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Jim 501st

Second Class Petty Officers
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  1. Preferences § 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - = Backspace Tab q w e r t y u i o p [ ] Return capslock a s d f g h j k l ; ' \ shift ` z x c v b n m , . / shift English Deutsch Español Français Italiano Português Русский alt alt Preferences My wife and I took my friend's Wife (who is also a friend) to the WV veterans assistance program which has rep's from A. L. vfw ect. They filled out the necessary paper work for her DIC, also the paper work for funeral expenses and head marker. I hope it goes smoothly but the VA is the VA. My wife and I was with her when he passed. The staff allowed us to stay with him as long as we wanted. We stayed about 3 hours. As hard as it was to see him go, it was nice to see him at peace. finally at peace. He had suffered really bad the last two months. While we were visiting with him after he passed, I went out to the nursing station and explained to the head nurse how important it was that Leukemia be mentioned on his death certificate as he was rated 100% for that disease. I also told her that we all know it was final stage leukemia that killed him regardless of the final cause of death and his wife would not qualify for any benefits if it wasn't in black and white on his death certificate. She teared up and said she would put a noted to that effect on his chart so the Dr. would see it the next morning when he filled it out. I seen his death certificate today and it had cause of death. (sepsis and pneumonia and down below it said caused by complications of leukemia. I hope this will satisfy the VA. I want to thank all for your input and pray the DIC goes through. Jim 501st Preferences § 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - = Backspace Tab q w e r t y u i o p [ ] Return capslock a s d f g h j k l ; ' \ shift ` z x c v b n m , . / shift English Deutsch Español Français Italiano Português Русский alt alt Preferences
  2. Preferences § 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 - = Backspace Tab q w e r t y u i o p [ ] Return capslock a s d f g h j k l ; ' \ shift ` z x c v b n m , . / shift English Deutsch Español Français Italiano Português Русский alt alt Preferences A friend of mine recently died from service connected leukemia. He had only been service connected two months and a twenty year retired seabee. His wife of 45 years is eligible for DIC. Any advice on who can assist her in the process of filing a claim would be beneficial. We plan to go the American Legion tomorrow. I know she needs to take her marriage certificate, DD214 form and death certificate. (Death certificate states cause of death is leukemia) Does anyone with any experience dealing with DIC know what else we should take in order to file a claim.. Jim 501st
  3. I had the same thing happen to me. I was service connected for menier's by the BVA and tdiu remand. The evidence the ro had showed me to be 100% for menier's. I recieved a handsome check from the VA with in a couple of months back dated to Jan 2007.(The date of my claim.) I was previosly awarded 50% ptsd in 2004 which I appealed. This portion was remand back to ro for tdiu. It took nearly a year, but was eventually sent for a c&p for tdiu.( I had other issues on the remand for tdiu including 40% hearing loss and 10% each r%l knee). It took several months, but finally was awarded 100% for tdiu from 2004 to Jan. 2007, at which point it became mute since I was 100% secular from that point. In my case, not only did I recieve another handsome check but If I survive until Jan. 2014 my wife will qualify for DIC. I hope this helps and good look. Jim
  4. They must think I am stupid. I have deleted 480 to this point. I'LL BET ITS A COMPENTENCY TEST
  5. Did the C&P also address TOTAL SOCIAL IMPAIRMENT ? That would also need to be factored into the adjudication. JMHO The exact wording on the C&P are as follows as I said earlier the dr gave me a gaf of 40 and I might add the c & p doctor was board certified by American Board of Psychiatric and Neurology. The gaf is reflective of severity of Axis 1 diagnosis which is severe. The veterans condition does affect him severely in a negative manner. As far as ability to secure or maintain gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. The Veteran is competent for VA benefit purposes. The veteran is to continue treatment with VA Mental Health Clinic. If you are seeking an EED on SMC, your posting indicates the doc knew about your SMC earlier. If I understand this correctly, SMC is supposed to be inferred automatically, when the medical evidence supports it. As you probably know, the effective date is the later of the date applied or the facts found (which usually means the doc said you are disabled). This is a quote from the C & P doctor's statement under Summary of Effects on Occupational and Daily Activities: Are there effects of the problem on usual daily activities: Yes Describe others: This veteran has a gait problem and this would prevent him from performing many activities of daily living without assistance. Remember I said earlier this same c & p doctor denied service connection which the BVA judge at a later date service connected. It was then sent back to the RO and I was awarded 100% from the c & p mentioned above with no mention of SMC.
  6. am a bit confused so please bear with me ... I understand that you are being compensated at the SMC L 1/2 level, correct? If so, why is Individual Unemployabilty an issue? If you are at 100% for another condition Meniere's Disease?), the issue of IU is moot (unless there is something of a historical nature that I'm unaware of). On what basis are you applying for an additional 100%? You seem to have a good handle on SMC so you probably already know this: an additional, independent 100% grants a step increase in SMC, or perhaps in your case to SMC S 1/2 (if you aren't pursuing an increase for PTSD) from 38 CFR 3.350(f)(4) http://www.benefits....ART3/S3_350.DOC As I said before my case is a bit confusing: The BVA Judge service connected Meniere's and sent it back to the RO to rate. Due to the c&p exam, they assigned me 100% back dated to the date I filed, which was the middle of 2007. She also remand several issues Including left knee which was granted, Also IU. The ask a specific question. ( Was this Veteran unable to work prior to 2007) I had three c&p's on the same day. One for hearing which the c&P DR. said my hearing alone made me iu,. This is insignificant as it only took me back to the same date I was granted P&T. I'll skip to the PTSD The Shrink who did this C&P stated I was iu due solely on ptsd and gave me a gaf of 40. He also made reference to another C&P I had in 2005 for ptsd where that Dr said I was unable to work due solely to ptsd. ( the RO low balled me and gave me 50% at that time). This claim was filed in 2004 which if granted the VA would have to pay me the difference of 50% to 100% from 2004 to 2007 when they gave me 100% for meniere's, but more important to me it would reset the 10 year clock back to 2004 for DIC purposes. Just for the record the third Md also said I was IU prior to 2007 for all the medical conditions conbinded.
