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Found 58 results

  1. Hello! First off, Thank you all! - for this website, your time, and your passion towards helping fellow veterans! Started the PEB process on active duty (2012 at the time), so I'm just trying to sort this out and find where things went wrong. The claims submitted among this process only listed 3 contentions - of which the DoD rated me unfit at 10% W/ severance pay, while the VA rated those conditions (totaled) to 40% upon exiting service. My story - First, I don't agree with the PEB findings, but I signed off on it at the time without a full understanding of "what I could claim", so once the ball got rolling I found myself trying to correct my own mistakes along the way. I want to particularly point out to the Experts here that signing off on my PEB, as well as false statements/misquotations made by an off base neurologist has been used against me in regard to denial for SC TBI. In one denial, they took the exam from the off base neuro i saw, and threw the (positive) other out - Denying me the benefit of the doubt, or even the 50-50 rule.... The situation now is that I have a second doctor, who wrote a Nexus concurring with the diagnosis and rationale of the specialist I was treated by. (So 2 doctors post-service vs. the 1 I saw who didn't have all the details, lay statements, and misquoted me or failed to check the appropriate boxes based on my own testimony. TLDR - I was awarded increase for 1 contention in 2016 to (a total of) 60% - Followed by SC and increase in another (1) contention for an overall rating (total) of 80% in 2017 - Some corrections were made and a rating was re-established with the proper EED and my new total is now 90% (as of late 2019) - it is now 2020 and I have 4 contentions that never made it to SC (yet!) - I experienced narrative changes as to why the VA was denying SC for TBI and 3 other issues - such as "missing diagnosis" - I had included a document from their own specialist specifically stating I was diagnosed with TBI and 2 exams giving extensive detail as to my symptoms/history. Again, thank you for all you have done, and all you continue to do for all of us. to Semper Fi !
  2. Hello, Quick background; I injured my back severely in Kuwait in 2013(I was 22) no proper medical exam or treatment at the peek of the injury just pumped full of pain meds. Once back in the states it still took months before Someone decided I actually needed an xray just to be told I was fine. There were times where I’d experience temporary paralysis below the waist, daily pain levels above 5, numbness, pinching and burning sensations in lower back and to be told nothing was wrong made me want to give up and suffer in silence because no1 seem to take me serious. However the pain was so intense I found myself in the ER sometimes twice a week with strange knots in my back that were shrugged off as muscle spasms and just given more pain meds. I was given a 10% rating after separating in 2014. I didn’t know what that meant or why. Almost 7yrs later the pain is worse back and forth with the VA with treatment that either aggravates or just doesn’t work and I recently discovered that I was diagnosed with sciatic nerve pain BUT it stated it didn’t come from work. I couldn’t believe it. I now live in MD near DC and although terribly discouraged feel I need to fight what seems to be a system that hasn’t cared for me properly since day 1 and appeal. The question is. IS IT WORTH IT? I paid out of pocket for X-rays and made some discoveries about my back that make much more since than what the VA tells me. Has anyone experienced anything similar?
  3. Hello everyone. I filed an appeal this past October 28th. Since the appeals process has changed and I am new to this, has anyone appealed a denied decision or a low rating recently and has received a decision on the appeal? If so, how long did it take to get a decision from the date you filed? I am just wondering how long the appeal takes. My claim was pretty quick, it took about 3 months which wasn't bad. Thank you all.
