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Found 15 results

  1. Good day to all. A little background before I get to my questions... I am a 70% disabled veteran and was recently let go from my job as a service technician. Admittedly, the job was hard on me because of my main disability (back condition). The owner of the company gave me a letter that stated I was "laid off" on a permanent basis. Essentially, I was fired. I was "laid off" the day after I came back from a week off for recuperating after aggravating my back condition on the job. I did have a doctor's note and the owner was already aware that I was a disabled vet. During my meeting with the owner I told him that I knew he was letting me go because of my disability issues. He said nothing. I have a good rapport with the office manager. She said she would add something to my "layoff" letter or possibly write a letter for me that I can have for VA purposes. Now, on to my questions: I'm unsure as to how I should phrase the letter. Should I just have the office manager put a sentence in my original layoff letter that states "Unfortunately, due to the nature of this position, no reasonable accommodations can be made" or "Unfortunately, due to the nature of this position and your physical limitations, no reasonable accommodations can be made?" Or should I ask if she would type an entirely new letter for me? If so, what should I have her write? Would this letter hold any weight on my behalf when I go for a re-eval? This leads up to my second question. The 20-year anniversary is coming up on my rating. Which means, if I'm not mistaken, that the VA cannot decrease my rating unless they can prove fraud. Is that correct? I'm waiting for that anniversary because frankly, I do not trust the VA. If I go before that time there's always that small chance that they could find a way to decrease my rating. And I just cannot risk that. If my rating falls below 50% not only would I lose 20% of my VA income, but also my retirement concurrent receipt. That would be a devastating blow, and that's the main reason I'm waiting for the 20-year mark. Should I have an organization like the American Legion or DAV work on my behalf? Or should I look at getting a disability attorney? Not sure which is better. I do know that a caring and knowledgeable representative is hard to find. I do see VA disability attorneys often on YouTube but I'm not sure which one to go with. Any suggestions would be very helpful. Thank you for taking the time to read my post. All replies are very much appreciated!
  2. This post is about seeking the best advice for my next step(s). I'll try to be as succinct as possible, however, we are talking about the VA compensation process. I received a BVA decision in December 2018, most appeals were denied, however, the important one’s, back increase (40%) and SC for migraine headaches, although zero percent, were granted and the BVA judge also stated: TDIU: VA treatment records have raised the issue of TDIU as part and parcel of the claims for increased rating; the Veteran has submitted several records indicating findings by VA that he is not employable at present due to his service-connected disabilities. This claim has not yet been adjudicated, and further, in light of grants of service connection and increased rating herein, required additional development. I currently have a total rating of 60% and the VARO TDIU decision states: Entitlement to individual unemployability is denied because you have not been found unable to secure or follow a substantially gainful occupation as a result of service-connected disabilities. This case has not been submitted for extra-schedular consideration because the evidence fails to show you are unemployable due to service connected disabilities. (38 CFR 4.16). I received a fully favorable decision for SSDI by the Social Security Administration and VA Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Services States: After carefully reviewing the evidence, I have determined that it is not reasonable to expect you to be able to train for or get a suitable job at this time. I had a VA/social security attorney, whom I felt was not meeting my needs as there was very limited communication on their part, I’d filed a complaint with them letting them know, I didn’t need hand holding, however I do expect my representative to take action on the BVA decision, appeals, CUE, etc. It seemed like they weren’t interested in working on my behalf, and I kind of felt like they were just waiting for a positive VA decision so they could get paid. I am completely aware VA things take time, and I’ve been battling the VA for three decades now. Anyway, I decided to contact CC&K and they informed me they aren’t interested in taking my case. I’ve already filed a NOD and I have no idea what’s going on with the VARO remand response to the BVA. I’m almost sure, I can win an increase for my migraine headaches rating and entitlement to TDIU via pro se representation. However, I would love to have some assistance and not sure if I should keep contacting attorney’s, VSO, forum buddy, or go on my own. I’ve only had one attorney in all the years I’ve been pursuing my VA compensation rights, my previous VA claims were won on my own, and I’m almost positive both my SSDI and BVA claims were granted without any assistance from the attorney. They got their VA 20% and SSA $6,000, so I figure were good and it was time to terminate our agreement and move on. Thanks in advance…