  7. I read the post on EED, and thought I would ask a question on the subject. I am currently rated 100% Meniere's 50% ptsd 10% each knee with bilateral I am attaching a portion of a letter I sent to my lawyer yesterday and would like to know if you Guys think it has legs. We are anxiously awaiting our case to get back to the BVA for a decision on additional 100% or IU in reference to the three c & p s I had performed at the -------VAMC for hearing, general physical and PTSD. I know my C file can be only be at one place at a time and it is being held at the ---------RO awaiting DRO review on SAH claim. Do you have any idea when this DRO review may transpire? Our intentions are to spend the winter in Florida from January to April. When my case goes back to the BVA, I would like you to consider the facts below and see if you think they have any merits. This is concerning SMC's L 1/2 that your firm helped me get. They backpayed me to the date that we filed for SMC; however, if we go back to the C & P for Menieres Disease performed on January 7, 2008, the C & P doctor named ------------- admitted that my C & P report under Physical Exam portion that there are signs of a staggering gait or imbalance? Answer Yes. Other Findings: Veteran has difficulty getting out of chair. He has a noticeable gait disturbance and leans toward the left. His wife was with him today. Summary of All Effects on Occupational and Daily Activities: Diagnosis: Menieres Disease Effects of the problem on Occupational Activities: Dizziness, general occupational effect: not employed, receiving SS disability for back condition. Are there effects of the problem on usual daily activities: yes Describe others: This veteran has a gait problem that would prevent him from performing many activities of daily living without assistance. At the end of her C & P report, the doctor denied service connection for all the above. The BVA judge at our hearing service connected the Menieres Disease and I was Page Two -------------- backpayed 100% to the date that I filed for Menieres Disease. We then filed for SMC and was assigned L 1/2 and backdated to the date that I filed. After reviewing Dr. ------------------C & P report, she clearly states in her physical exam portion that I needed assistance for daily living at that time. I understand you normally receive SMC's from the date you file for them; however, in this case, I wonder if a presumption of inferred claim should not be in effect and backdated to at least the date of this C & P, January 7, 2008, or the date in 2007 that the Regional Office awarded me 100% for Menieres Disease, probably based on these C & P results. I would appreciate the BVA Judge being made aware of all the facts mentioned above if you think they have merit. ----------------- DOB: 1/15/43 File No. ---------------------- My point is I could not file for smc's until the BVA Judge service connected it and the RO approved my claim at 100%. If the c&p Dr had service connected at the time I would have filed for smc's. I did apply for and was awarded aide and attendance as soon as I got the 100% award. Jim 501st
  8. Berta No the VA RO did not mention anything about SMC M Will the varo who sent me for the three c&p's make a decision on the IU or will they send all there results back to the BVA and let them make the decision. Also I am still wondering about the SMC L1/2 starting date.The RO used thr date I filed for smc, but clearly the lady who did the C&P stated I need Aid at the time of her exam..She denied service connection which the BVA reverset.It seems to me at the very least the starting date should have been date the same time I recieved my 100% as that was the evidence they used to grant the claim. It seems to me they drop the ball and commited a cue. What say you. Jim
  9. 1. The Docket no. is 08-00 380 2. no statement of AA was mentioned when award granted. 3.Proably not, I was awarded L1/2 on 3/15/2010 4. notice on the remand I droped the request for 50% to 70% ptsd. (due to bad advice from Lawyer.) 5. they rated me 100% secular for meniere's only. I would like to point out here that the C&P person (refered to by the Judge as a Practical Nurse) stated in her exam that this Veteran would require the aide of another person due to the seriousness of my meniere's., but she denied service connection which the Judge changed to service connected. 6. No the VA made no mention of SMC m 7. I do get ssdi due to a back injury. (non service connected)This was in 1985. My Shrink's have advised me since I was a work-a-holic prior to my injury is how I kept my ptsd under control. When I became idol is when my world colasped and all the memories came back with a vengance. I hope I have answered all your questions. any insight would be greatly appreciated. Jim
  10. 1) I was denied an increase from 50% to 70% in 2004 for PTSD. (I filed an IU the same time I filed for the 70% increase. Both these claims were denied so I appealed this to the BVA.) 2) I was denied a right knee injury in 2005. 3) I was awarded 30% hearing loss in 2007 but was denied Meniere's Disease 1/22/07. 4) I applied for left knee disability as a residual to the right knee. These all went before the BVA judge at the end of 2009. In her decision, she service connected the right knee which the RO assigned 10% disability. She also service connected the Meniere's Disease which the RO had no choice but to award 100% permanent and total because of the evidence in their possession. She remanded the left knee residual which was service connected and awarded 10%. She also remanded the IU. (I applied for Aide and Attendance and was awarded at the L 1/2 SMC.) This is where it is becoming very interesting. March 4, 2011 I had three C & P's for IU. The question to all three examiner's was "Is this veteran unemployable prior to 1/22/07." 1) One C & P was for hearing loss and under "Please describe how the veterans disabilities impact his ability to secure or maintain gainful employment." Based on the veteran's hearing loss, his ability to communicate effectively is severely impaired. Impaired communication can result in a difficulty working environment compromising productivity. People with hearing loss have difficulty getting and keeping a job. Those that have employment need communication accommodations to function most effectively. However, due to uncertainty or fear, employers are ofter unwilling to hire hard of hearing. This is illegal under various laws, but still extremely common. In the MarkeTrak VIII study of more than 40,000 households in the US on earnings and unemployment rates, hearing loss revealed a deleterious impact. (The Hearing Journal Oct. 2010 Volume 63, Issue 10). (I failed to mention that earlier in her report she had my hearing as severe to profound in both ears.) 2) Psychiatric report for PTSD. DIAGNOSTIC IMPRESSION: Axis I: Post-traumatic stress disorder, major depressive disorder. Axis II. No diagnosis. Axis III. Meniere's syndrome, traumatic arthritis of knees, degenerative joint disease of bilateral knees and lower back with history of back surgery. Axis IV. Multiple surgical health problems. Axis V. Global Assessment of Functioning equivalent to 40. OPINION: The Veteran continues to suffer from symptoms of depression. The Veteran suffers from chronic pain. Has difficulty ambulating. Has hopeless, helpless, worthless feelings. The veteran has symptoms of PTSD related to intrusive thoughts, flashbacks, nightmares of the past. He has avoidance behavior to watching anything relating to war as well as crowds. He gets anxious and nervous. He gets hypervigilant with loud sounds. The Veteran, in addition, has multiple physical health issues; two major problems being Meniere's syndrome with constant dizziness and feelings of nauseous and difficulty with ambulation secondary to the same, and has to walk with the help of a cane as well as having problems with ambulation and balance secondary to arthritis of his knees. The Veteran had a 1961 right knee injury. He has had arthritis. He has had back injury and has had back problems. In addition,, he has heart problems, thyroid problems, cholesterol problems, GERD, etc. The Veteran's evaluation by Dr. -----on 7/29/04 indicated that he was unable to work since 1985 due to back injury and Veterans evaluation of 7/12/2005 of Dr. ------- ( C & P exam) indicated PTSD and associated with moderately severe to severe major depression with the statement that physical and emotional condition had affected him socially, industrially, as well as occupationally, matter being further compounded by his numerous physical problems including poor hearing and back pain. As far as opinion of impact of service connected disabilities a whole on his ability to secure or maintain gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. The Veteran has suffered from multiple physical and psychiatric health issues prior to 1/22/2007 and the service connection was in effect for PTSD and right knee disorder at that time with PTSD evaluated at 50% and right knee as 10% disabling. The Veteran has suffered from PTSD along with right knee condition as well as other multiple physical health problems for the last several years, and Veteran has not been able to work since 1985 with educations being 8 years of grade school with GED later in service and experiencing work as a supervisor for a construction company and unable to work full time since 1985. The Veteran has multiple physical health problems including service connected conditions as mentioned above which affect him severely with any kind of gainful employment or maintaining any gainful employment or substantial gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. The Veteran did start with his back injury, unable to work, but over time the Veteran has had symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, right knee injury, chronic pain, balance problems, Meniere's disease, and multiple health issues which affect him on a day-to-day basis with physical and emotional issues affecting him in a negative way with social, occupational functioning including mood. The GAF is reflective of severity of Axis I diagnosis which is severe. The Veteran's condition does affect him severely in a negative manner. As far as ability to secure or maintain gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. 