  4. Please, welcome new VET2VET podcast episode: https://youtu.be/waV5t0HPtbM Today we are joined by Thomas Wendel, DAV National area supervisor for West Cost Region. Thomas E. Wendel served in the U. S. Marine Corps from 1983 until 1997. Since 1999, Tom has worked assisting veterans in processing various entitlement claims on the local, state and federal levels; first in Clare County as a county service officer and then when he came to work for the Disabled American Veterans in 2000. In 2008 he was promoted to the position of supervisor of the DAV Service Office in Detroit and later he was promoted to the position of supervisor of the DAV National area for West Cost Region. DAV is America’s largest, most effective veterans service organizations dedicated to the needs of those injured, ill or wounded in service. We have more than 1,300 Chapters in communities nationwide to help make sure veterans from all generations and their families get the benefits and support they deserve. Today, nearly 1.3 million veterans belong to DAV, and we encourage you to add your voice to the cause. Our programs and free services help all veterans get the health, disability and financial benefits they earned. Take advantage of our benefits claims assistance, medical transportation and employment resources. Your local DAV Chapter is a great way to connect with fellow veterans in your area. ★ JOIN US IN OUR COMMITMENT TO YOU AND OUR FELLOW VETERANS ★ ▶ facebook.com/VETOVET2 ▶ itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/vet2vet/id1077206523?mt=2 ▶ twitter.com/VETOVET2 ▶ youtube.com/c/VETOVET2 ▶ plus.google.com/u/0/+VETOVET2 ▶ goo.gl/app/playmusic?ibi=com.google.PlayMusic&isi=691797987&ius=googleplaymusic&link=https://play.google.com/music/m/Iiqawbuzg7eviiyqm6xz7kju62m?t%3DVET2VET ▶ feeds.soundcloud.com/users/soundcloud:users:198832065/sounds.rss ▶ soundcloud.com/vet2vet ▶ stitcher.com/s?fid=80842&refid=stpr ★ LIMITED LIABILITY CLAUSE ★ THE INFORMATION AVAILABLE THROUGH THE VET2VET MAY INCLUDE INACCURACIES OR ERRORS. CHANGES ARE PERIODICALLY ADDED TO THE INFORMATION HEREIN. VET2VET MAY MAKE IMPROVEMENTS AND/OR CHANGES OF THE CONTENT AT ANY TIME. ADVICE RECEIVED VIA VET2VET SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON FOR PERSONAL, MEDICAL, LEGAL OR FINANCIAL DECISIONS AND YOU SHOULD CONSULT AN APPROPRIATE PROFESSIONAL FOR SPECIFIC ADVICE TAILORED TO YOUR SITUATION. IF YOU ARE DISSATISFIED WITH ANY PORTION OF VET2VET, YOUR SOLE AND EXCLUSIVE REMEDY IS TO DISCONTINUE CONSULTING VET2VET.
  5. This past Friday I received a decision from Department of Veterans Affairs Regional Office regarding a NOD that I had filed nearly two years ago. In October of 2016, I was awarded benefits at 70% retroactively from 2010. About 4 months prior to actually being approved, I requested that I be awarded TDIU as well. After all the dust settled, I was awarded TDIU back to June of 2016. However, my original claim was from January of 2010. As a result, I sent in a NOD requesting that TDIU be retroactive back to 2010. I was just mailed a letter from the VA stating that "Entitlement to an earlier effective date for the grant of Individual Unemployability was granted because the evidence shows you last gainfully worked on March 2, 2015... We have assigned an effective date of March 3, 2015, the day after you last worked... This decision represents a partial grant of benefits sought on appeal. My questions are: (1) Approximately how long before I receive the back pay? (2) Should I pursue the amount back to 2010, since the time from 2010 to March 2015, my work record is spottier than Swiss cheese and I really didn't have a consistent work record. (3) My son who was awarded Chapter 35 Educational benefits once I received TDIU in December of 2016, had just graduated from college (undergraduate), but was too late to have benefited from Chapter 35. But now since I have a new TDIU retro date dating back to his senior year in college, can he receive back monies for that one final year that he should have been entitled while in school? He has the award going forth, but was wondering if they'd pay him back pay for his last year of college since it now falls under my new onset (TDIU) date. How to proceed if its possible? Thanks so much in advance for all your help in this matter. Kevo
  6. This is not a question but a post on my RAMP journey since not much data is out there. On the 1st of February I received in the mail the option to opt into RAMP for my legacy appeal. Based on the goal of 120 days, this should be done if the goal is met by June, 1st, 2018. If average was counted from the average time for completion starting at when the VA processed RAMP, the estimation of completion was on/around April 6-16th. On February 8th I opted in to the Higher Level Review with the informal conference option selected through my attorney. I made that decision based on My appeal had already been pending for over 4 years with not a single status update after my NOD was accepted. Even though I do have a lawyer. The Higher Level Review appeal option (OPT-in only) is allowing the evidence submitted since the original appeal. (NOTE: Future Higher Level Reviews will only be a second look and will not allow new evidence. Only evidence submitted during the legacy appeal is accepted.) RAMP has a low participation rate, with presumably dedicated assets. First Milestone: On February 28th of 2018 my RAMP Opt in was finally processed and my legacy appeal was closed out. *The RAMP appeal did not show up on ebenefits but did show up on vets.gov along with a warning about my appeal being denied for RAMP because it was already slotted for the BVA. On follow-up with the VA I was told this was an error caused by RAMP not really fitting into the software/application