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marathonjon last won the day on August 2

marathonjon had the most liked content!

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About marathonjon

  • Rank
    E-3 Seaman

Previous Fields

  • Service Connected Disability
  • Branch of Service
    Air Force

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  1. It's not a link; it's an attachment to the forum post. When I click on it, Firefox asks me if I want to open it in Firefox or download it. Both options still work for me. Your popup or ad blocker may be preventing it from opening or downloading. As the site admin, you should be able to figure out what the issue is.
  2. @broncovet Thanks for the advice, makes perfect sense. I'm looking at a retro of only about $3600 (the difference between 80% and 90% for one year). Winning a six-figure retro must have been sweet (and taken forever)!
  3. @broncovet The decision was effective 31 March 2020, so it's under a year. So how do I file a NOD under the AMA? The decision letter says I have two choices, Supplemental or HLR. I read somewhere that HLR can't be used to request an earlier effective date, so I guess it has to be Supplemental? But what's the new and relevant evidence? Thanks for your help! My VSO is useless.
  4. The VA changed the minimum rating for painful motion of the shoulder from 10 to 20% on 23 May 2016. I only just found about it this year. I requested that they change my rating via a claim for an increase in benefits, which the VA granted, but they made the effective date the same as my file date (31 March 2020). According to 38 CFR §3.114(a)(3): "If a claim is reviewed at the request of the claimant more than 1 year after the effective date of the law or VA issue, benefits may be authorized for a period of 1 year prior to the date of receipt of such request.” Therefore, my effective date
  5. @Buck52 Yes, I was at home and the "exam" was conducted by video. The doctor asked me some questions about history, functional impact, etc., and based the rest of his DBQ and opinion partly on an independent medical exam that I obtained (I already have a copy of his C&P exam report). I say partly because he cherry-picked the parts he could use to justify denial of service connection and ignored the rest of the IME's opinion. He even made up a few things for good measure that he neither asked me about nor took out of my medical records.
  6. As of May 28, 2020, "VA resumed in-person C&P exams in locations where it was safe to do so," which is almost the entire country (https://benefits.va.gov/compensation/claimexam.asp). This seems to apply only to contractors, though, as I had a telehealth C&P exam done by one of my local VA clinics on July 16th. I was concerned about this because it was for a muscle condition - how could they evaluate strength or ROM by video? I was right to be concerned, that but's a different story. What I'd like to share here is what I found in researching telehealth C&P exams. In addition
  7. Lemuel, I'm not an expert on C&P exams, but I've been slogging through the M21-1, which addresses the exams in Part III, Subpart iv, Chapter 3. Section A of this chapter mentions several tools for inputting examination requests. I'm sure they are internal tools that are only accessible by the RO and the examiner. You can find this section here: https://www.knowva.ebenefits.va.gov/system/templates/selfservice/va_ssnew/help/customer/locale/en-US/portal/554400000001018/content/554400000015809/M21-1,-Part-III,-Subpart-iv,-Chapter-3,-Section-A---Examination-Requests-Overview. As I said, I
  8. This is the latest Compensation & Pension (C&P) Clinicians Guide dated 20180719. The only other one I've seen is dated 2002, including the one on this website and the VA website. I got this from my claims agent, who got it from the VA. VA Compensation & Pension (C&P) Clinicians Guide 2 Final Corrected 20180719.pdf
  9. I actually wrote the Chairman and ranking Democratic member of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs about how difficult it was to find the VA chain of command or who to complain to. I will send them another email about the quality of service received from my RO. I've made a little progress since my last post. I found another VSO rep, and he gave me some good advice. Since I live overseas, all correspondence regarding C&P exams is supposed to go through the US Embassy. I moved from one country to another and notified the VA, but they failed to notify my new embassy. They assure m
  10. I'm in a Catch-22 situation and wonder if anyone has advice on the next step I should take. I filed an appeal to the VA's decision on my disability claim, choosing to go the DRO route. As a veteran living overseas, my case is handled by the Pittsburgh RO. After almost 2 years, I finally got a letter from them stating I needed to get another C&P exam. I made arrangements to get the exam at the air base where I receive my medical treatment, but the catch is that they will do the exam only if they receive the request directly from the VARO. I've sent 5 requests to the RO either by fax or
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