3) C & P by medical doctor is too lengthy but in-a-nutshell he also said my service-connected knee injuries made me unemployable including sedentary prior to 1/22/2007. Since all these issues were remanded to the RO, I have been awarded 100% secular for Meniere's but these reports must now go back to the BVA for a decision on IU. I don't know what the results will be, however, if she awards IU it would be back pay at 100% rate for two years prior to the original date of 100%. Any comments? Jim 501st I have another question. I applied for aa after I was awarded 100% for meniere's, It was awarded but only back to the date I applied, Which seemed right at the time. Since the Brady decision I wonder if I should request an earlier effective date at least too the date of my C&P which is the date they used for the award? The reason I ask this questions because the C&P examiner stated in her report (The Veteran has a gait problem and this would prevent him from performing many activities of daily living without assistance.) This case will now be returned to the BVA for a finale decision. should I bring this up soothe Judge consider it ? Thanks Jim 501st
  11. 1) I was denied an increase from 50% to 70% in 2004 for PTSD. (I filed an IU the same time I filed for the 70% increase. Both these claims were denied so I appealed this to the BVA.) 2) I was denied a right knee injury in 2005. 3) I was awarded 30% hearing loss in 2007 but was denied Meniere's Disease 1/22/07. 4) I applied for left knee disability as a residual to the right knee. These all went before the BVA judge at the end of 2009. In her decision, she service connected the right knee which the RO assigned 10% disability. She also service connected the Meniere's Disease which the RO had no choice but to award 100% permanent and total because of the evidence in their possession. She remanded the left knee residual which was service connected and awarded 10%. She also remanded the IU. (I applied for Aide and Attendance and was awarded at the L 1/2 SMC.) This is where it is becoming very interesting. March 4, 2011 I had three C & P's for IU. The question to all three examiner's was "Is this veteran unemployable prior to 1/22/07." 1) One C & P was for hearing loss and under "Please describe how the veterans disabilities impact his ability to secure or maintain gainful employment." Based on the veteran's hearing loss, his ability to communicate effectively is severely impaired. Impaired communication can result in a difficulty working environment compromising productivity. People with hearing loss have difficulty getting and keeping a job. Those that have employment need communication accommodations to function most effectively. However, due to uncertainty or fear, employers are ofter unwilling to hire hard of hearing. This is illegal under various laws, but still extremely common. In the MarkeTrak VIII study of more than 40,000 households in the US on earnings and unemployment rates, hearing loss revealed a deleterious impact. (The Hearing Journal Oct. 2010 Volume 63, Issue 10). (I failed to mention that earlier in her report she had my hearing as severe to profound in both ears.) 2) Psychiatric report for PTSD. DIAGNOSTIC IMPRESSION: Axis I: Post-traumatic stress disorder, major depressive disorder. Axis II. No diagnosis. Axis III. Meniere's syndrome, traumatic arthritis of knees, degenerative joint disease of bilateral knees and lower back with history of back surgery. Axis IV. Multiple surgical health problems. Axis V. Global Assessment of Functioning equivalent to 40. OPINION: The Veteran continues to suffer from symptoms of depression. The Veteran suffers from chronic pain. Has difficulty ambulating. Has hopeless, helpless, worthless feelings. The veteran has symptoms of PTSD related to intrusive thoughts, flashbacks, nightmares of the past. He has avoidance behavior to watching anything relating to war as well as crowds. He gets anxious and nervous. He gets hypervigilant with loud sounds. The Veteran, in addition, has multiple physical health issues; two major problems being Meniere's syndrome with constant dizziness and feelings of nauseous and difficulty with ambulation secondary to the same, and has to walk with the help of a cane as well as having problems with ambulation and balance secondary to arthritis of his knees. The Veteran had a 1961 right knee injury. He has had arthritis. He has had back injury and has had back problems. In addition,, he has heart problems, thyroid problems, cholesterol problems, GERD, etc. The Veteran's evaluation by Dr. -----on 7/29/04 indicated that he was unable to work since 1985 due to back injury and Veterans evaluation of 7/12/2005 of Dr. ------- ( C & P exam) indicated PTSD and associated with moderately severe to severe major depression with the statement that physical and emotional condition had affected him socially, industrially, as well as occupationally, matter being further compounded by his numerous physical problems including poor hearing and back pain. As far as opinion of impact of service connected disabilities a whole on his ability to secure or maintain gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. The Veteran has suffered from multiple physical and psychiatric health issues prior to 1/22/2007 and the service connection was in effect for PTSD and right knee disorder at that time with PTSD evaluated at 50% and right knee as 10% disabling. The Veteran has suffered from PTSD along with right knee condition as well as other multiple physical health problems for the last several years, and Veteran has not been able to work since 1985 with educations being 8 years of grade school with GED later in service and experiencing work as a supervisor for a construction company and unable to work full time since 1985. The Veteran has multiple physical health problems including service connected conditions as mentioned above which affect him severely with any kind of gainful employment or maintaining any gainful employment or substantial gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. The Veteran did start with his back injury, unable to work, but over time the Veteran has had symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, right knee injury, chronic pain, balance problems, Meniere's disease, and multiple health issues which affect him on a day-to-day basis with physical and emotional issues affecting him in a negative way with social, occupational functioning including mood. The GAF is reflective of severity of Axis I diagnosis which is severe. The Veteran's condition does affect him severely in a negative manner. As far as ability to secure or maintain gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. 3) C & P by medical doctor is too lengthy but in-a-nutshell he also said my service-connected knee injuries made me unemployable including sedentary prior to 1/22/2007. Since all these issues were remanded to the RO, I have been awarded 100% secular for Meniere's but these reports must now go back to the BVA for a decision on IU. I don't know what the results will be, however, if she awards IU it would be back pay at 100% rate for two years prior to the original date of 100%. Any comments? Jim 501st I have another question. I applied for aa after I was awarded 100% for meniere's, It was awarded but only back to the date I applied, Which seemed right at the time. Since the Brady decision I wonder if I should request an earlier effective date at least too the date of my C&P which is the date they used for the award? The reason I ask this questions because the C&P examiner stated in her report (The Veteran has a gait problem and this would prevent him from performing many activities of daily living without assistance.) This case will now be returned to the BVA for a finale decision. should I bring this up soothe Judge consider it ? Thanks Jim 501st