of the online portals and that the only way to get information about the RAMP appeal was through an agent. The BVA error has since stopped appearing and now vets.gov simple says "Your legacy appeal has been closed because you opted into RAMP, at this time it is unknown when this will be completed" Second Milestone: On May 2nd of 2018 my informal conference was scheduled for the 15th of May. Roughly 45 days after the VA processed my RAMP opt in. On May 15th we had the informal call.My lawyer brought up many of the issues being contended. IE: Upper and Lower Back Injury cant be by VA law a single rating.IE: Documented Hearing LossIE: Migraines (Personal Doc did a DBQ and a VA Neurologist offered a Nexus statement)IE: Acquired Psychiatric Conditions. & That the VA had committed some duty to assist errors for a few other conditions.The Higher Level Reviewer agreed with much of what the lawyer said and said he could work with that and thought he could separate out the rating for the back and grant a higher rating for the upper back then the current rating before separation . He said he saw all over my file that the VA was treating me for PTSD and MDD and their was a nexus opinion from the VA to service connect. He said he could do the hearing loss too since i kept my service records that showed the in-service hearing loss. The migraines he thought he could work with too. The call went well and the lawyer was cautiously optimistic but still completely mistrustful. On 5/21/2018 I was told on a call with the VA that he had sent his decision for authorization. As of 6/7/2018 no further news and whenever I contact the VA i'm given the generic "Your VA Ramp Appeal has been assigned to a Higher Level Reviewer" and i'm not getting anymore answers.
  7. Hello good people of Hadit.com, I have a remanded appeal that was last updated on ebenefits on May 16th. I called the DAV to get a more detailed update and was told that the appeal is at the Houston Regional office and the last note says "VHA request to N grant". Would any of you have a idea of what this could mean? The receptionist at the DAV was puzzled as well as to what this entry could mean. Thanks in advance JFizz
  8. Sorry if this has been addressed before, but I was not able to find an answer anywhere else. After collecting dust for 480 days after filing an NOD with a DRO, my appeal has apparently entered a "Review" phase. According to the VA rep, the electronic system had a new note entered into my file a few weeks back stating that a DRO had begun to review the file. Can anyone offer insight into how long it could take from here to get to a DRO decision? I understand it depends on what else the DRO has going on and how complicated my appeal is, just wanted to see what others' experience has been. Appreciate any feedback.
  9. Hello and good afternoon;I was wondering if anyone else has received this letter regarding the new RAMP program? I spoke to my representative and we are going to Opt-In for my particular appeals situation. We opted for the "higher level" review. Anyone else gotten this letter and Opt-In? Process says 125 days average for a decision. My appeal was submitted back in December 2016 regarding EED's on my awards.We did not opt to have an informal conference either.The letter is worth reading! EDIT: I removed my letter for personal reasons. If you want to know more, message me
  10. In July of '15, I appealed a denial of service connection for a R shoulder condition. I submitted actual copies of a shoulder injury from my Navy medical record, along with evidence of surgeries in 200 and 2015 done by non-VA doctors. At the same time, I filed for an increase in my cervical spine condition. Of course, nothing has happened yet, but it appears that the VA has lumped the two together as one "appeal." I submitted the paperwork under the direction of my NSO. I'm sure this question has been addressed here periodically, but I'd like a fresh opinion: As time goes by, I continue to be treated, tested, injected, etc. for both of these conditions; they are getting worse and worse and the NSO is encouraging me to go for and IU claim, but I still want to try to work. Also recently lost my wife to cancer so i'm the only income anymore. I've been told that submitting additional evidence causes your claim or appeal to go back to the beginning of the process. Is this true? Also, does the VA, when they do get around to looking at my appeal, automatically go through my record and look for information pertaining to my claim? I began using the VA system exclusively last fall, so the new information should be readily at hand. Do I have to go through and pick it out and submit it to them as supporting documentation, or will they find it on their own? If I need to submit, then it goes back to my question above; am I just moving my appeal father away from being considered? Aside from that, I recently got a favorable 10% for tinnitus. I was already at 90% and the new award doesn't push me to 100, but i guess it always helps to document it. Considering a subscription - these ads are a killer and make using the site a lot more confusing to me. Thanks for all the work you do, all of you! Jim
  11. Got a question....I filed five NODs 17 months ago....... eBenefits under Open Appeals for these 17 months just said - Appeal Pending -Notice of Agreement received and dated. Well, sometime over the past week days that changed to Appeal Pending - Statement of the Case (SOC) VA has received your Form 9 and will begin completing final actions regarding your appeal before it is sent to the Board of Veteran's Appeals. I requested a DRO Hearing when I filed NODs. Is this just routine procedure to be sent a Statement of the Case at this stage? I have not received a DRO Hearing date yet?
