after sending my rebuttal to the BVA ,a big brown BVA envelope came and I firgured it belonged to someone else ( I had already received 2 decisions from BVA over the years and had to contact their POAs because the decision was not for my claim.One was an award but the other was a denial and I emailed the POA how they could fight the denial.) A few days later I finally opened the BVA envelope and was shocked because it was an award, for my AO DMII claim! I called the forensic firm who had sent my IMO stuff to their cardio doc and they refunded about half of my fee, because the IMO had not been prepared yet and I didnt need it. When will veterans ever unite and decide to do something serious about these lousy C & P exams??????
  19. I haven't spent much time on this topic but. I think what you're looking to do might be classified as a Non-Starter issue. If a Vet could actually maintain employment garnering in excess of the VA SGI ($12,400 per yr), his IU Rating (even if his CSC's are classified as T & P) would be up for a Reduction. Keep in mind, with an IU T & P Rating, the IU itself isn't T & P its the Vets IU Qualifying Individual SC's that are considered permanent with no chance of improvement. An IU Rating is always subject to "Earned Income/Employment" evidence demonstrating ability to work. That's why the VA requirement of the Yrly IU Anniversary Date VA Income/Employment verification form. When I received (12/2015) my SC SA 50% increase to 100%, my 90% IU T & P No future Exams Rating was changed automatically to 100% SC P & T NFE, no mention on any of the 01/2016 E-Ben Letters/Forms of my prior IU Award.
  20. C&P concerns

    Roger That 63 C It's known as the ''Hamster Wheel'' It is very Unfortunate In this case about all you can do is keep your appeals going and contact a Repeatable Attorney with Veteran Law Experience If you have did all the other things like contact the WH # or contact your Congressman/Senator. you could email the VA Secretary Office and complain to who ever gives you a reply. And ask for a review of your case. Be civil /polite in your email.
  21. Am I Wasting My Time?

    SeaBee Wife- I hope I have not misunderstood your post----- our advice here is always free....but the hadit site will accept donations. The photo of your husband is wonderful !.... My daughter , a veteran herself, made me a beautiful collage of my husband's medals and ribbons, and 3 photos of him- one in his Altar Boy garment,on the last Sunday before he left for Quantico, and one in his USMC utilities with his mother, prior to Vietnam and one from the BT book they get after their training....an innocent kid.....the parents had to sign papers for him--he was only 17, to be enlisted. About 10-15 years ago I had to close my personal contact info here. Too many problems. Others here however have their emails available I think. There is a downside to being a veteran's advocate.....as well as being a widow. I had a terrible experience just a few months ago, and I thought those days were over, because someone-this is an isolated farm community but I am 20 miles from a VAMC-someone locally got my contact info from my church's directory and I received one of the worse phone calls I ever got. It was all triggered by the fact that I am a veteran's advocate and a widow ....Long story....I took action against them but more is yet to come..... We ,as widows, have to be very careful. I have noticed that guests can read our profiles and possibly can get our emails there if they have open emails here. Vets , here ,as well must be careful of that.I hope everyone here has very good security on their PCs. As soon as the Secretary makes a decision on any new VA presumptives in November I will post that here in our AO forum. I dont think HBP will be on the list ( then again I am still surprised that IHD is) but feel CVA, if ischemic in nature, should definitely be. At some point the VA will send you a letter if they more evidence or information. You can register at the ebenefits site and possibly keep updated that way on your claim.
  22. I'm a little confused but I'm should just be done trying or seperate the TBI and PTSD now combined at 100% Permanent and Total. My diagnosed chronic adjustment disorder which was what I claimed and dx at the C&P is gone very eager to get this packet to share to all what happened... so my IUs moot? And it still shows I'm getting SMC S and will know why hopefully sooner then later...maybe now I can win my SSDI claim??
  23. smc math

    AN, thanks for the guided trip down the SMC Rabbit Hole. Much easier to read this time.
  24. Secondary Action Required?

