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x020574

Second Class Petty Officers
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Everything posted by x020574

  1. Just received my wifes ChampVA package today, I sent a one page application in approx. 2-3 weeks ago. They set her eligibility date back to Aug 1, 2013 (when I was awarded TDIU). Here is a link to the application but I'm surprised you did not receive one in your BBE. http://www.va.gov/hac/forbeneficiaries/champva/apply.asp You should have also received pamphlets discussing addition (optional) life insurance, Chapter 35 (education) benefits for dependents. There should be a statement in the package somewhere that discusses your eligible to be reimbursed for any copays for meds retro back to your award date of TDIU. But.... you have to request it!!! I called the 800 number to get in touch with the finance and billing department and told them I would like to recoup some of this money since my effective date - tell them you would like them to perform an audit on your prescription copays and it should include travel reimbursements as well. As J said above, you need to do this right away - I don't recall what the time-frame was but I could see how many veterans could have missed out on this benefit. It will take at least 4 weeks to several months before there reimburse you. Don't forget to check on any State/Govt benefits you may be entitled to due to T & P, I think there is a link on this board that will take you to your state's Veterans web page. Congratulations!
  2. I doubt anyone could give you anything other than a WAG... that is just the way it is. I would suggest you get together with your VSO and ask to file for a hardship... bring proof of Bill Collection, Bankruptcy, and such that show you are in a financial hardship. I think you did about everything else.
  3. Go figure... My claim closed over a week ago, got the BBE 2 days later, got the retro yesterday. Then today I get another BBE in the mailbox, telling me they received an incomplete claim 01/10/2014 and if I want to process my Fully Developed Claim I need to submit a 526ez. I called Peggy, their answer was there isn't a claim and sometimes the system does that and that I should throw the correspondence away - Brilliant! Best of luck to you Street!
  4. Thank you Berta, You have certainly given me a lot of homework :) My VA Hem/Onc doctor says nobody knows what causes PNH, but what we do know is that it is acquired and not inherited. I believe you are correct, PD 680 sounds very familiar... I am 62yrs old and this was 40+ years ago. I have met one vet that is SC, but he had anemia issues in service. I will keep you posted, I also want to get a second opinion from a private Hem/Onc. Although the test making the dx is considered the Golden Standard, I believe it's call flow cytometry ???
  5. I do have a Story and then a Question: Story part: I recently learned I have a illness with called Paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH)it is a rare disease in which red blood cells break down earlier than normal. I have read that benzene can cause these types of symptoms. I was a Jet Engine Mechanic from 1970-74 so I had 4 yrs of exposure to this stuff - but can it rear it's ugly head 40 years later? We use to use a cleaning solution (I don't recall the name but it was P-something). We used it in-shop to clean grease and carbon from internal engine parts. Being young and stupid, we used to joke about how it gave us a buzz. Also a concern was my extensive exposure to jet engine JP4 fumes. When in -shop maintenance was performed (we actually took J75 Pratt-Whitney engines apart, inspected and rebuilt) There were days when one would get drench with JP4 when underneath and dropping a fuel pump. My fatigues and boots reeked of JP4 no matter how many times I washed them. Question part: I was 90% scheduler and recently got TDIU 100%. I would consider putting in a claim for this if I thought it would fly... what do you think my chances would be? It's not about the money, it's more I'm concerned about what I can provide for my wife if I were to pass on as a result of one of my illness. I used to think it will be the IHD that will take me someday and that I am SC for, but now PNH can get nasty fast and that I am not SC for. 71M10 - thank you for the advice!