  12. Hello, I had an earlier BVA decision where I was granted an increase in my rating. In the decision they did not rate my IU because they said I did not perfect the appeal or something like that. I was denied IU by the regional office while by claim was on appeal at the BVA and according to the fast letter if this happens the IU claim is supposed to become part of the pending appeal in DC. Therefore they should have taken in consideration my IU claim as well as my disability claim that they rated even though they didn't have the perfected appeal or the form 9 for IU. So I am thinking of asking for a Motion for Reconsideration for this issue and would like to know if there is a certain format for these types of letters or do I just include the laws that were not followed and the evidence? I tried searching for a letter but was not able to find one. If anyone knows any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance:)
  13. I'm in search of a doctor for sleep study that can write me a IMO and an attorney that represents Veterans in or around the New Orleans area. Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks
  14. Hi everyone! Hope all is well. I just wanted to stop in and say hello. I haven't been on here since late last year. Life is going good. As most know my story and it was a doozy, I finally got everything I deserved! Overall 90% and I couldn't be happier. It took a lot of hard work and sleepless nights and a lot of C&P exams and fighting the VA but I prevailed. I was thankful for this sight b/c without it I would have never met a great guy that helped me with the final phase of my rating. I am now just waiting on an EED for my contentions but I am really not really worried about it and if it happens great and if not, I am good. Don't give up EVER!
  15. I am rated 100% for PTSD will going to groups cause me to lose my rating? I was hospitalized and they encouraged me to go to groups. They encouraged me to go to a rec therapy group and my psychiatrist over the phone encouraged me to attend a nightmare group. This is hard for me to do but seems like a step worth taking. My concern is they will take away my benefits the instant I attend a group. Is it true that you lose your benefits for attending a group?
  16. ALCON: please excuse any unintended etiquette breaking on my post. I stumbled on this forum yesterday while googling about a problem with UPS the VA and medication delivery (different issue, still angry, don't get me started). This forum is massive! I some difficulty navigating it but attempted to read pinned posts and follow rules. BLUF: I incurred an injury during service, I've been fighting to get it added to my claim. I'm currently at 90% and the injury is so significant it will push this to 100% (yes, I've done the VA math on this). What do you do when it keeps coming back "cannot find evidence in medical history of injury incurred during service." It took me 4 years to find the RIGHT diagnosis, it was documented during the medical trauma that I had difficulty with walking, pain in the area where the damage was eventually known to have occurred...2 years of Army docs commenting on my back (clear radiological findings there...no argument about the 8 herniated discs) and ALSO commenting that 'other processes or injury' may have occurred because where some of the dysfunction was, did not match the nerve paths. I have two independent letters from two civilian specialists and my own VA primary care doc (also a Veteran) has written his opinion in the medical chart. I have the correct DBQ filled out from a specialist and the initial letter I got I asked her to write the words "it is more likely than not that this occurred during her medical treatment as it can only occur in traumatic injury GOOD LORD...what do I have to do...print it out, highlight it and walk it down to regional and shove it at them? (not really, I will not do that, this is internet frustration and hyperbole)
  17. I filed a claim for hypertention in april 2015. My claim was denied in Oct.16 stating that it was not sc and no evidence in my medical records. I went through my smr and found over 7 times that my pressure was taking and it read higher than 120 and numerours times in the 140. What should I do now? Any advice is appreciated. Thanks
  18. I am 70% with ptsd and lumbar strain. I have sinced been diagnosed with DMII, Hypertention and sleep apnea with a cpap machine. How or can I SC any of my diagnoses. Any advice is greatly appreciated.
