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Ok folks, In the midst of researching attorneys to replace my VSO, I got a call from the VSO who was working/not working on my claims. He wanted to get a few more details to work up his Form 646. After a week of speaking back and forth with him, he came to the conclusion that the VA had not reviewed several medical reports, including some of my active duty USAF medical records. (If the VSO would have woke up years ago, and saw that, maybe I would not have had to scream from the mountain tops for the past few years.) I know that it has been my fault all along though for keeping the VSO there. Meanwhile, I get a call from the Houston VARO, who wants to discuss a couple of my FOIA requests for the curriculum vitae of the C&P nurse practitioner and family practice doctor (who from a Google search is actually a Family Practice guy who specializes in collagen and beauty cream treatments in Florida.) They also wanted to discuss my FOIA request for the complete bloodwork lab results and x-ray reports from my last QTC C&P examination (with the collagen guy). The thing they wanted to "discuss" is that they can't seem to obtain the curriculum vitae for either medical practitioner, one from Veterans Evaluation Services and the other the QTC Collagen King. They also wanted to discuss that they can't seem to find the bloodwork lab results, nor the x-rays (and x-ray report), which were all done at the same QTC location near Fort Polk, Louisiana at the same time as the C&P, even though "some of the information" is actually described in the C&P report, which was half completed, with no "rationale" filled in, and excerpts of my time in the Army, although I have never served in the Army, and have always been USAF riff raff. Meanwhile, my VSO guy calls back and says that he will send me my Form 646, and recommended a DRO hearing, and that I request one in writing, so I did. I'm also still kicking myself for still riding this VSO wave, when I should have pulled the ripcord and hired an attorney early on as about 90% of you recommended (and I'm still looking into it). I send one to Janesville in writing. I wait. I wait. I wait. Then I take a chance and call the Houston VARO back and request an update on everything. They tell me they will call me back. I wait. I wait. Then, they do call back and let me know they are still having trouble retrieving records, but that they received my request for a DRO hearing, and that they will forward the request on, warning me that it could be a year or more, and that they are still having hearings from requests from cases filed in 2008. I tell them that I filed mine in 2010, but I'll keep riding the wave. While this is happening, I get a letter from the VA stating that they have addressed one outstanding NOD regarding my dependents, siding with me. So I go back to waiting on the DRO Hearing notice. I wait. I wait. I wait. Then I call back. They say that the hearing request has been submitted, but cautioned that the wait time is still tremendous, and that if I wanted to, I could let them know that I would waive the hearing, and they would get me back on track for the BVA certification, which is still forever away also. I thought it over for about 5 seconds, and said no, I think I'll stand by my DRO hearing request. They seemed disappointed, and once again cautioned it could take months to years. I said it's already been like six and a half, so let the dice keep rolling. We parted ways with them saying that they would let "them" know that I still wanted a hearing, and that I could call back in a few months to check out the status of the request. I said thanks, and they gave me the usual sigh and "Thank you for your service." Such a tender moment. Then three....yes, THREE days later, I get a letter from the VA stating that a VA DRO Hearing has been scheduled for June 6th. I called the MIA VSO to ask him about the hearing, and to see what I needed. He was surprised, pulled me up on the computer, and acknowledged that he saw it too, still surprised, and advised that I need to wear a tie and show up an hour early to visit with him. I plan to be there, and will bring my medical records (hopefully orderly), and see what happens. Any advice on what to do? What not to do? What a ride! Mark
Good day all, in dec 15, I used a county VSO to help me submit paperwork, medical files and evidence, etc, and I was assigned the American Legion as my POA/representative. Since then, my VSO quit, so any question I have gets answered by a random other VSO at the office. It isn't exactly the best feeling, but my claim is prep for decision and I think I've completed all of my C&Ps and I definitely submitted any and all supporting medical documents and evidence to support my claim. I know eBenefits isn't accurate, but I've routinely noticed updates, such as my status moving backwards to gathering of evidence. I would call the 800 number that day and sure enough I would have another C&P scheduled for later that month. Anyways, my concern isn't so much with the accuracy of eBenefits. My my questions and concerns are: what should my expectations be of my VSO, or I guess that office. Will they be able to provide me updates before anyone at the VA? how often should I check in with them? I'm concerned because I've seen other folks post about how amazing their VSO is. I do understand it varies widely though. Also, what is the purpose of the American Legion? Should they be in contact with me? Do I expect to hear from them? The VSOs haven't answered my questions about the American Legion. I get the feeling it is a check in the box or just a formality. I just don't know what their purpose really is. I know it's a little late to be asking, but other than checking eBenefits often, I try to let it run its course. Any insight would be appreciated. Thanks.
Thursday, I spoke with my American Legion representative at the Houston VARO to check on my status. I usually do it once a month to see how things are percolating. He said that as of October 29th, my file had moved to "Special Ops", and he noted that it was probably because my claim was on of the ones that is over two years old. Anybody had their claim moved over to that section in the past? If so, does it mean a good thing? Or just another delay? I'm still in Gathering Dust stage on eBenefits, but still patiently watching the paint dry. Good luck to all of you, and happy Veterans Day tomorrow! Peace out! Mark
Like so many vets, I found this site while trying to gain some intel about what to expect from our guys at the VA....... looks promising.....