  12. This post is very interesting because I meet the criteria of the original question. 1) I was denied an increase from 50% to 70% in 2004 for PTSD. (I filed an IU the same time I filed for the 70% increase. Both these claims were denied so I appealed this to the BVA.) 2) I was denied a right knee injury in 2005. 3) I was awarded 30% hearing loss in 2007 but was denied Meniere's Disease 1/22/07. 4) I applied for left knee disability as a residual to the right knee. These all went before the BVA judge at the end of 2009. In her decision, she service connected the right knee which the RO assigned 10% disability. She also service connected the Meniere's Disease which the RO had no choice but to award 100% permanent and total because of the evidence in their possession. She remanded the left knee residual which was service connected and awarded 10%. She also remanded the IU. (I applied for Aide and Attendance and was awarded at the L 1/2 SMC.) This is where it is becoming very interesting. March 4, 2011 I had three C & P's for IU. The question to all three examiner's was "Is this veteran unemployable prior to 1/22/07." 1) One C & P was for hearing loss and under "Please describe how the veterans disabilities impact his ability to secure or maintain gainful employment." Based on the veteran's hearing loss, his ability to communicate effectively is severely impaired. Impaired communication can result in a difficulty working environment compromising productivity. People with hearing loss have difficulty getting and keeping a job. Those that have employment need communication accommodations to function most effectively. However, due to uncertainty or fear, employers are ofter unwilling to hire hard of hearing. This is illegal under various laws, but still extremely common. In the MarkeTrak VIII study of more than 40,000 households in the US on earnings and unemployment rates, hearing loss revealed a deleterious impact. (The Hearing Journal Oct. 2010 Volume 63, Issue 10). (I failed to mention that earlier in her report she had my hearing as severe to profound in both ears.) 2) Psychiatric report for PTSD. DIAGNOSTIC IMPRESSION: Axis I: Post-traumatic stress disorder, major depressive disorder. Axis II. No diagnosis. Axis III. Meniere's syndrome, traumatic arthritis of knees, degenerative joint disease of bilateral knees and lower back with history of back surgery. Axis IV. Multiple surgical health problems. Axis V. Global Assessment of Functioning equivalent to 40. OPINION: The Veteran continues to suffer from symptoms of depression. The Veteran suffers from chronic pain. Has difficulty ambulating. Has hopeless, helpless, worthless feelings. The veteran has symptoms of PTSD related to intrusive thoughts, flashbacks, nightmares of the past. He has avoidance behavior to watching anything relating to war as well as crowds. He gets anxious and nervous. He gets hypervigilant with loud sounds. The Veteran, in addition, has multiple physical health issues; two major problems being Meniere's syndrome with constant dizziness and feelings of nauseous and difficulty with ambulation secondary to the same, and has to walk with the help of a cane as well as having problems with ambulation and balance secondary to arthritis of his knees. The Veteran had a 1961 right knee injury. He has had arthritis. He has had back injury and has had back problems. In addition,, he has heart problems, thyroid problems, cholesterol problems, GERD, etc. The Veteran's evaluation by Dr. -----on 7/29/04 indicated that he was unable to work since 1985 due to back injury and Veterans evaluation of 7/12/2005 of Dr. ------- ( C & P exam) indicated PTSD and associated with moderately severe to severe major depression with the statement that physical and emotional condition had affected him socially, industrially, as well as occupationally, matter being further compounded by his numerous physical problems including poor hearing and back pain. As far as opinion of impact of service connected disabilities a whole on his ability to secure or maintain gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. The Veteran has suffered from multiple physical and psychiatric health issues prior to 1/22/2007 and the service connection was in effect for PTSD and right knee disorder at that time with PTSD evaluated at 50% and right knee as 10% disabling. The Veteran has suffered from PTSD along with right knee condition as well as other multiple physical health problems for the last several years, and Veteran has not been able to work since 1985 with educations being 8 years of grade school with GED later in service and experiencing work as a supervisor for a construction company and unable to work full time since 1985. The Veteran has multiple physical health problems including service connected conditions as mentioned above which affect him severely with any kind of gainful employment or maintaining any gainful employment or substantial gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. The Veteran did start with his back injury, unable to work, but over time the Veteran has had symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, right knee injury, chronic pain, balance problems, Meniere's disease, and multiple health issues which affect him on a day-to-day basis with physical and emotional issues affecting him in a negative way with social, occupational functioning including mood. The GAF is reflective of severity of Axis I diagnosis which is severe. The Veteran's condition does affect him severely in a negative manner. As far as ability to secure or maintain gainful employment prior to 1/22/2007. 3) C & P by medical doctor is too lengthy but in-a-nutshell he also said my service-connected knee injuries made me unemployable including sedentary prior to 1/22/2007. Since all these issues were remanded to the RO, I have been awarded 100% secular for Meniere's but these reports must now go back to the BVA for a decision on IU. I don't know what the results will be, however, if she awards IU it would be back pay at 100% rate for two years prior to the original date of 100%. Any comments? Jim 501st
  13. HvyGns38 I went back and read your original post and the ROs reason for denial. It seems to me they are denying service connection and that you have Meniere's at this time. This is completely ludicrous and as I said before for whatever reason the VA does not like to award a claim for Meniere's. From my experience with the VA, you have to take all the loose ends in your claim and organize them so that a third grader can understand them. The way I did this is I took all the information that you have described in your claim along with my service medical records to a private audiologist and she tied it all together for me. I think the most important thing she said in her IMO is this veteran has a diagnosis of Meniere's Disease and I have examined thoroughly his service medical records and concluded that his hearing loss while in service (documented), dizziness while in service (documented) was the early stages of Meniere's Disease and has progressed to full Meniere's to date. THE MOST IMPORTANT THING ON THIS IMO IS I HAVE EXAMINED HIS SERVICE MEDICAL RECORDS. I am not that good with words but you get the jest of what I am saying. Maybe someone else can explain it better. Jim 501st
  14. I am 100% meniere's. I fought the same battle you are fighting. My claim also should have been granted on my original claim. I was sent for a c&p, performed by a Nurse practitioner who decided I had the disease as bad as it gets. Her opinion outweighed all the specialist who had diagnosed my condition and service connection. I had gone to an Audiologist with all my smc's and she wrote an IMO service connecting the meniere's. This piece of evidence was not mentioned in the ros denial. I ended up appealing to the BVA. Believe it or not it was this IMO that the Judge awarded me service connection, and it was sent back to the RO and they had to rate me with the evidence they had,which was a hundred percent. I THINK THIS WHAT WAS MEANT BY SOME REAL MEAT ON THE BONE. Those folks at the RO don't like to admit they were wrong, and once they make a decision they don't like to change it. At this point I would drive directly to the RO and talk to my representative taking all of my documentation with me and see if he could get my NOD reversed and request a reconsideration. I know this is a little unorthodox but it is exactly what I did. For whatever reason the VA does not like to award Meniere's Disease. PS. Josephine, it has been a long time since I have talked to you and we both know each others conditions so I want to pass on something that seems to have helped me. I was at the point I could no longer walk without the aide of my wife or canes so my ENT decided to try something new. He inserted a tube into my affected ear and injected one of the mycin drugs directly into it once a week for six weeks. This helped to the point that I could walk by myself again so he decided to do a second series. I am happy to say that I can now walk by myself. I still stagger and still stay dizzy and sick but am self sufficient again. You might want to talk to your ENT. Hope this helps, Jim 501st
  15. If I told you, then I'd have to............................................. ! THAT'S PROBABLY A TRUE STATEMENT. make NO MISTAKE ABOUT IT, THE Kennedy LEGACY WILL NEVER BE TARNISHED BY WHAT DIDN'T HAPPEN IN LAOS. Take it to the bank.