  6. Just wanted to let you know I was able to get this resolved, I got the BBE on Sat and I am now 100% TPIU. And they did accept my proof of my eBennies print screen of the logging of activities. They awarded me the effective date of Jul/2013(the day I uploaded my application). They even gave me a little extra by granting me SMC-S (housebound). Between SSDI and VA 100% comp I can sleep a little better. I do have a Story and then a Question: Story part: I recently learned I have a illness with called Paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH)it is a rare disease in which red blood cells break down earlier than normal. I have read that benzene can cause these types of symptoms. I was a Jet Engine Mechanic from 1970-74 so I had 4 yrs of exposure to this stuff - but can it rear it's ugly head 40 years later? We use to use a cleaning solution (I don't recall the name but it was P-something). We used it in-shop to clean grease and carbon from internal engine parts. Being young and stupid, we used to joke about how it gave us a buzz. Also a concern was my extensive exposure to jet engine JP4 fumes. When in -shop maintenance was performed (we actually took J75 Pratt-Whitney engines apart, inspected and rebuilt) There were days when one would get drench with JP4 when underneath and dropping a fuel pump. Question part: I was 90% scheduler and recently got TDIU 100%. I would consider putting in a claim for this if I thought it would fly... what do you think my chances would be? It's not about the money, it's more I'm concerned about what I can provide for my wife if I were to pass on as a result of one of my illness. I used to think it will be the IHD that will take me someday and that I am SC for, but now PNH can get nasty fast and that I am not SC for. Lastly, thank you all that respond to my CUE/NOD for IU.
  7. Thank you Berta - This is a copy and paste form my eBenefits Account Activity history - 07/18/2013 8:40 AM, Updated: ClaimId: 28896344, DocumentId: {A596A9A0-F7AC-40E9-9FC1-D23435C404F1}, THOMAS xxxx, Successful I usally do send it to the VSO ,to submit unfortunetly for me I didn't do that this time... I sent an IRIS email coorespondence and spoke to someone one the phone, all they could do was pass the information along... no big help there! While my claim was open, I got a call from the RO asking me if I wanted to add TDIU to the claim and what disability was I claiming that prevented me from working. I told her Hearing difficulties and Depression. She sent me an application, I filled it out and uploaded about a week after I received it.
  8. Thanks to all that responded... Carlie - I reponded to your request to post the RD, also: 1. TDIU application was not reviewed, nor was it on the list of evidence. According to them I did not respond... not true. Had they read the application I feel strongly that it would have been approved... but with the VA one never knows! 2. They stated my disabilities claimed for TDIU were hearing and depression, which is correct. They did not speak of the MH in the dermination of TDIU, but they listed what was on my MH C&P exam and granted 70% on MH alone, which clearly indicates my inability to pursue gainful employment. The type of work they claim I can do is: (typical requirements of DBA from Monster.com) Description: Database Analyst Database Analyst Job Purpose: Maintains data storage and access by designing physical databases. Database Analyst Job Duties: Confirms project requirements by studying user requirements; conferring with others on project team. Maintains data dictionary by revising and entering definitions. Maintains client confidence and protects operations by keeping information confidential. Maintains technical knowledge by attending educational workshops; reviewing publications; establishing personal networks; participating in technical societies. Ensures operation of equipment by completing preventive maintenance requirements; following manufacturer's instructions; troubleshooting malfunctions; calling for repairs; evaluating new equipment and techniques. Contributes to team effort by accomplishing related results as needed. Determines changes in physical database by studying project requirements; identifying database characteristics, such as location, amount of space, and access method. Changes database system by coding database descriptions. Protects database by developing access system; specifying user level of access. Maintains user reference by writing and rewriting database descriptions. Skills/Qualifications: Database Performance Tuning, Database Management, Requirements Analysis, Software Development Fundamentals, Problem Solving, Documentation Skills, Verbal Communication, Data Maintenance, Database Security, Promoting Process Improvement, System Administration I was recently notifed by SSA that my request for SSDI was granted, first payment due in Jan/2014. Should I submit this letter as additional evidence for TDIU? For SSDI I claimed IHD, depression, anxiety, hearing, which are all SC.
  9. You will get the letter very soon, try not to be discourage... I know it is hard. Most of us have been there ( I know saying that doesn't make you feel any better, but we feel your pain and fustration). When you get your package, scan the portion of the Reason for Decision part, a text doc would be preferred so that you can cut and paste results to this forum. Exclude any personal information (names, SSN, etc). There are some very knowledgable members here that may see something you have not picked up on. Sorry this is happenng to you, sounds like you certainly deserve more! Just keep fighting and don't give up, You have paid dearly to your country, and we thank you for service, you have earned every bit of the benefits you are entitled to.
