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broncovet

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broncovet last won the day on August 16

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About broncovet

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    E-9 Master Chief Petty Officer

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  • Service Connected Disability
    100
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    Navy

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  1. As indicated, the VA does not "have" to defend against you, they can award the benefit sought. This is good to know. I think this is part of what Berta was talking about when she "asked VA to CUE themselves". At least "some of the time", Va will admit the decision is in error and not force the Vet to go through the apppeals process. This should be done MORE often, maybe much more, to reduce appeals backlog. Once in a while we hear the VA will say things like, "well if you drop the xx claim, we will award the Y benefit". Usually, when VA does negoitiate like this, they realize they are in a weak defensive position. It makes sense to me: My attorney asked me to drop the sleep apnea claim, While I did not want to do this, I did know that it was a very rough issue to prove, as there was no such thing as sleep apnea diagnosis in the 70's, and I did not have documentation of snoring in service. I knew I had to go secondary, that is sleep apnea secondary to depression. I did discuss this very issue with a private sleep doc, who went so far as to say that depression/PTSD has the same symptoms as sleep apnea, so they are as related as birthday candles and a birthday cake.
  2. Congratulations! The most likely time for that to happen is if you submitted new and material evidence. You see, Va is supposed to "reopen" the claim with N and m evidence. That evidence can be compelling, sometimes. Or, sometimes VA does cue themselves and, beleive it or not promptly fixes their errors. Its almost like winning the lottery. We just need to see this more often. Most of the time, if there is an error in the decision, the VA "defends" the error, even when its indefensable. Supreme Court Justice, Roberts, was "suprised" when he found out that Va takes a position against the VEt that is "substantially unjustified" over 60 percent of the time. This normally means that EAJA pays the attorney fees. However, I will be suprised if the EAJA will pay attorney fees when your RO awards benefits. This may signal a new trend, even tho its a good one, Vets may not like it that much. Maybe the VA is saving EAJA fees by awarding the claim at the RO level. Its all just a guess as to what the VA is thinking. People always ask me, "Why did the VA do this?" Im lucky if I can tell you why I did something let alone the VA.
  3. Caluza Triangle questions

    One way to do this, which is my preferred method, is to turn it over to an attorney, then dont worry about it....do something else with your life. This is almost as stress free as just dropping your claim. Unfortunately, this does not work if you turn it over to an attorney and then "take it back", that is, if you REALLLY dont turn it over to an attorney but try to "manage" what the attorney does. When I get a letter from VA, I email. my attorney and make sure she got it. Then I dont care what she does with the letter. If you try to " micromange" the attorney, its even more stressful: "Gee (attorney), why did you 'drop' sleep apnea and, by the way, why haven't you filed a writ of mandamus? Oh, and I didnt get a copy of the the most recent c and p exam, so send it to me so we can decide if we will challenge that exam or not."
  4. Caluza Triangle questions

    I agree with Berta. I had the Caluza triangle in 2002 but got denied anyway, because VARO made stuff up as a reasons and bases for denial that were NOT in the Caluza triangle. Most Vets who win benefits NOT ONLY have the Caluza triangle elements, but they also persist on the appeals until they win. Those are the keys: 1. Get the Caluza triangle. 2. Persist until you win. If you get denied (likely), you have to file a nod within a year, and it has to be on the proper form.
  5. Yes, Im an "expert" at 0 percent ratings..I was rated zero percent for hearing loss after a lengthy appeal and win at BVA. Since I have "been there, done that", I wouldnt go through that again for what Alex succintly refers to as an "empty lollipop stick". I took the money from my zero percent hearing loss rating and sent a check to my bank for the full amount, $0.00 each month, and they were not impressed and took my home away. I can not even imagine why anyone would want to go through all that for hearing aids..(which I already got from VA even before the zero percent rating). If you want to go through all that stress for no additional compensation, by all means feel free to do so, so there is "documentation". I have had VA's "documentation requirements" up to here (points to my neck) for the past 15 years when I first applied in 2002. I would rather put my right hand in a meat grinder than to deal with VA's hamster wheel again for zero compensation. I really dont care about dotting the i's and crossing the t's for VA except to the extent of the benefits provided. You and I are already at the max, and absent an EED or SMC's, I have "zero" interest in documenting any additional disabiilites that are not "productive", that is, where I can actually see the benefits. For me, I would much rather Va work claims on Vets who ARE due compensation, and I dont even like my paperwork in there, if I feel like Im taking the place of a more deserving Vet. That is, there are only so many people to work claims and if they are working mine just to put a feather in my cap, then I will gladly surrender my "documentation of an additional disability" for that. A few years ago, when Va awarded me 100 percent, they adjuticated TDIU as "moot". I appealed this, because I alleged IU was "not moot" because it meant a) I could get an EED and b) I could get SMC S via Bradley vs Peake. Other than those things, I agreed that an award of TDIU would be moot for a 100 percent Vet. The board agreed with me, that there WAS additonal compensation potential because of IU, but if there were no additional benefits they would have said it was "moot". Im not trying to be a pain, here..you dont have to take my advice. Im just saying I would not jump through all VA hoops for a zero percent rating or at least some potential compensation for my self or my family, with the family being more important. I could care less about the additional "documented" disability.
  6. IMO/Nexus for Diabeties Type 2

    I will try to answer this one for Berta, in regard to secondary conditions and presumptives. It sounds like, perhaps, you are confusing the two. If its a "presumptive" then you dont need to establish that it is secondary to a service connected condition (secondary). You can establish service connection in ANY of the 3 (primary, secondary, presumptive), you dont need them all. Yes, I know you have to have all of them with the Caluza Trio (diagnosis, in service event, nexus), but you need establish only ONE of these for SC: Primary, Secondary, or presumptive.
  7. CUE & SMC questions as surviving spouse