  16. This is very interesting. I am a case sensitive seven and I have had one hell of a time with the VA and my claims. I have been told that no one at the RO I work with has a security clearance that high, BUT SOMEONE WILL GET BACK WITH ME. The ten or so times I have been told this someone from another State called me back once, and then I was told nothing. I have been able to work around the edges and get 100% meniere's 50% PTSD 10% right knee (I HAD A BAD FALL THAT WAS IN MY SMC'S, BUT NO ONE HAS BEEN ABLE TO EXPLAIN THE SHRAPNEL IN THE RIGHT KNEE.), and 10% left knee. with claims still pending. , and 10% left knee. All of us who went on special missions are aware of our security clearance's and the terms of the security agreements we signed. Most missions have been declassified but some will never be. Ask me how I know, in my case it has been nearly fifty years. I served during the cold war period from late 1960 to late 1963. It was a world in turmoil. The Bay of Pigs, Laos, East Berlin, the u-2 incidence the Cuban missile crisis The Bay of Pigs, Laos, East Berlin, the u-2 incidence the Cuban missile crisis,and the one no one knows about ( the integration of OLE MISS where we had 30 000 federal troops and lots of blood. We in the 101st lived out of a duffel bags for three years. Knowing what I know about the Kennedy era I would be very cautious about filling out a form on the internet about a mission that is still classified from that era That being said I hope the sight you post is ligitimate as it could aide many veteran's who are cought in the VA web with special op mission injuries, however I would also be sure they have been declassified. Just my opinion. Jim 501st
  17. I heard an add on talk radio while traveling through Virginia last week. I hope the electric votes to pass this. Jim 501st
  18. Thanks from all. Yes Josephine I am the one who staggered into the WV. state trooper at the state fair. It is always fun when my Wife forgets and leaves me loose in a crowd. I sure meet alot of strangers. If I remember correctly you too suffer from this same disease. You have to have it to know how debilitating it can be. Berta I do have a few question concerning my claim, 1. I already had an award of 30% hearing , 10% tinnitus which went away and was included in the meniere's decision. I also have a 50% rating for ptsd and now a 10 % rating for right knee. This gives me a single 100 % plus a 50% and a10%. For the S award does the 50% and 10%, which comes to 55% round up to the 60%. If It doesn't I still have a shot with the Left knee which is on remand as a residual to the right knee. 2. A&A- On the reason for decision the rater quoted a paragraph from my C&P report as follows.(The VA examination dated January 7, 2008, showed that you experience dizziness when you sit up in bed. You have constant dizziness and vertigo, and also have constant gait problems, You have difficulty getting up out of a chair and you have a noticeable gait disturbance and lean towards the left. Your gait would prevent you from performing many activities of daily living without assistance. Based upon the evidence, an evaluation of 100 percent is warranted for your Meniere's disease.) My Wife does assist me with more than I would like to discuss, but my question is . Doesn't this decision as written qualify me for A&A? If it does Qualify, what level would a rater assign? What should I do to bring these items to the attention of the RO. Please don't think I don't appreciate the award I have. I DO, but I think it possibly should have been rate a little higher.I would like opinions as I don't want to clutter up the system if it is unwarranted. Thanks Jim 501st
  19. I got a decision for Meniere's today. The BVA service connected it Jan.14 2010. The RO-AMC rated me 100% PT Feb.4 2010. I recieved my decision today. I'm still numb, I filed a form 9 June 2009, Had a BVA hearing Oct. 30 2009, Decision granted service connection right knee and Meniere's disease Jan. 14 2010. AMC rated meniere's 100% total back to Feb 2007 and right knee 10% back to Oct. 2005 Feb. 4 2010 God Bless Jim 501st
  20. <H1 id=header>I have re-read my decision from the BVA granting Meniere's Disease and right knee. In both decisions she stated the veteran and his wife's lay opinion do constitute competent evidence and provide probative information. Then she made reference to the case I posted and others. I copied and pasted this CVA case and put in bold print at the top what I think she was referring to in my case. Notice if the lay person's evidence is later substantiated by a professional medical person it holds a lot of credibility. For instance, in my case I got of the military in September 1963. Our family doctor from 1963 to 1975 died and his records were unobtainable. She used my wife and my testimony for this lapse of time since medical records from 1975 to present were obtainable. I was first treated for my right knee in 1976 after service. The records pick up for vertigo in 1980. I was officially diagnosed with Meniere's Disease in 2005 by a VA ENT. I had my first surgery on my right knee in 1994 (waiting for knee replacement at present). I made this brief because I have read so many opinions on lay testimony and even though I may have missed it, I have never seen a judge grant under this CVA decision. I hope it helps some other VET. Jim 501st Vet.App. 201, 204 (1992). In certain situations, lay evidence may be used to diagnose a veteran’s medical condition. See Jandreau v. Nicholson, 492 F.3d 1372, 1377 (2007) (holding that lay evidence may be used to diagnose a condition when “(1) a layperson is competent to identify the medical condition, (2) the layperson is reporting a contemporaneous medical diagnosis, or (3) lay testimony describing symptoms at the time supports a later diagnosis by a medical professional “); Barr v. Nicholson, 21 Vet.App. 303, 307 (2007) (stating that “[l]ay testimony is competent . . . to establish the presence of observable symptomatology and ‘may provide sufficient support for a claim of service connection’” (quoting Layno v. Brown, 6 Vet.App. 465, 469 (1994))); Washington v. Nicholson, 21 Vet.App. 191, 195 (2007) (holding that, “[a]s a layperson, an appellant is competent to provide information regarding visible, or otherwise observable, symptoms of disability”). Further, lay evidence maybe competent to show continuity of symptomatology under 38 C.F. R. § 3.303(:D. See Davidson, ___F.3d at___, slip op. at 3 (rejecting the view that “competent medical evidence is Veteranclaims’s Blog</H1> December 27, 2009 <H3 class=storytitle>Hypertension, Board Unsubstantiated Medical Conclusion citing Colvin v. Derwinski, Harmon v. Shinseki, No. 07-3778</H3>Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: Harmon v. Shinseki, No. 07-3778; Colvin v. Derwinski; Unsubstantiated medical conclusion; hypertension; — veteranclaims @ 11:52 pm Building on the Colvin v. Derwinski post of yesterday, we found this October 2009 single judge decision that emphasizes an example where the Veterans Court found that the Board sought to issue it’s own unsubstantiated medical opinion. If you recall this is a specific point that the PVA article drew attention to, something to look for when reviewing Board decisions ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ In addition, in determining whether the medical evidence is sufficient to make a decision on the claim, the Board must ensure that it does not rely on its own unsubstantiated medical conclusions. See Colvin v. Derwinski, 1 Vet.App. 171, 175 (holding that the Board must point to medical basis other than its own unsubstantiated opinion to support its decision), overruled on other grounds by Hodge v. West, 155 F.3d 1356 (1998). Although the Board noted that the appellant had elevated BP readings of 128 over 92 and 132 over 84 during service (R. at 5), the Board concluded, without support, that “there is no evidence establishing that the veteran’s hypertension occurred during his military service.” R. at 6 (emphasis added). Whether the in-service BP readings were indicative of hypertension appears to be a medical question, especiallyin the absence of any reasons or bases from the Board as to how it determined that the in-service readings revealed normal BP. See Colvin, 1 Vet.App. at 175. +++++++++++++++++++++++++++ U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims . 07-3778 Harmon-3778.pdf —————————————————- Designated for electronic publication only UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR VETERANS CLAIMS NO. 07-3778 CARL J. HARMON, APPELLANT, V. ERIC K. SHINSEKI, SECRETARY OF VETERANS AFFAIRS, APPELLEE. Before MOORMAN, Judge. MEMORANDUM DECISION Note: Pursuant to U.S. Vet. App. R. 30(a), this action may not be cited as precedent. MOORMAN,Judge: Theappellant, CarlJ.Harmon,appealsthroughcounselaSeptember6, 2007, Board of Veterans’ Appeals (Board) decision that denied his claim for service connection for hypertension. Record (R.) at 1-12. The appellant filed a brief, and the Secretary filed a brief. Claims remanded by the Board are not on appeal. The Court has jurisdiction pursuant to 38 U.S.C. §§ 7252(a) and 7266(a) to review the September 6, 2007, Board decision. A single judge may conduct that review because the outcome in this case is controlled by the Court’s precedents and “is not reasonably debatable.” Frankel v. Derwinski, 1 Vet.App. 23, 25-26 ( 1990). For the following reasons, the Court will vacate the Board’s September 2007 decision as to the claim for service connection for hypertension and remand the matter for readjudication. I. FACTS Mr. Harmon served on active duty in the U.S. Navy from May 1973 to May 1975 and again from August 1975 to January 1979. R. at 2. During his 1972 enlistment examination, Mr. Harmon’s blood pressure (BP) was recorded at 134 over 80. R. at 23. In May 1975, he suffered an allergic reaction and was taken to the emergency room. R at 30. At that time, his BP was 134 over 84. R. at 30. During his May 1975 separation examination, Mr. Harmon’s BP was recorded at 129 over 92. R. at 32. His BP was checked three more times, twice on May 8, and again on May 9. R. at 32. His BP readings on those days were 112 over 62, 118 over 66, and 110 over 66, respectively. R. at 32. In March 1976 another BP reading was taken and was 110 over 64. R. at 276. A May 1976 BP reading was 120 over 82. R. at 209. In September of 1978 BP readings were again taken and recorded at 116 over 80, 110 over 74, and 118 over 66. R. at 260, 263, 279. During Mr. Harmon’s December 1978 separation examination his BP was recorded at 108 over 78. R. at 40-44. Beginning in 2000 through 2006, Mr. Harmon was diagnosed and treated for a number of different conditions, including hypertension. R. at 139-98, 340-47. In July 2003, Mr. Harmon submitted an application for service connection, in part, for hypertension. R. at 142, 143-54. In February 2004, the VA regional office ( RO) denied Mr. Harmon’s claim on the basis that there was no medical evidence to establish the existence of hypertension during service or within one year of service and there was no competent medical evidence to establish a nexus between Mr. Harmon’s current diagnosis of hypertension and his military service. R. at 297-302. The rating decision noted that service connection may be granted on a presumptive basis under 38 C.F.R. § 3.309, but that Mr. Harmon did not establish the existence of hypertension of the requisite severity within the specified period of time after military service. R. at 299. He submitted a Notice of Disagreement on April 1, 2004. R. at 304-05. The RO issued a Statement of the Case in January 2006. R. at 310-29. Mr. Harmon perfected an appeal. R. at 34, 440. During a hearing before the Board, Mr. Harmon reported that he had hypertension prior to leaving service. R. at 427. He testified that he was “held over” for three days during his second discharge examination as a result of high BP readings. R. at 427. He stated that he did not have additional high BP readings again until the 1980s. R. at 428. On September 6, 2007, the Board issued the decision here on appeal. R. at 1-12. The Board denied Mr. Harmon’s claim for service connection for hypertension because there was no evidence of hypertension during service or within one year of service and there was no competent medical evidence of record to establish a nexus between the Mr. Harmon’s present diagnosis of hypertension and his military service. R. at 1-7. In his brief, Mr. Harmon asserts that the Board’s decision is clearly erroneous because the 2 Board ignored evidence of record and that the Secretary failed in his duty to assist by not ordering a medical nexus examination. Appellant’s Brief (App. Br.) at 14,16. The appellant asks the Court to reverse and remand the Board decision on appeal. App. Br. at 1. In his brief, the Secretary argues that there is a plausible basis for the Board’s decision and that Mr. Harmon has not demonstrated that prejudicial errorhas been committed. Secretary’s Brief (Sec’yBr.) at 4. The Secretaryasks the Court to affirm the Board decision. Sec’y Br. at 8. II. ANALYSIS A. Service Connection Establishing service connection generally requires medical or, in certain circumstances, lay evidence of (1) a current disability; (2) an in-service incurrence or aggravation of a disease or injury; and (3) a nexus between the claimed in-service disease or injury and the present disability. See Davidson v. Shinseki, ___F.3d___, No. 2009-7075, 2009 WL 2914339 (Fed. Cir. Sept. 14, 2009), Hickson v. West, 12 Vet.App. 247, 253 (1999); Caluza v. Brown, 7 Vet.App. 498, 506 (1995), aff’d per curiam, 78 F.3d 604 (Fed. Cir. 1996) (table); see also Heuer v. Brown, 7 Vet.App. 379, 384 (1995). A finding of service connection, or no service connection, is a finding of fact reviewed under the “clearly erroneous” standard in 38 U.S.C. § 7261(a)(4). See Swann v. Brown, 5 Vet.App. 229, 232 (1993). “A factual finding ‘is clearlyerroneous when although there is evidence to support it, the reviewing court on the entire evidence is left with the definite and firm conviction that a mistake has been committed.’” Herseyv. Derwinski, 2 Vet.App. 91, 94 ( 1992) (quoting United States v. U.S. Gypsum Co., 333 U.S. 364 (1948)). The Court may not substitute its judgment for the factual determinations of the Board on issues of material fact merely because the Court would have decided those issues differently in the first instance. See id. Moreover, the Board is required to provide a written statement of the reasons or bases for its findings and conclusions on all material issues of fact and law presented on the record; the statement must be adequate to enable a claimant to understand the precise basis for the Board’s decision, as well as to facilitate review