  10. The TDIU Form 21-8940 is not listed on the list of Evidence, nor anything else regarding TDIU.. I also has be granted SSDI last month, I did not forward that letter to the RO yet. 6. Entitlement to individual unemployability. Entitlement to individual unemployability is denied because the claimant has not been found unable to secure or follow a substantially gainful occupation as a result of service connected disabilities. The veteran is considered capable of gainful employment. {38 CFR 4.16} We sent you a letter dated July 2,2013 requesting you to complete and return VA Form 21-8940, Veteran's Application for Increased Compensation Based on Unemployability. To date we have not received this form. A review of VA Form 21-413 8, Statement in Support of Claim, dated September 9, 2012 shows that you are currently employed part time «20 hrs week). You feel you are underemployed but attribute this primarily due to the issues you have with his hearing loss and depression. The only impact on employment shown on V A examination was that attributed to your now service connected coronary artery disease. Restrictions on labor requiring long walking, standing, climbing, and! or carrying weight of greater than 15 Ibs are not an impact on your current job as a database program analyst. Marginal employment shall not be considered substantially gainful employment. For purposes of this section, marginal employment generally shall be deemed to exist when a veteran's earned annual income does not exceed the amount established by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, as the poverty threshold for one person. Marginal employment may also be held to exist, on a facts found basis. Because we have not recieved VA Form 21-8940, we cannot determine if your current employment is considered substantially gainful. ALSO... They listed the following on decision letter for my MH staus, taken from physc C&P exam, but apparently it was not considered? Wouldn't this sound unemployable? We have assigned a 70 percent evaluation for your major depressive disorder (claimed as depression) based on: Difficulty in adapting to work Near-continuous panic affecting the ability to function independently, appropriately and effectively Difficulty in adapting to stressful circumstances Near-continuous depression affecting the ability to function independently, appropriately and effectively Difficulty in adapting to a worklike setting Disturbances of motivation and mood Flattened affect Difficulty in understanding complex commands Difficulty in establishing and maintaining effective work and social relationships Forgetting directions Forgetting recent events Forgetting names Depressed mood Mild memory loss Anxiety Occupational and social impairment with occasional decrease in work efficiency and intermittent periods of inability to perform occupational tasks (although generally functioning satisfactorily, with routine behavior, self-care, and conversation normal) The examiner's assessment of your current mental functioning, which is partially reflected in your Global Assessment of Function score found below. Your Global Assessment of Function (GAF) score is 53. A range of 51-60 indicates moderate symptoms; or any moderate difficulty in social, occupational, or school functioning. The overall evidentiary record shows that the severity of your disability most closely approximates the criteria for a 70 percent disability evaluation. A higher evaluation of 100 percent is not warranted unless the evidence shows total occupational and social impairment, due to such symptoms as: gross impairment in thought processes or communication persistent delusions or hallucinations grossly inappropriate behavior persistent danger of hurting self or others intermittent inability to perform activities of daily living (including maintenance of minimal personal hygiene) • disorientation to time or place
  11. I had a claim finalized in Oct/2013 was awarded 90% (was 10%). I had also file for TDIU and was denied stating they did not receive an application. This is not correct, I submitted an application online via the claims upload feature. I can show the dates of the upload, it was indicated to be succesfully upload. I can verify this in eBennies by reviewing the "My Activity" option. They had it one file, elctronically but never reviewed it. I hope I don't have to wait another year or two to get this resolved. If they denied me because I was not eligable I could accept that but to deny me for not submitting an application is wrong! Which would get a quicker response, a request to reopen or CUE? (if I even have a QUE) I have called my VSO office, but never get a live person, messages go unanswered. 10% Tinnitus, 10% DM II, 60% IHD, 70% Mental Health - 90%
  12. My claim filed on 2/2012 has finally closed today (yeah!!!) I think I'm 90% if my VA Math is right... 0% Bi-Lateral hearing loss (previous award) 10% DM II - Agent Orange - outside Vietnam or unknown ?????? 10% Tinnitus (previous award) 60% IHD - Agent Orange - outside Vietnam or unknown ?????? 70% MDD - secondary SMC-K $100 My new award went from $129 (hearing & tinnitus) to $1,930. That would be consistent with vet/spouse at 90% + SMC-K. I'm happy, going for 10% to 90% and I don't mean to sound like I'm complaining but I have a question... I initially filed a direct connect claim for herbicide exposure while at Korat AFB, Thailand 73-74, I was a Jet Mechanic, provided my training/performance reviews, maps indicating areas near perimeter where I worked and bunked. Army documentation referring to procedure for spraying herbicides (500 meter drift area), CHECO report, etc. Afterwards gathering documentation I came upon a travel voucher showing a plane stop at Ton Son nHut Air Base, RVN. I sent this in via my VSO and indicated I should be considered in country and not have to show direct cause. (he is out on vacation right now) My questions are "does it matter if I am awarded a decision for IHD/DM II based on direct cause in Thailand or presumptive in RVN?" Are there any known pro or cons of one over the other? Should I be concerned? If I was to disagree would this be considered grounds for CUE or should I file an NOD w/DRO review? I did file an application for IU, but I won't know the story behind that until I get the BBE. Thank you HadIt for all the informative postings, advice and guidance you have offered, I always recommend to other veterans and surviving family members to sign up for HadIt, ask a lot of questions and read, read, read!
