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  • 14 Questions about VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims

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    When a Veteran starts considering whether or not to file a VA Disability Claim, there are a lot of questions that he or she tends to ask. Over the last 10 years, the following are the 14 most common basic questions I am asked about ...
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    You’ve just been rated 100% disabled by the Veterans Affairs. After the excitement of finally having the rating you deserve wears off, you start asking questions. One of the first questions that you might ask is this: It’s a legitimate question – rare is the Veteran that finds themselves sitting on the couch eating bon-bons … Continue reading

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redmitch

agent orange related diabetes mellitus type II BVA

Question

I was diagnosed with Diabetes Type II in October of 2010 and filed a claim for disability benefits related to Agent Orange in January 2011.  I was denied about one month later for failure to prove that I ever served in Vietnam as part of the AO presumption "nexus".  I filed another claim for diabetes in 2014 after receiving "buddy letters" and was awarded 10% rating for diabetes.  I discussed the earlier claim with my representative and was advised to file a NOD which was denied.  I have just recently filed a BVA and received a letter today stating that I am being offered a videoconference.  I have several questions.  First and foremost, if the original claim is approved as my argument is that since I was a Vietnamese Linguist in the Air Force Security Service there were no records kept of my Temporary Duty Assignment in Vietnam as was stated in one of the letters later received.  My argument is that based on the application I filed stating I was in country and describing my duties the VA should have dug deeper to determine why my service record was silent.  WILL ORIGINAL CLAIM APPROVAL MEAN THAT I WILL BE PAID RETROACTIVE TO THE DATE I FILED THE ORIGINAL CLAIM IN JANUARY 2011 OR WILL I ONLY BE PAID BASED ON THE APPEAL DATE? 

SECOND:  should I draft a statement or affidavit or some form of document since if the hearing is a videoconference I will not have the opportunity to present any written documentation.

THIRD:  are there people available to help me prepare for this hearing and represent me as the representative I have is stationed at a local VA and is extremely busy.

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"I have several questions.  First and foremost, if the original claim is approved as my argument is that since I was a Vietnamese Linguist in the Air Force Security Service there were no records kept of my Temporary Duty Assignment in Vietnam as was stated in one of the letters later received.  My argument is that based on the application I filed stating I was in country and describing my duties the VA should have dug deeper to determine why my service record was silent. "

My daughter also was a Vietnamese linguist ( Top Secret Classified) but had TDY in Vietnam after the war.

She was told that, if she ever filed a VA claim, her records would be declassified for VA purposes.

However her only claim with VA was for Educational benefits and they screwed that up right from the git go but fixed it FAST.

 

"My argument is that based on the application I filed stating I was in country and describing my duties the VA should have dug deeper to determine why my service record was silent. "

Indeed they should have!!!!

" I filed another claim for diabetes in 2014 after receiving "buddy letters" and was awarded 10% rating for diabetes.  I discussed the earlier claim with my representative and was advised to file a NOD which was denied.  I have just recently filed a BVA and received a letter today stating that I am being offered a videoconference. "

I am going to assume they used the 2014 claim date for the retro EED (earliest effective date) ???

That means in my opinion the past denials contained CUE...a clear and unmistakable error.

Can you scan and attach here ( cover C file # name) -prior to scanning-

both of those denials? We need to see the actual VA verbiage as well as the evidence they used and the bogus rationale they used as well.

"SECOND:  should I draft a statement or affidavit or some form of document since if the hearing is a videoconference I will not have the opportunity to present any written documentation."

Possibly that is a very good idea and will help you prepare for the Videoconference  but the past denials will help shape it,.however anyone TS classified by the Mil should never even  need an affidavit for the VA. .

"THIRD:  are there people available to help me prepare for this hearing and represent me as the representative I have is stationed at a local VA and is extremely busy."

I can help you here at hadit and others will chime in with help too

 

WILL ORIGINAL CLAIM APPROVAL MEAN THAT I WILL BE PAID RETROACTIVE TO THE DATE I FILED THE ORIGINAL CLAIM IN JANUARY 2011 OR WILL I ONLY BE PAID BASED ON THE APPEAL DATE? 

Can you clarify something...........when did the last denial happen?

And when did the VSO tell you to file a NOD? A NOD must be filed within one year of a decision.

And when did you "file" a BVA Appeal ( I assume you mean the I-9)

 " I was denied about one month later for failure to prove that I ever served in Vietnam as part of the AO presumption "nexus".  I filed another claim for diabetes in 2014 after receiving "buddy letters" and was awarded 10% rating for diabetes."

Believe me in one month or two or even a few, VA does not have the time to really check a vet's SMRS, and 201 file. I assume they never even tried to get them then.

When I filed in 2010  my IHD death under Nehmer ( My dead husband had DMII and IHD from Vietnam) the VA denied the claim right away saying he didnt have IHD in Vietnam or evidence of heart disease in any of his service medial  records..

I whipped a CUE on those idiots within days, telling them No Vietnam Vet probably had IHD in their SMRs. Most of them were kids.Immediately they withdrew the denial, and after losing the claim at Togus, then sending in to some RO out west, they finally did it right at the Phila. Nehmer Division.

 

I am sure they made many errors on those denials you got and the only way to recover the proper retro is VIA a CUE claim which I can help with if I see the denials.

A CUE for more retro however would depend on any rating you got, as NSC on the DMII in those denials. 

But it looks to me like they never even had time to obtain ANY of your service records. I bet you had no C & P exam either.But that would stand in your favor if they never rated the DMII at all.(note to myself if denials have CUE potential)

Still I am making some WAGS here ( wild Ass guesses) and the verbiage and rationale they used in those past denials will show whether or not you can obtain more retro.

10% for DMII sucks. What is the breakdown of the 60% you get now.

I heard from a good friend just the other day- the head Nehmer lawyer at NVLSP ( NVLSP won the Nehmer decisions)

They usually dont take cases until they get to the CAVC, and he told me they have been overwhelmed as well as everyone else,to include the VSOs out there who really know what they are doing.But I will keep him in mind, if you need to contact them for help.I think we here can provide the help you need- however.

I consider myself an expert on AO  issues. Not bragging at all... just got a lot of expertise via the hell the VA put me through, not to mention the fact that AO was one of the deadliest weapons of mass destruction we have ever used in our military. It is still causing the deaths of Vietnam vets.

My husband and I were in the original AO settlement fund. Maybe 1991?

I studied all I could on AO since then.

 

 

 

Edited by Berta

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forgot to ask----- when you were in Intel school  ( my daughters Mil  Intel school took 2 years) wouldn't that be noted in your  201 Personnel file????? as well as all the FBI stuff????? Was it DLI ?

I bet  they never even attempted to get your Military records.....or even if they did, they didnt know what DLI meant.

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The "Offer" from the BVA, was that for an Informal Evidence Conference or an actual BVA Vidio Hearing? Was an exact Date specified?

Regardless, sending in any "New & Material Evidence" could result in your Appeal being sent back to the RO so that the New Evidence could be reviewed and considered. An SSOC would have to be completed, all very time-consuming.  Could you post a redacted copy of your 2014 Award that apparently granted "Boots on the Ground Nam?"      Semper Fi

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