in this Court. See 38 U.S.C. § 7104(d)(1); Allday v. Brown, 7 Vet.App. 517, 527 (1995); Simon v. Derwinski, 2 Vet.App. 621, 622 (1992); Gilbert v. Derwinski, 1 Vet.App. 49, 57 (1990). To comply with this requirement, the Board must analyze the credibility 3 and probative value of the evidence, account for the evidence that it finds to be persuasive or unpersuasive, and provide the reasons for its rejection of any material evidence favorable to the claimant. See Caluza, 7 Vet.App at 506; Gabrielson v. Brown, 7 Vet.App. 36, 39-40 (1994). InthiscasetheBoardfound that there wasno nexusbetweentheappellant’scurrentcondition and his military service. R. at 7. As a basis for that determination the Board cites a lack of medical evidence indicating that the appellant suffered from hypertension while in service. R. at 5-7. The Board decision indicates that the lay evidence offered by the appellant to support his claim was excluded from the Board’s consideration of this case. R. at 6-7. Specifically, the Board stated that “thereis no indication that [theappellant] or his representativepossess therequisiteknowledge, skill, experience, training, or education to qualify as medical experts for his statements to be considered competent evidence.” R. at 6-7 (citing Espiritu v. Derwinski, 2 Vet.App. 492 (1992)). The Board also stated that lay persons are not competent to offer testimony regarding diagnosis or causation. R. at 6-7. The Board committed error by categorically excluding the appellant’s lay testimony without further analysis. In its role as factfinder, the Board must first “determin[e] whether lay evidence is credible in and of itself, i.e., because of possible bias, conflicting statements, etc.” Buchanan v. Nicholson, 451 F.3d 1331, 1334-37 (Fed. Cir. 2006); see also Miller v. Derwinski, 3 Vet.App. 201, 204 (1992). In certain situations, lay evidence may be used to diagnose a veteran’s medical condition. See Jandreau v. Nicholson, 492 F.3d 1372, 1377 (2007) (holding that lay evidence may be used to diagnose a condition when “(1) a layperson is competent to identify the medical condition, (2) the layperson is reporting a contemporaneous medical diagnosis, or (3) lay testimony describing symptoms at the time supports a later diagnosis by a medical professional “); Barr v. Nicholson, 21 Vet.App. 303, 307 (2007) (stating that “[l]ay testimony is competent . . . to establish the presence of observable symptomatology and ‘may provide sufficient support for a claim of service connection’” (quoting Layno v. Brown, 6 Vet.App. 465, 469 (1994))); Washington v. Nicholson, 21 Vet.App. 191, 195 (2007) (holding that, “[a]s a layperson, an appellant is competent to provide information regarding visible, or otherwise observable, symptoms of disability”). Further, lay evidence maybe competent to show continuity of symptomatology under 38 C.F. R. § 3.303(:). See Davidson, ___F.3d at___, slip op. at 3 (rejecting the view that “competent medical evidence is 4 required . . . [when] the determinative issue involves either medical etiologyor a medical diagnosis.” (citing Jandreau, 492 F.3d at 1376-77)); Savage v. Gober, 10 Vet.App. 488, 497 (1997). When considering lay evidence, the Board should determine whether the veteran’s disability is the type of disability for which lay evidence is competent. See Jandreau, 492 F.3d at 1377, (cited in Robinson v. Shinseki, 312 F. App’x. 336, 339, 2009 WL 524737 (Fed. Cir. 2009). If the disability is of the type for which lay evidence is competent, the Board must weigh that evidence against the other evidence of record in making its determination regarding the existence of service connection. See Buchanan, 451 F.3d at1334-37. The Board indicated in its analysis that it did not consider the lay testimony of the appellant because such evidence is categorically incompetent when offered for purposes of determining medical causation or diagnosis. R. at 6-7. This is an incorrect application of law. See Jandreau, 492 F.2d at 1377, Buchanan, 451 F.3d at 1335. Accordingly, a remand is necessary to allow the Board to correctly consider the lay evidence and appropriately weigh the evidence in accordance with law. B. Duty To Assist – Medical Nexus Examination Pursuant to 38 U.S.C. § 5103A, the Secretary’s duty to assist includes, in appropriate cases, the dutyto conduct a thorough and contemporaneous medical examination. See Green v. Derwinski, 1 Vet.App. 121, 124 (1991). The Secretary’s duty to assist requires that he provide a VA medical examination to a claimant when there is (1) competent evidence of a current disability or persistent or recurrent symptoms of a disability; (2) evidence establishing that an event, injury, or disease occurred in service or, for certain diseases, manifestation of the disease during an applicable presumptive period for which the claimant qualifies; and (3) an indication that the disability or persistent orrecurrent symptomsofthedisabilitymaybeassociated withtheveteran’s serviceorwith another service-connected disability; but (4) insufficient competent medical evidence on file for the Secretary to make a decision on the claim. See 38 U.S.C. § 5103A(d); Paralyzed Veterans of Am. v. Sec’y of Veterans Affairs, 345 F.3d 1334, 1355-57 (Fed. Cir. 2003); Wells v. Principi, 326 F.3d 1381, 1384 (Fed. Cir. 2003); McLendon v. Nicholson, 20 Vet.App. 79, 81 ( 2006); 38 C.F.R. §3.159©(4)(i)(2009). TheBoard’s” ultimateconclusionthatamedicalexaminationisnot necessary pursuant to section 5103A(d)(2) is reviewed under the ‘arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with law’ standard of review.” McLendon, 20 Vet.App. at 81; see 5 Haas v. Shinseki, 22 Vet.App. 385, 388 (2009). The Board’s underlying determinations whether the appellant has a current disability and whether the appellant suffered an in-service event, injury, or disease are findings of fact subject to the “clearly erroneous” standard of review. Id. at 82; see also 38 U.S.C. § 7261(a)(4). The categorical exclusion of the lay evidence of record in this case from the Board’s analysis of the appellant’s claim necessarily indicates that the Board did not properly analyze the third prong of 38 U.S.C. § 5103A(d) when it determined that a VA medical examination was not warranted. R. at 6. The Board has the authority to determine whether lay evidence is competent and to appropriately weigh such evidence, but it must make those determinations based upon the standard articulated in Buchanan, Jandreau, and Davidson as discussed above. If there is competent lay evidence, such evidence must be considered when determining whether or not to order a medical nexus examination. This Court has held that 38 U.S.C. § 5103A(d)(2)(B) establishes a “low threshold” requirement for determining whether or not a medical nexus examination is warranted. McLendon, 20 Vet.App. at 83. Consequently, in order for the Secretary to fulfill his duty to assist the veteran, the Board must make a determination under the appropriate legal standard as to whether or not the offered layevidence is competent, and, if the evidence is competent, whether that evidence meets the low threshold described in McLendon for ordering a medical nexus examination. In addition, in determining whether the medical evidence is sufficient to make a decision on the claim, the Board must ensure that it does not rely on its own unsubstantiated medical conclusions. See Colvin v. Derwinski, 1 Vet.App. 171, 175 (holding that the Board must point to medical basis other than its own unsubstantiated opinion to support its decision), overruled on other grounds by Hodge v. West, 155 F.3d 1356 (1998). Although the Board noted that the appellant had elevated BP readings of 128 over 92 and 132 over 84 during service (R. at 5), the Board concluded, without support, that “there is no evidence establishing that the veteran’s hypertension occurred during his military service.” R. at 6 (emphasis added). Whether the in-service BP readings were indicative of hypertension appears to be a medical question, especiallyin the absence of any reasons or bases from the Board as to how it determined that the in-service readings revealed normal BP. See Colvin, 1 Vet.App. at 175. 