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Penguin

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  1. Hi Mike, I am in a very similar situation. My original decision was prior to Feb 19 cutoff for legacy appeals. I submitted my legacy NOD around the end of Mar 19 and ~1 month later I received a letter in the mail from VA saying that I had submitted my appeal on the incorrect form with directions to submit via the new AMA options (supplemental, HLR, etc.). I called 1800 and the person confirmed that was the case and told me to resubmit via supplemental claim lane. I was ok with this option since it seemed supplemental might actually be a more expedited process. I submitted via supplemental in Apr 19 and waited. Jun 19 rolls around and I still haven't heard anything and I log into VA.gov and see supplemental claim opened so I think I am finally good to go. A few weeks go by and I see the supplemental claim is closed on VA.gov so I immediately call and 1800 and they have no idea after I walked them through the entire situation. The VA rep offered to submit an "Inquiry" for someone to take a closer look and said I would hear back in ~2 weeks on what is going on. I finally get a letter in the mail in Aug 19 from the RO stating that my ORIGINAL appeal (NOD) I submitted back in Mar 19 has been received and is being processed in date order. I also now see the legacy appeal in VA.gov. It appears when they started the new AMA process everything was getting mixed up with the legacy appeals and incorrect guidance was being given. I recommend calling the 1800 and asking to submit an official Inquiry into the situation and continue to follow-up on the status of the inquiry. I understand this is probably extremely frustrating, keep pushing and hopefully by submitting an Inquiry, someone will look at it that knows how to handle. Let me know if you have any other questions.
  2. It is down for me right now. I tried both eBenefits and VA.gov. It working for anyone?
  3. After posting this, I just realized I initially missed reading your response Phury since it was moved/voted up to the first page and deservingly so! Thank you, that makes a lot of sense as to what happened with my claim and I assume I received the "you need to submit this on the proper form" letter in error. I am torn as to what to do - rescind my legacy appeal and submit as supplemental - OR - continue to wait. I did submit additional evidence (100+ pages) when I filed my initial NOD. Will that be taken into consideration since you mentioned that you cannot submit new evidence in the legacy appeal process? I think the biggest thing against me is my initial C&P exam, which I feel was inadequate and rushed. I also went into the C&P exam still acting tough as if I was still in the military and downplaying my symptoms (pushing through pain, etc.). I am not sure how to combat a bad C&P exam, but maybe I should request to switch to Supplemental lane and submit a letter identifying the inadequacies of the C&P exam and request a new one. Anyone have experience with combatting a C&P exam or have guidance?
  4. *UPDATE* First and foremost, I can't thank you all enough for taking the time to read my questions and offer advice. Very kind of you all! I received a letter in the mail from the VA Regional Office verifying that my appeal originally submitted on March 26, 2019 on the legacy NOD was accepted and will be processed by the DRO in date order. VA.gov now shows my appeal as open and being reviewed by a DRO. Any advice if I should let this play out in the legacy appeal process (The ETA they provide is typically between 10 and 26 months) OR should I rescind and submit via the new Supplemental claim lane (~125 days)? Appreciate your guidance!
  5. Hi Phury and Rhage, I just received a letter in the mail which seems to provide some clarification as to what is happening, but still kind-of confusing. To give a little more back store before I submitted my supplemental claim, I first submitted a NOD 21-0958 on March 26, 2019 because that was what the directions stated in my initial decision letter (pre Feb 2019). I then received a letter stating if I would like the VA to review a claim previously denied I would have to file this request on the proper form and the letter included instructions on the 20-0995 Supplemental Claim. This is when I learned that the old NOD form was phased out Feb 2019 and led me to believe I could no longer file an appeal under the old rules and now had to resubmit under the supplemental claim lane and that is what I did. The letter I just received a couple days ago now says that they actually accepted my NOD to appeal and my claim is being reviewed by a Decision Review Officer (DRO) which I understand is the legacy appeal process. I am not sure I really want to be in the legacy process now since all I have heard is that it takes so long. In summary, I THINK my appeal is in the legacy appeal lane now and with the DRO. The letter also states that my appeal will be processed in date order so we shall see. Thanks for everyones thoughts and advice!
  6. Hi Berta, Yes, the letter goes on to include decisions for the 4 issues that I had "reopened", but it does not address any of the issues listed in the 2nd paragraph which were part of the supplemental claim. Hoping I can find out more this coming week. If I don't get any updates I am wondering if I should request the higher level review to trigger someone else having to take a look and hopefully get the ball rolling again.