  19. I noticed that the VA didn't award me anything for my anxiety. I was diagnosed with PTSD, depression, anxiety and MDD all at the same time. I looked through my records and see where it's all listed. It has been less than a year since I received my award. Can anyone tell me how to go about getting my anxiety added into my disabilities. Do I file an appeal or..........
  20. I submitted a claim and was frustrated with the results. it was denied. I did not go back and submit an appeal. I know now that I should have. my question: Is there anything I can do? It has been more than a year. Thanks; Dino220
  21. I was hoping that someone can tell me how and where I can read the notes from my C&P or any of my notes from my Dr.'s appointments. Thanks in advance.
  22. SO MY QUESTION IS,, IS ANYONE ELSE OUT THERE WAITING ON THE JUDGMENT OR DECISION FROM A JUDGE THAT HAS ALREADY HEARD YOUR CASE? THE REASON I ASK THIS IS BECAUSE,, MY CASE WAS HEARD IN MAY OF 2015 AND EBENNIES SAID AT THE TIME THAT MY APPEAL WAS WAITING FOR A JUDGE TO HEAR IT. FAST FORWARD ALMOST 2 YEARS AND EBENFITS STILL SAYS MY CASE IS WAITING FOR SCHEDULING TO BE HEARD. WHEN I CALL BVA THEY TELL ME THAT MY CASE HAS NOT GONE TO THE JUDGE YET FOR A DECISION... EBENES HAS ME STILL STUCK AT SCHEDULING FOR HEARING DATE. WHAT SHOULD IT SAY ON EBENNIES IF IVE ALREADY HAD MY CASE HEARD AND IM WAITING ON A DECISION?
  23. Here's an interesting FYI for all of you to be aware of: https://asknod.org/2016/12/07/vas-subtle-delay-and-deny-tactics-boldly-going-nowhere/
  24. Sorry if this question/answer is already posted, but I couldn't find it. I have just received 10/05/26 another DRO De Novo denial for increase in PTSD [currently 50% PTSD 10% other] and approval for TDIU. This has been going on for a decade and the local DRO has blatantly ignored 12 years of therapy and VA psych assessments which counter the one C&P doctor's 40min assessment. But my question is; I have been in contact with a lawyer to represent this appeal to BVA. I'm a Vietnam Vet and at 69 I will be 74 by the time the 5 year BVA backlog gets to it. So I need to do this right. I have recently been informed that Hypertension, which I have has since Vietnam can be secondary to PTSD. I also have heart arrhythmia which I read can also be aggravated by hypertension. I've had 4 TIAs since 2007 and my external cardiologist - who has done extensive work on me for over 5 years - I believe will attest to hypertension secondary to PTSD. And maybe other heart diseases. Finally, my questions is should I continue to file the BVA appeal addressing the 10/05/2016 denial issues? Or, should I not file the appeal and submit my hypertension and heart issues as new claims? The most significant problem I see is that if I don't file the BVA appeal claim now, and wait for the DRO decision on the new issues I might be dead, or clearly out of time to file the BVA appeal. Semper Fi! Art
  25. So on Monday I had my C&P exams for my feet/ankles/toe and scars. I think it went rather well and the doctor was thorough. These C&P exams were ordered on September 8th, 2016 by the DRO in WACO after she over turned the other DRO's decision. She ordered the C&P exams so I could get a proper rating on my contentions. She over turned the DRO's decision due to his egregious errors in my decision that I brought to the attention of Mr. Robert McDonald's office and my local Congressman. After getting the representative from McDonald's office to contact me and then to get the WACO office to contact me, I sit here today awaiting the decision I should have had years ago. I am grateful the new DRO reviewed the decision that the previous DRO made and over turned it. The DRO that made the egregious errors in my decision has apparently done this to other Veterans. I hope they investigate this DRO. I am thankful I did not have to go another 2-4 years to the BVA to appeal a decision due to the egregious errors by one DRO. I am grateful the new DRO assigned saw the egregious error and reversed the decision at the RO level. I did talk to the DRO on Wednesday and she said she received the scar C&P exam but not yet received the Foot/Ankle/Toe C&P exam. She said it shouldn't be too long and then she can rate me. I am so anxious right now!
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