6 III. CONCLUSION After consideration of the appellant’s and the Secretary’s briefs, and a review of the record, the Board’s September 6, 2007, decision is VACATED as to the claim for service connection for hypertension and the matter is REMANDED to the Board for further proceedings consistent with this decision. DATED: October 14, 2009 Copies to: Kenneth L. LaVan General Counsel (027) 7 google_protectAndRun("render_ads.js::google_render_ad", google_handleError, google_render_ad); Ads by Google OWCP Lawyer Call Jeff Zeelander for help with your OWCP claim: 215-545-2132 www.owcplawyer.com/Disability Appeal Don't give up! Tens of thousands helped since 1984. Nationwide. www.Allsup.comFed Disability Retirement Our Federal Disability Retirement attorneys can help you. 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  21. I just thought I would Share the good news. I had a BVA hearing Oct. 30 2009. I got my decision on The 14th of Jan.. I had 5 issues. I will only mention the two that were granted at this time. She used my meniere's disease which is the big one, because when I had my C&P The lady that did it gave me a 100% diagnosis in her medical exam and ( cerebral gait constant, Leans to the left and wife had to aide him for balance.) Also said I could not perform a lot of my daily activities at home with out assistance but she denied service connection. As I said the BVA judge service connected it. Also she service connected my right Knee which at my C&p would have been rated a 40% disability due to range of motion and arthritis. I would also like to mention that she used Dr. Bash's IMO solely for her decision which the local RO refused to acknowledge. I had three other items that were remanded back to the RO for further adjudication which I feel sure I will win two of. I feel sure the Meniere's will get me 100% grant on top of all the other awards that I already have (70%) plus the ones the judge granted on the knee. This is just a brief and I will be glad to go into further detail on the decisions if anyone wants further information. PS I found it very interesting that the BVA judge cited two CCVA cases in which my wife and my opinions were as valid as medical opinions and used them as reference in her decision. Jim, 501st
  22. I will not go into details of my case at this time, but a short statement and a question. I had a televised DRO hearing in Dec. 2008. It covered four issues. I got a ssoc and denial on all four issues in March of 2009'( I also got a copy of the transcript which was a joke. Everything I said was not legible, maybe three words per sentence connected by lines.) My rep. advised me to fill out a form 9. He said if I wanted a televised hearing it would take about two years at the Huntington RO. If I could afford to go to DC it would probably be within a year so I elected to go to DC. I filled out the form 9 in May 2009. I turned my case over to a Lawyer the 1st of June 2009. I received a letter on the 15Th of Oct. 2009 advising me I had an appointment the 30 of Oct 2009 at the Huntington ro with a traveling VBA Judge. I was represented by Jan Dill law firm which has an office in Charleston. They had just received a copy of my c-file a week before and when I went for my appointment a week before my hearing they had already gotten an IME on the claim for my Knees. I noticed that the Judge was completely familiar with my case and ask if it was alright if we waived the right to the hearing in DC and had it there. Of course I agreed. I also noticed that she phrased her questions in a manner that I had to give an answers that supported my claim on all four issues. After the hearing My Lawyers wanted to meet with my wife and me in private. They told us they had eight other cases before that Judge that week and I was the only one that the Judge ask leading questions. The Lawyers also had a brief meeting with the Judge after the hearing, before meeting with my wife and me. In our meeting they were absolutely gleeful and told me I would have my decision within two to three months. My question is. Does this Judge go back to Dc and make the decisions on each case or is it turned over to a board or what and does this case sound like normal protocol.
  23. I haven't posted in quite a while. I spent the winter in sunny Florida. The motor home parks we stayed in had limited Internet access. I am 50% ptsd, 30% hearing, and 10% tinnitus= 70%. I had a DRO. hearing on knee injury , Meniere's, and neurogenic bladder. I recently got a decision and all was denied. I also received a copy of my transcript where I made my case on the above claims. To make it short the entire transcript was eligible except every thing I said. On every reply and statement I made during this hearing the transcript shows three or four words in every sentence connected by lines. I can't even tell what I said. In short the DRO couldn't either so he just copied and pasted previous decisions. My problem is I have until the 27 of April (this month) to file a form nine. I decided I would use a Lawyer as I am getting no where at this point. All the evidence is in my c-file to grant these claims. I talked to a national law firm that has an office in my area. I have an appointment on the 13Th of April. He advised me to bring soc and ssoc to his office and he would fax a form 9 that day. My rep. Who's office is in the RO's building called me yesterday and ( He was my rep at the hearing) said I should file the form nine with him so he could get it stamp dated. As we talk, I told him about the transcript and he said I should request another hearing at the RO before it goes to the BVA. He said there was a box I should check on the form to make this happen. I ask him if I should consider a lawyer at this time and he said no, that I needed to present more evidence and all a lawyer could do was argue the legal aspects of my case. I'm a little confused at this point as I thought a Lawyer would aide me in getting the evidence together that he needed to present at the BVA. If anyone has any experience in this area I could sure use some advice pronto. Thanks in advance Jim 501st
  24. I had the same thing happen to me. I made an appointment with my rep. who's office is in the Huntington RO building. He had my C-FILE on his desk when I arrived. You guessed it. the computer said I had not filed a form 9. The c-file said other wise. So I recovered my eed of two years on meniere's. As Pete said on another post you can make an appointment to see a counselor at the RO and it may be in your c-file. If so it can be corrected quickly.
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