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Cue Regs In Action


Berta

Question

http://www.va.gov/vetapp07/files1/0706616.txt

"The crux of this case is that the claim was denied in June

1987 because according to the RO the veteran did not indicate

any "specific" stressors, and accordingly "specific"

stressors could not be verified. The RO acknowledged receipt

of the April 1987 letter from the US Army and Joint Services

Environmental Group, which informed the RO that the veteran

had been awarded the Army Commendation Medal for his actions

in Nicaragua after the December 1972 Managua Earthquake. The

attached citation noted that the Managua Earthquake had

resulted in "massive numbers of casualties"; that "[o]nce

arrived at the site, [the veteran's] help in establishing the

hospital insured its quick response to the medical needs of

the earthquake victims of Managua."

"The Board concludes that the RO's finding that the veteran

had not described "any specific stress related to your

experience in Nicaragua" is undebatably erroneous. The

veteran's January 1987 stressor statement graphically

described his stressor.

If the RO in fact required a specific incident, such was

inappropriate in light of evidence that the entire city was

virtually destroyed; tens of thousands of people were killed

or injured; and the veteran was undeniably involved in

setting up an emergency hospital to treat the victims."

"The Board finds as an initial matter that CUE has been pled

with specificity.

See Andre, supra."

"As explained in the law and regulations section above, CUE

involves more than mere misinterpretation of facts by an

adjudicator. Rather, the law must be misapplied to correct

and relevant facts; further, such error must be undebatable

and manifestly change the outcome of the issue."

The denial of this claim was misapplication of law in light of the overwhelming evidence and facts known to VA at time the CUE occurred.

This is a little different than most CUE claims but might help someone here.

"In a June 1987 rating decision, the RO stated that its

previous denial was being confirmed and continued because the

veteran "has not indicated any specific stressor related to

his experiences in Nicaragua." The veteran was informed of

that decision via a letter from the RO in July 1987. The

veteran did not appeal."

That is where the CUE occurred.

The Board noted:

"In an April 1987 letter (which was evidently not associated

with the veteran's claims folder until after the May 1987

rating decision), the US Army and Joint Services

Environmental Group informed the RO that the veteran had been

awarded the Army Commendation Medal for his actions in

Nicaragua after the December 1972 Managua Earthquake.

Attached was a copy of the Army Commendation meal and a copy

of the citation. The citation, in essence, noted that the

Managua Earthquake had resulted in "massive numbers of

casualties"; that "[o]nce arrived at the site, [the

veteran's] help in establishing the hospital insured its

quick response to the medical needs of the earthquake victims

of Managua."

and added:

[The Board takes judicial notice that approximately 4,000 to

6,000 people were estimated to have been killed in the

earthquake; 20,000 injured; and 250,000 were rendered

homeless.]"

This is a very detailed decision and I never saw a CUE like this-

The CUE produced 13 years of retro PTSD SC for this veteran.

"ORDER

The June 1987 decision denying the veteran's claim of

entitlement to service connection for PTSD was the product of

CUE. An effective date of June 11, 1986 is assigned for

service connection for PTSD. The appeal is allowed to that

extent." BVA March 2007

The veteran subsequently re-open his claim for PTSD in Dec 1999 which was granted with an EED to Dec 1999.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

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"The Board finds as an initial matter that CUE has been pled with specificity. See Andre, supra."

Whomever made that initial RO decision really had head up azz.

The BVA came through.

Good on this vet and his representation!

Good on the vet!

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