  3. I'm attaching the filings and responses to the U S District Court for the Wyoming District regarding my medical negligence claim against the Navy and VA. I apparently erred in submitting a motion to toll the statute of limitations with the filing of the claim in December. All suggestions will be appreciated. 20171215 Court complaint.pdf 20171215 Court complaint tolling.pdf 20171229 US Atty re toll SOL.pdf 20180103 Rebuttal obj eq tolling.pdf 20180109 DCDW denial Motion Eq Toll.pdf
  4. I have four appeals at the BVA level that were certified by my RO and none of the appeals have docket numbers yet. I understand about waiver of initial consideration for additional evidence. My questions are these: 1. How do I know what evidence the BVA currently has? Could be that lots of evidence I have is not at the BVA level and want to ensure they have EVERYTHING. 2. Will a waiver of initial consideration automatically apply to all evidence, past, present, and future? That is, does a waiver of initial consideration, prevent any of my appeals from being sent back to the RO, assuming the BVA has all they evidence for my claims/appeals. I'm done dealing with the RO and want to avoid any remands as my claim challenges have been ongoing for 29 years now! Thank you very much in advance... James
  5. Looking for recommendation for an attorney for a TBI claim that is well documented with an neuro psych exam. I am service connected back to 2008 but I believe I was low balled at 40% for TBI. Generally describing the results, the Exam notes severe and moderate in the results for memory and other cognitive and executive function. I asked for a reconsideration based on the difference in the test results and the VA schedule criteria on my own but got denied and gave up. I should have kept at it but I think getting an attorney is the only way I am going to make any progress. So here I am doing what I should have done a few years ago. Does anyone have a recommendation for an attorney that handles TBI CUE? I found some TBI articles posted by Hill & Ponton out of Florida. So many out there. Thanks
  6. I need an FTCA attorney. I have a Wyoming attorney willing to stand in as the Wyoming attorney for filing in the U S District Court for the Wyoming District. Is any available frequenting this site or can I get a referral from someone. The case involves prescribing a medication, Tegretol, for "atonic seizures" that was contra indicated, made my condition worse and then the West Los Angeles VA RMC Seizure Clinic refused to change medications. When It made me so bad, after 5 months, that I weaned myself off an quit the drug they still wouldn't provide a different drug and instead diagnosed me with "pseudo seizures" which cannot be done if there is a record of epileptiform spiking in an EEG as is the case. From the Physicians' Desk Reference: " From the current online PDR, “Carbamazepine is not recommended for use in petit mal…” (absence) “… seizures, atonic seizures, or myoclonic seizures because it can exacerbate these conditions. If a worsening of seizures occurs when therapy is initiated, this possibility should be considered.” (copywrite by PDR, LLC, 2017) This is exactly what happened to me and when I complained in the last of 1990 into 1991 the Seizure Clinic refused to change therapy. Tegretol was approved in 1968. It had 22 years of service before it was prescribed to me on a diagnosis of "Atonic seizures." I'm not sure the warning in the current PDR was in the 1990 PDR but assume it was because of the years of service. I lost approximately 32 years of optimum employability and employability. My finale full time employment was in 1985 with a 2 year break to a part time job, that ended in 1990, which was essentially a charity job working for a business manager of a well know actor in Los Angeles. The seizures are the result of an anterior temporal lobe injury in 1969 and went undiagnosed until 1985 and then untreated until confirmed in 1990. Following the diagnosis of "pseudo seizures," I was untreated for seizures until August of 2015 with a drug I could tolerate. No drug was tried until a private NB Ward physician tried Lamotrigine in April of 2014. The immediate effect was great but in three days I developed Steven's Johnson's syndrome. Keppra wasn't tried until August of 2015 here in Wyoming, and has been working very well. I'm currently service connected for a TBI at 40% with a combined rating of 70% and granted TDIU from 2009 per a BVA Decision on May 11, 2017. There is a remand in the decision that may take the TDIU back to either the claim in 1987 or the end of the part time employment if it is judged as "substantially gainful employment." The pay was and there is a statement of the now deceased employer in the record stating that I was paid 4 days for 3 days work which I wasn't able to full fill and part of the work had to be shifted to another employee.
