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First Class Petty Officer
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deedub75 last won the day on March 29

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About deedub75

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    E-5 Petty Officer 2nd Class

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  1. It could be that an error was made by the rater and it was corrected. You'll know for sure if you get another letter.
  2. They omnibus it to the first day of the next month.
  3. I have claims from 2010 that were denied in 2013. I asked for a de novo review and it was still denied. I sent to BVA and it took over 3 years for them to remand the claims because the judge was skeptical of the VA examiner's reasoning for the negative C&P exams. The judge pointed out evidence that seemed to be ignored by the VA examiner and the VA examiner mentioned literature but did not provide the literature or even the names of the studies referenced. That literature does not exist. I opted into RAMP with an HLR and claim was sent back to the same VA examiner for a medical opinion. The VA examiner made up new reasons for the denial. There was a duty to assist error so I was allowed to file another HLR. The claim again went back to the same VA examiner where she made different reasons for the denial again. I asked my orthopedic surgeon to provide a nexus letter and submitted it with a supplemental claim. My claim was finally taken out of the hands of the VA examiner who kept denying me and I was sent to a contractor. After 10 years of fighting for these claims the were finally approved. Even though I kept these claims open and didn't miss any deadlines, they made my effective date the date that they received the supplemental. The evidence from the beginning of the claim shows that I had knees and back problems which the VA wasn't denying that I had. I was claiming them as secondary to my service connected pes planus and right ankle but they kept saying it was impossible that pes planus and a bad ankle could cause knee and back issues. A simple Google search says that pes planus and a bad ankle will through your gait out of whack and cause knee, hip and back issues. My orthopedic surgeon could not believe that the VA would say this but what can you expect from VA examiners who are not experts in orthopedics? I filed another HLR asking for an earlier effective date and if it's not fixed it will go back to BVA.
  4. I'm service connected at 50% for chronic sinusitis and 30% for allergic rhinitis. Fat, I agree with you. If he files for headaches secondary to sinusitis then I believe his 10% will be confirmed and continued. They would likely just combine the headaches with the sinusitis and say they are inextricably intertwined. They did this to me when I filed for achilles tendinitis secondary to my service connected pes planus. They said they were inextricably intertwined and therefore couldn't be rated separately. If he's having more incapacitating episodes of sinusitis caused headaches then he should just file for an increase of the sinusitis. http://www.militarydisabilitymadeeasy.com/therespiratorysystem.html#nose
  5. They aren't really making up codes per se. They just don't have every disability in the CFRs. For example, I was found to have a varicocele on my entrance exam. A varicocele is an enlargement of veins in the scrotum next to the testicles. I should have been sent home for this but they allowed me to stay in anyway. It was noted on my entrance exam to fix it for infertility or pain. A few years later I began to have pain and I had surgery at the Army hospital to repair it. When I was leaving active duty I was sent to the VA to file a claim. I mentioned that I had surgery for the varicocele and I was told to claim it along with an ankle injury I had. There's not rating for a varicocele so they did an analogous rating as if it were varicose veins in my legs which I thought was stupid because they are no way near the same thing. I got 10% for it. I eventually filed for an increase but since it's rated like varicose veins in the legs, my symptoms did not match the rating schedule of varicose veins so the increase was denied. I wrote a letter to the VA asking that they include a rating code for varicoceles because it is quite common in men and it wasn't fair to male veterans to rate it as varicose veins. They are revamping the ratings schedules and I see that they are going to add it. All because of me! LOL just kidding! I also filed for low testosterone secondary to the varicocele and it was granted at 10%. But guess what - there is not rating schedule for testosterone either! So, it was rated analogous to hypothyroidism. Basically at my C&P exam for low testosterone, they asked me questions and examined me from the hypothyroidism DBQ. Since I did not have hypothyroidism, I didn't have labs to support a hypothyroidism claim for increase and I said no to a lot of the questions they asked me and the increase was denied.
  6. My supplemental said that until it was closed.
  7. That’s good intel! I don’t believe it was that way when I was working there. I think high dollar claims were 2 signatures then.