  13. Vet2010 - you should expect, at the very least, that they will replace the machine, provide a new hose and mask. You should be seen at least once a year to evaluate you AND the machine. My VAMC (Boston/Roxbury) doesn't have enough staff so they contract for me to have visits every six months from a private firm. I get a new hose, mask and filters with every visit and told if I need them sooner all I have to do is call them.
  14. pr - Thanks, that was my feeling also... but I think I'm better off just withdrawing the IU contention as it would only serve to delay the processing of my claim without any realistic "granted" outcome for IU. Altough I'll certainly consider IU in the future.
  15. I have some pending claims for hearing increase, IHD new, DM II new, ED and Depression secondary to SC disabilities. They have been pending since 2/2012 and I recently received a phone call from a RO person asking me if I wanted to consider IU. Initially I said yes but after receiving the va form 21-8940 I doubt I'll get it because i owrk part-time and make about twice what the Federal Poverty Level is (approx 19K after business deductions). I am an at home computer programmer, I'm self employed and work part-time because of my disabilities. I could never work fulltime and do not expect I will ever return to fulltime work. I am only able to work 10-15 hours per week under the condition that I can pick my own days/hours to get work done. I have a very accomodating client/employer. I have no other clients because of my stipulations on when I can or can not work. Given all this, should I bother filling out the form or just tell them I have no other evidence to submit so they can move my claim along?? I'd rather them not hold up my claim while verifying employment info, and unneccesarily clog up the system with claims that are going to go no where. And by the way, since I said yes I see that they added IU as a contention and eBennies shows the claim going back to gathering evidence... plus they changed the date of completion by adding another year at minamum. Could this have been a tactic to put the claim back in a holding pattern for another year. It is already 17 months old - Boston RO?
  16. I always read about the advantages of filling a FDC... are their any disadvantages. Does it effect whether you could file a NOD or Appeal to BVA? I understand that if one files additional contentions after submitting 256ez, the claim will be treated as a standard claim (slow lane).
  17. There are three requirements to establish Direct service-connection for residuals of injuries and diseases; 1) In-service documentation of an injury or disease. 2) A current condition with a medical diagnosis. 3) and a medical nexus connecting 1 and 2. taken from a very good self help guide posted on HADIT, it sounds to me like you may not have had enough convincing evidence that you have a current illness AND it is not supported by a medical Nexus that links the in service condition to the current diagnosis. http://www.hadit.com/veterans_self_help_guide.html
  18. Impaired hearing will be considered to be a disability for VA purposes when the thresholds for any of the frequencies of 500, 1000, 2000, 3000, and 4000 Hertz are 40 decibels or more; the thresholds for at least three of these frequencies are 26 decibels; or speech recognition scores using the Maryland CNC Test are less than 94 percent. 38 C.F.R. § 3.385. Tables are on the following link: http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?c=ecfr&SID=44874d4a8f343b01c79e1f37c209f23d&rgn=div8&view=text&node=38:1.0.1.1.5.2.100.36&idno=38
  19. IMHO... and probably the opinion of many others here... 90 days is an unreasonable expectation with the current backlogs. I am not saying that as an excuse... it'd just a fact. Whoever told you that a FDC it should be done in 90 days was smoking some pretty good shit. Also, regarding DBQs, they are just a tool for the raters to use. They are 'intended' to circumvent the need for a C&P, but there are no garuntees... If they want a C&P exam that is their choice... and you need to go or reschedule or they will drop your claim like a hot potatoe. If it is a FDC filed on a 21-256ez form, it is supposed to get into a 'fast lane' since it is supposed to not be as complicated as multiple contention claims. 'fast lane' is a relative term, greatly influenced by the workload at your VARO. If you add another contention to the claim, it will automatically be in the normal processing claim as if you filed a 21-256 form.