  7. 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
  8. 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
  9. Well I received my SOC today on 11 different Pending Disabilities. Of course they were all denied even with three DBQ's and NEXUS letter from my physician. I have a call into Jamie Olivares a NOVA Attorney in Olympia, WA. Just wondering if anyone has ever worked with her, the law offices of Elie Halpern & Associates PLLC, or if anyone has a great recommendation for a VA Attorney. Thanks... James
  10. I received a letter dated February 19, 2016 informing me that my NOD had been received. Included with the letter was a generic “Appeal Process Election” form which they want me to fill out and return within 60 days. This seems odd since the new NOD VA FORM 21-0958, which I used, asks that very same question in Part III Sec. 9 entitled: “Appeal Process Election.” My election of Traditional Appellate Review Process was clearly marked. Also, there is a third option on this attached “Appeal Process Election” form which does not appear on the VA FORM 21-0958: “[] I have reconsidered and wish to withdraw my appeal.” This just seems like another crude attempt at getting veterans to abandon their appeals. The letter also included this statement verbatim: “An agent or attorney may also represent you. However, an agent or attorney can charge you only for service performed on or after the date of a final decision by the Board of Veterans’ Appeals.” It has been my understanding that since June 20, 2007, a veteran can be represented by a paid attorney anytime after filing a NOD an initial RO denial. Has my RO gone completely off the rails or is this the way it is done now?
  11. So there is this: https://www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefits/vso-search Which turns up quite a few attorney results in the Austin, TX area. I'm in Round Rock; does anyone in Central Texas have experience with any lawyer for VA claims they can share? Background: I filed a claim for the Desert Storm illnesses the day after Congress made them presumptives (Thank you IOM!!). VA granted me the typical low-ball percentages, I did a NOD that got nowhere in 2014. Now I have a year (right?) I lost the 30-day window because I was dumb enough to believe my VSO rep who was retiring and didn't care much (full disclosure: he is said to have been very good in his prime, but I guess after so many years....) Current ratings: - PTSD 50% - IBS 30% (max allowed) - Fibromyalgia: 20% - Chronic Fatigue: 10% - Allergic Rhinitis: 10% - some 0% What I honestly believe I should have: - PTSD 70% - IBS 30% - Fibromyalgia: 40% - Chronic Fatigue: 60% - Allergic Rhinitis: 10% - random 0%
  12. After waiting a year for my C&P exam the examiner refused to address any of my issues she considered "secondary" to my primary injuries even though I had supporting Doctor's reports; MRI's; X-Ray's and other supporting documents. The rating letter arrived today and the rating was not changed, so no surprise there. I need to file a NOD and would like to get an IME done as well. Are there any peer recommendations in Texas, particularly the San Antonio area for an Attorney to consult with on the NOD and a Physician to do the IME? I have the information on the Attig Law Firm, Dr. Anaise and Dr. Bash from prior posts and can go that diretion if there is no local San Antonio or Texas recommendation(s).
  13. My claimed was shut down and closed July 4, 2014, but haven't received my BBE yet which should come any day. I'm tired of dealing with VSO's who has no Idea of whats going on beside lunch. Anyone heard of a good attorney in Memphis, Jackson TNor w Memphis AR.
  14. I currently have 20% rating. I first received 10% in 2005 when I got out of active duty then in about 2010 after reopening claim it went to 20%. At that time I didn't understand how the process went. This time around I was considering getting a lawyer through allsup.com or fight4vets.com. I wanted know others experience. I was told it helps the process and time frame. What do you guys think?
  15. I am looking to get some counsel from an attorney that knows the ropes within the VA system. Is it important that an attorney for this be located in the state that you reside in? The VA is of course Federal so maybe being local is not that important unless you want to meet in person. I live in Nevada and there seem to be very few that are accredited by the VA around Reno. Also anyone know any attorneys to recommend that are knowlegeable about the VA (possibly one that previously worked at a VA Regional Office)? Some attorneys do work for Veterans but sometimes more as a sideline and I want someone that specializes in Veterans issues. I have seen some Excel lists of VA accredited attorneys but picking one is like opening the phone book closing your eyes and hoping for the best which I'd rather not do. Thanks
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