  7. Nothing is currently showing "open" on VA.gov or eBenefits and I have not received any communication to indicate that so I really have no idea. I called peggy and was told they submitted an inquiry to find out what the status really is. They told me to give them 30-days and then call back. Also went to my VSO and he told me the same thing. It has been a few weeks now, so I plan to call back next week.
  8. Hi all, I submitted a request to reconsider my initial disability claim and after not seeing much progress and worrying that I would not receive a decision before my 1-year mark, I decided to submit a supplemental claim. Here is my timeline: Initial claim decision received: 10/23/2018 Requested to reconsider/reopen denied issues: 12/31/2018 Submitted Supplemental claim: 4/24/2019 Received notification of both reopened claim and supplemental claim closed in the same letter on: 6/21/2019 I am confused because the decision letter I received does not address all of my claimed issues and has the following verbiage below saying that the appeals will be addressed through the appeals process but when I look on VA.gov it shows that all my claims are closed. This contradicts what they say in the letter and I am not sure what is going on now. Has anyone experienced this before or have advice on what to do?
  9. Hi everyone, I was recently diagnosed with patellofemoral pain syndrome in both of my knees and I strongly believe that it was caused by my bi-lateral pes planus, which is service connected. I have never filed a secondary claim before and hoping to get advice from those that have been successful with a secondary claim and see what pieces of evidence are recommended to have. Here is what I have so far: Current medical diagnosis - Bilateral Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome from private orthopedic doctor Knee and Lower Leg disability DBQ completed by private orthopedic doctor Currently service connected at 10% for bilateral pes planus (supplemental claim in progress for increase due to pronated gait and bunion) I am assuming I will also need to get a medical opinion from my private doctor to link the patellofemoral pain syndrome to my pes planus? Or would the VA schedule a C&P to make that determination? Thanks in advance for the assistance!
  10. Doc25 and Buck52, thanks so much for the info! I did file for bilateral hearing loss. Below is the denial and it says I don't meet the thresholds to establish service connection.
  11. I received my VA disability rating decision on 10/23/2017 and here is the denial for my Tinnitus claim: When I initially submitted my claim, I did not seek help organizing my evidence (which was a huge mistake on my part) and I didn't submit any supporting evidence of this tinnitus claim. But now thanks to the help of this forum, I realize I need to make sure my appeal is good to go before submitting. I was flight crew in the Navy and I remember complaining several times while on active duty during my annual physicals about ringing in my ears. I have been looking through my medical records to try and see if this was documented at all and I found "tinnitus" in the remarks section of one of my annual hearing tests on 7/13/2017: In your opinion, does this support my claim that tinnitus WAS diagnosed while on active duty and is a direct result of my service? Also, would you recommend I submit any additional evidence to support my claim, such as lay evidence and/or a more current diagnosis from my doctor listing my symptoms? What would be the best way to approach appealing this? Can I call my regional office and send this to them and ask that they reconsider? Thanks for all of your help!
  12. In regards to my Tinnitus claim being denied, I remember complaining during active duty during my annual physicals about ringing in my ears many times. I have been looking through my medical records to try and see if this was documented at all and I found "tinnitus" in the remarks section of one of my annual hearing tests (below). What would be the best way to approach appealing this? Can I call my regional office and send this to them and ask that they reconsider? Thanks for all of your help!
  13. That is an interesting question LCK, and made me think of my situation flying on P-3's. Sorry, I don't have an answer but interested to see what others recommend here. Also, if anyone has a recommendation on how to evidence the same question for P-3s (what's a good way to document ambient noise level on a P-3?) I would appreciate the help as well as I try to support my tinnitus claim. Thanks and good luck!
  14. **Update - I do not see an option to include an attachment. I tried to add as a picture from URL, let me know if you are able to see that** I am not sure how to attach my scanned document so I uploaded as an image file and linked below. You will have to click on the image and it will zoom in. Please let me know if there is a better way to post attachments, thank you! https://i.imgur.com/dUIfOmF.jpg I added in some commentary of why I think I am underrating or why some of the issues should be service connected. When I originally submitted my claim, I should have sought help to organize my claims and include statements in support of my claims. I was kind of overwhelmed with the process so I did not submit much information to support my claims, but I now know that I should have asked for some help. Thank you again for your assistance so far!
  15. Thank you both so much for the information so far! I have attached my disability rating decision I added in some commentary of why I think I am underrating or why some of the issues should be service connected. When I originally submitted my claim, I should have sought help to organize my claims and include statements in support of my claims. I was kind of overwhelmed with the process so I did not submit much information to support my claims, but I now know that I should have asked for some help. Thank you again for your assistance so far! Disability Ratings Appeals.pdf
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