  20. I don't mean to sound crude, but we can believe it all we want. If you don't have it recorded in your SMR, you will need a very strong NEXUS showing how your SC disability has caused or aggravated your Sleep Apnea. I'm assume you have had a sleep study done... was it done/dx before your dx of PTSD? Do you have a CPAP machine?
  21. There is Obstructive Sleep Apnea, Central Sleep Apnea and Mixed Sleep Apnea. IMHO, I don't think any doctor would prescribe a CPAP without knowing what they are dealing with first. And then they would have to test you to see what setting (PSI) would be benefical to your situation, too much air or too little air would be more harmful than no CPAP at all. More than likely, you will require a sleep study. They actually have, if you are a candidate for it, sleep studies that can be done at home.
  22. I am guessing here that the issue for the denial was that the claim for DM II was filed after 1 year of discharged. And there wasn't a specific diagnosis of DM II in his SMR (there was an inferred DX but it was never stated in the SMR as DM II). That being said, you could resend your highlighted documentation with the NOD and ask that it be considered a infered claim, since your FPGs readings were already in your service medical records and the rater just did not pick up on it. And you think the fact that they didn't see it was unreasonable because there were many oppurtunities for them to do so. The raters are supposed to assist vets with their claims... which is one reason why some vets get awarded for things they didn't claim, but the rater found additional evidence in there c-file, SMR, etc.. Anybody have any thoughts on the infered claim idea???
  23. Ken - this is the rating scheduled for CAD (aka Ischemic Heart Disease) § 4.104 Schedule of ratings—cardiovascular system. - Diseases of the Heart, there are other conditions that you may or may not be able to claim. I would print off the whole section 4.104 and bring it to your cardiologist so that he could mention all applicable situations. I am not positive but yoou may also be eligible for 100% for recovery for several months. - you can review the complete scheduling for 4.104 at this link : http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?c=ecfr&SID=036a0cf06d49a7c18f10ea8ce3e9c331&rgn=div8&view=text&node=38:1.0.1.1.5.2.103.49&idno=38 I read everthing I can on this subject since I have a pending claim for IHD. It is my understanding that if you have an EF > 50%, they do not consider the EF, they only consider METs. Read the criteria, you don't see any rating for an EF > 50%. Note the table does not have a rating for 30 or 40%. If you are unable to have a DREAD MILL TEST to measure METs or your doctor feels it is not advsiable, then have the doctor estimate it... the criteria for estimated METs in on the DBQ. Of course it is important for the doctor to note the 'results in dizzines, angina, etc. etc.' Good luck and keep us posted. 7005 Arteriosclerotic heart disease (Coronary artery disease): With documented coronary artery disease resulting in: Chronic congestive heart failure, or; workload of 3 METs or less results in dyspnea, fatigue, angina, dizziness, or syncope, or; left ventricular dysfunction with an ejection fraction of less than 30 percent 100 More than one episode of acute congestive heart failure in the past year, or; workload of greater than 3 METs but not greater than 5 METs results in dyspnea, fatigue, angina, dizziness, or syncope, or; left ventricular dysfunction with an ejection fraction of 30 to 50 percent 60 Workload of greater than 5 METs but not greater than 7 METs results in dyspnea, fatigue, angina, dizziness, or syncope, or; evidence of cardiac hypertrophy or dilatation on electrocardiogram, echocardiogram, or X-ray 30 Workload of greater than 7 METs but not greater than 10 METs results in dyspnea, fatigue, angina, dizziness, or syncope, or; continuous medication required 10 Note: If nonservice-connected arteriosclerotic heart disease is superimposed on service-connected valvular or other non-arteriosclerotic heart disease, request a medical opinion as to which condition is causing the current signs and symptoms. .
  24. x020574

    Widow's Pension

    My condolences to you and your family...
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