    I agree with John999. A layperson, such as yourself (assuming you are not an MD) can not rebut medical evidence, only medical evidence can be used to rebut medical evidence, that is, an IMO/IME. You can, however, request a correction of errors in your medical records with 38 cfr 3.179. If the VA refuses to correct errors in your medical records, you can appeal that issue. Absent your appeal, the medical evidence is presumed valid. https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/38/1.579 You are "not competent" to make diagnosis, treat your own illnesses, nor prescirbe your own meds. You are also not comepetent to enter medical records on your . behalf, only under the supervision of a doctor can you enter stuff into your medical records. That is, you can say, "hey doc, will you put that in my records", and he can choose whether or not to comply with your request. I dont recommend you try to alter your medical records other than have a doctor do same, the use of thee reg above, or another IMO/IME. The VA wont award benefts based on your statements made in conflict with the medcial evidence. If you accept that, and use the tools I mentioned, you can change your records, but your statements alone wont suffice.
  25. It all goes with my philosophy: Tell VA the truth, and then you can sleep well if they send you money, that they wont be able to take it back. But if you lie, even once, they discredit your entire testimony. I have seen that in BVA decisions. Once the BVA catches you in a lie, you are done. I have trouble sometimes remembering dates. "When" did something happen? Gee, I dotn know maybe it was 2 years ago, or was it 3? If I was forced to give a date that I was unsure of, I gave a range: It was 3-10 years ago, kind of a thing. Whenever I could, I looked up the date. Such as Dr. P, on an exam dated 11-13-98, stated, "The Veteran.....:" Another thing I do, is I generally do NOT offer VA my opinion. Instead, I cite a regulation or doctors statement that supports my position. The reason I do not offer my opinion is because, first of all, my opinion is obvious: I want the award, and I think I deserve it. However, you see, VA always thinks they know more than I do. That is fine by me. I love it when my opponent underestimates me. So, I dont offer my opinion. I state their decision is in conflict with the facts. For example, if Im disputing the effective date, I will cite the general effective date rule, and then go to show how the evidence supports my postion that I deserve an earlier effective date, like this: "The RO decision dated 07-13-2017 stated that the "facts found" demonstrated I first applied in March, 2004. However, in a docement dated "06-07-2002" . in the RBA, the Veteran made reference to "I am unable to work". Then I would explain the VA is required to send the Veteran a TDIU form, or, if the VA does not send this form, the effective date will be the date of the filing of the informal claim (then I cite a bva decision saying same). By not offering my opininon but by citing evidence in my cfile, and case law, the VA can not just tell me Im worng..they have to give a reasons and bases as to why what I stated is not correct. Lawyers often appeal a Board decision on a failure to give adequate reasons and bases. If I ask for a lollipop, they should tell me why I cant have a lolipop. Then, someone else says, "Gee, the regulations and evidence the Veteran cited are spot on". We have to give him this. This has happened to me multiple times. My VARO denies first, then looks later.
  26. By the way, I sent in a request for a waiver in the overpayment, arguing that the backlos was not my fault, and that the VA recovering this money would be a financial hardship on me. Basically, I did my part, by telling VA I was now married and my household income went up, so the burden is off my shoulders. I report it, they process my report. My waiver was approved, and they explained that was because it was not due to the Veteran. The VA went ahead and paid me pension, and I can safely assume when VA sends me money its mine to keep, that VA is not making me a loan. That is, of course, when I properly reported a change of househould income and dependent status. They made it clear if I had not reported this change of income, that I would owe VA money...because Vets are required to report promplty a change in dependency/income in the case of pension. But, since I did so, as requred, I was not required to pay them back money they continued to pay me because of a long processing time.
  27. Buck, The VA wont "mess" with your rating...that would require a new decision. Im pretty sure there is not a seperate form to file to get them to terminate your IU rating and make you 100 percent schedular. We used to do almost everything on a 21-4138, but Chris Attig does not recommend those...he recommends you type a letter and say what you want, then, at the bottom, certify that the above is true and correct and sign and date it. Years ago, I asked VA in a 21-4138 to stop my pension and pay me my VA comp instead, when I got married, as my wife was then a nurse and earning over the poverty level, so I knew I was no longer eligible for pension due to household income. It took them a couple years, but they did that, and then sent me a letter saying I owed them the difference between pension and compensation (since I was at 40 percent at the time). For that reason, I recommend a 21-4138 as it is a "catch all" form when there is not a regular form for it, when you sign and date it, it becomes official. If you did file a 21-4138, and it was properly signied and dated, it should become evidence of an earlier effective date, if that becomes applicable. Of course, you send it to the evidence intake center, certified mail. If you want to make sure this happens, in the unlikely event that your IU gets "cut", then send an IRIS email in about 6 months asking the status of your IU/schedular change request/request for an increase.
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