    I agree with Berta. I will add this, tho. If "unsure" whether you must get the substitution or nod in "on time", then by all means get 'er done, and worry about whether or not it is "for sure" necessary later. The VA LOOOOOOVESS to deny claims that are filed untimely, because those are no brainers. They can stack all claims that have been filed 365 days and one second or more after the decision, into a pile, then hire a team of chimpanzees with rubber stamps that say, "Denied claim, untimely filed" on them all. Dont let this happen to you, get it in on time. VA is ANAL about its one year period even tho VA seems to think its quite okay for them to take 10 years to process your claim and they still self proclaim themselves as "claimant friendly and non adversarial". An attorney wont likely be able to fix a late filed appeal or substitution. File them, and then if the attorney must amend them, then he may be able to do that.
  8. CUE & SMC questions as surviving spouse

    I agree with Berta. I will add this, tho. If "unsure" whether you must get the substitution or nod in "on time", then by all means get 'er done, and worry about whether or not it is "for sure" necessary later. The VA LOOOOOOVESS to deny claims that are filed untimely, because those are no brainers. They can stack all claims that have been filed 365 days and one second or more after the decision, into a pile, then hire a team of chimpanzees with rubber stamps that say, "Denied claim, untimely filed" on them all. Dont let this happen to you, get it in on time. VA is ANAL about its one year period even tho VA seems to think its quite okay for them to take 10 years to process your claim and they still self proclaim themselves as "claimant friendly and non adversarial".
  9. 100% P&T ...... Thank You Hadit

    Congratulations! To answer your question, Sorry, we dont know if you have "loss of use" of body parts, and we dont know if you need A and A, either. However, if you are asking about Statuatory SMC S (100 plus 60), the VA is pretty specific which is "no". You pretty much have to have a "single" 100 percent disability rated at 100 percent to qualify for statuatory SMC S housebound. Again, you may qualify for SMC S "housebound in fact", but I dont know if you are substantially confined to your home or not. I would look up the regulation for you, but a single 100 percent (or TDIU, under Bradley vs Peake) is required for statuatory SMC S.
  10. Ok. I dont recommend applying for benefits that wont potentially result in additional compensation. To me, that is like going shopping for a car when you have no ability or need to buy a car, just to give you something to do. If you need something to occupy your time with, then I would humbly suggest something more productive...visiting grandchildren, reconnecting with old friends, reading or writing a book, playing chess or even going fishing. It would appear to serve no purpose except perhaps to "ease your fear" of a reduction, and I doubt it will really accomplish that either. Why, well of course its possible for VA to reduce both of your disabilities, not just one. If I have mischaracterized or misread you to be a "worrier", then please accept my apologies in advance. Its pure speculation on my part..you may have other reasons for wanting to increase your rating, even tho I can quite understand why else you would do so right now. My experience with "worriers" is that when one worry is taken care of, they replace that worry with another one. If you do fear a reduction and are giving your self "breathing room" by getting more disabilities rated, then I suggest you read up on reductions, as knowledge is empowering.
  11. If there is no DC for it, then it may be rated under analogous ratings. Since you are apparently already 100 percent, and I dont know what level of SMC, another rating may not mean a lot UNLESS you are trying to get your wife DIC. That may not matter anyway, either, depending upon how long you have been married and how long after SC it is until you pass away. Im "smelling" here, since you have a blocked artery, you are wishing to care for your spouse by making sure she gets DIC. Please dont be offended if my guess is wrong. This said, you are not a rating specialist and need not concern yourself with the diagnostic code, except sometimes upon appeal it can make a difference if VA rates it under the wrong DC. Im not going to make a guess on a DC for you for reasons I mentioned. As to your question "which part of the body does CAD fall under", IDK that either. I will guess that CAD is similar to diabetes, in that it affects many if not all body systems. If you are referring to A and A, or other SMC's, then when you get to the level of disabilities you are at, if you have "loss of use", then it should not be difficult to SC them also. Of course, "should" is the operative word here. Evidence wins claims. If you want to service connect a new condition, did your doctor state this is due to service, or, is this on the presumptive list for you time and branch of service?
  12. Paul There are TWO significant issues in 3.156. They are 3.156 b (pending claim) and 3.156 C (new service records). Both of these permit an EED. If its new service records, then you get the earlier date either way. If its a pending claim you also get the earlier date. However, if its neither a pending claim nor new service records, then your effective date will be the date you submitted new evidence.
  13. You are still "in appeal" for 60 days AFTER your BVA decision. If you do NOT file a NOA to the board decision, the boards decison becomes final and your appeal ends. It continues, however, if you timely file a "notice of appeal" to the CAVC. If you have a recent BVA decision, this is the perfect time to get an attorney. Perfect. You send an attorney your bva denial, and they will decide if they will represent you in an appeal to the CAVC, but you must hurry. You have 60 days to file a notice of appeal. This means you have to send it to an attorney, get him to send you a fee agreement. Sign it and return it to him, and then he has to file a NOA. Sixty days is not long to do that.
  14. The "Howell" criteria merely states what "congress intended" all along, AND established a "precedential case" for interpreting congress intent. Va had done it all wrong when they required the Veteran to not leave the home ever, and the courts spanked them for doing that. It was "grandfathered" when congress passed the law, not when VA abused the the regulation taking advantage of Vets for years. The law didnt change with Howell, it was that way all along, but AFTER HOWELL VA can no longer stiff Vets by denying housbound if they show up for a c and p exam. The "effective date" for Howell is when congress passed the law.
  15. Howell says we are not a prisoner in our own home in order to get housebound. "Substantially" confined to our home means we dont leave it to go to work!!!
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