  8. I think it’s a rubber stamp statement. You can look at you letters or disabilities list on ebenefits to see if anything has changed.
  9. I don’t believe that it’s a requirement for a rater to review all of the rated disabilities, but if they run across a mistake they are supposed fix it. Unless a rater is still in training, there is no one checking their ratings for accurately before they are finalized. If there is a huge backpay then a manager has to sign off on it but for the most part they aren’t checked. Now if some has a rated disability and he asks for an increase then the current rating will be reviewed. If it was rated incorrectly it could be decreased if it’s not protected.
  10. If the supplemental didn’t get you service connected then the HLR probably won’t either. Unless the DRO finds an error in the supplemental claim the he or she will just basically rubber stamp the previous decision. I’m service connected for sinusitis and allergies but I was diagnosed in service with both. Your best bet will probably be BVA. Also, they probably aren’t required to call if they have enough evidence to decide the claim. I filed an HLR and asked for a call and I missed the calls. Sometimes they only let it ring once and hang up and put a note in saying they called. I filed a supplemental with a nexus statement from my doctor and it was approved but they put the wrong effective date. I have an HLR hoping the DRO will correct but it will go to BVA if they don’t.
  11. There’s no way he got granted service connection for prostate cancer due to AO based on his story alone. As shrek pointed out, the ship need only be within 12 nautical miles of Vietnam. So, if he was on the ship within the correct timeframe, the ship was close enough to Vietnam, and he has prostate cancer then he would be granted service connection. I think even just having AO on board could be enough too if it could be proven that the ship was carrying it. As for the PTSD, if the incident happened on board the ship, I don’t think it would even matter if he witnessed it or not.
  12. I have some waiting to be scheduled with LHI but their website is still saying that they can’t conduct them yet.
  13. Interesting. Keep us posted on how they decide this. I'm fighting the backpay boondoggle as well from a claim I filed in 2010. I filed for pes planus and knees/back secondary to pes planus and right ankle (was already 10% for this). It took about 3 years due to the backlog and me moving to a different state but pes planus was denied so of course knees and back were denied as well. It was noted on my exams that I did have bilateral knee tendinitis and a back issue. I filed a NOD and asked for a de novo review and I was sent for new exams. The pes planus claim was granted at 30% with the effective date back to the original date of claim in 2010 but the knees and back claims were denied again. Even though it was clearly stated on my exit exam that I had an abnormal gait, the examiner claimed that I had a normal gait so it wasn't possible for my pes planus to cause my knees and back issues. She also claimed that the literature says that pes planus could not cause knee and back issues. I submitted a copy of my exit exam and asked for it to go to the BVA. BVA remanded it questioning the examiners reasoning for the denial and asked for the literature that she was referencing. I opted into RAMP to speed things up. The same examiner then opined that although I had a bad gait, it wasn't bad enough. She also threw in my weight and age as the reason for my knee and back issues. In 2010, I was only 35 and nowhere near overweight. In February 2020, I submitted a supplemental claim and a nexus statement from my orthopedic surgeon stating that it was more than likely that my knee and back issues were cause by me running, marching, etc. on a bad ankle and flat feet while I was on active duty. Claims were finally granted but they made the effective date the date that I submitted the supplemental claim. So, in my humble opinion, it was clear to the VA when I filed in 2010 that I had diagnosed pes planus, knees and back issues. And since they eventually granted pes planus with the 2010 effective date, the same should go for the knees and back. I filed an HLR for them to correct the effective since I had been continuously pursuing these claims since 2010. Hopefully, they will fix it but if they don't I think the BVA will.
  14. When my back claim was finally granted, the radiculopathy for both legs was added at 10% for each leg. I did not apply for radiculopathy but there was ample evidence in my medical records that I have radiculopathy. The VA will usually infer radiculopathy, and peripheral neuropathy if it is in the medical records.
  15. I called Peggy a couple of weeks ago about the claim and they told me that exam requests had been put in. Then the guy had the nerve to tell me that I was already at 100% so he didn't know what I was trying to do. I had surgery in ankle surgery in February so I filed for temporary 100% so I could get SMC-S for convalescence. I also applied for a couple of SMC-Ks. There should be enough in my files for them to use ACE for all I claimed but I could see them needing an in person exam to see how well my ankle has healed from surgery.
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