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    When a Veteran starts considering whether or not to file a VA Disability Claim, there are a lot of questions that he or she tends to ask. Over the last 10 years, the following are the 14 most common basic questions I am asked about ...
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  • Can a 100 percent Disabled Veteran Work and Earn an Income?

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    You’ve just been rated 100% disabled by the Veterans Affairs. After the excitement of finally having the rating you deserve wears off, you start asking questions. One of the first questions that you might ask is this: It’s a legitimate question – rare is the Veteran that finds themselves sitting on the couch eating bon-bons … Continue reading

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      I was involved in traumatic incident on base in 1974 and have had nightmares ever since, but I did not go to mental health while enlisted. How can I get help?



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Guest Berta

Why I Say- Continue To Fight Them At The Varo Level

Question

Guest Berta

(This is only a few positiona and their salaries-

Also-if anyone is interested the 2006 VA Budget is found at :

http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/budget/fy2006/appendix.html

Just click on the Department of Veterans Affairs.

These federal employees are paid good money to do a job properly.

I feel that the VARos- since they have the same legal and medical criteria as BVA and CAVC -should be pressured into doing their jobs right for you all.

The reason for the backlog is due in part -in my opinion- to the fact that they continually have to re-do decisions which could have been properly prepared in the first place.

I know Terry disagrees-and that is OK-

But when you consider these VARO salaries and then add what BVA and CAVC employees get paid-

a valid claim for compensation can be as costly to the federal goverment as it can be to the vet-as the vet waits year after year incurring higher taxes and interest on loans they need to get etc- and when they do finally receive an award it is usually based on money that does not have the same value when they get it-

as it did when they first filed the claim.

Like I always say- it the VA was a business- they would be bankrupt by now.

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12/28/2005 Supervisory Veterans Service Representative (Assistant Veterans Service Center Manager)

The Assistant Veterans Service Center Manager shares responsibility with the Veterans Service Center Manager for directing and supervising the administration of work involving the development, ...[more]

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Opening Date: 12/8/2005

Salary: From 88,772.00 to 115,407.00 USD per year

Veterans Affairs, Veterans Benefits Administration US-CA-Sacramento County 88,772.00+

12/30/2005 Veterans Service Center Manager

This announcement is open to VA Career Transition Assistance Program eligibles only. ...[more]

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1/3/2006 Rating Veterans Service Representative

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Guest fla_viking

Dear Berta.

I belive all the mistakes, loosing destroying records, playing mind games with vets is the job the ajudicators are told to do. Secretely these guys who deny our claims are promoted and have good lives. while the vets loose homes familys and there minds.

Every vet must assess to themselfs if the RO is delibert in acting in bad faith claims processing. As time goes on the RO will prove me right over and over again. It will all depend on how much paiin you want to go through before you cut off there acess to you.

Terry Higgins

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I think you are 100% correct in your assesment that things need to change at the VARO. I think the VARO level is THE bottleneck of the system. But, I also think it is well known and recognised by the powers to be, and not being fixed for a reason. It is well known that the AG(whoever has proper jurisdiction) has been contacted and asked to intervene numeruos times over persistant law violations at the VARO level. It never happens. I know for a fact, Senator Craig has been shown several claims from different individuals full of Law violations commited by the VARO, and these are ignored. 83% of CAVC cases are remanded.

The VARO is akin to a group of unruly children that will not behave at school. Their 'parents' have been notified many times to bring their children in line with the rules of the school. The 'parents' have failed to do so. So, we must force the 'parents' to do THEIR jobs, or lose the right to be parents.

I hope that makes as much sence up on the screen as it does in my head. B) But, I'm not sure how to do it, except to make the public aware, as our representatives seem only to respond to pressure.

We all have to fight at the VARO to keep our claim alive, but in doing so, many without the expertise found at hadit or a very good, rare SO, will legally ruin their claim in the process. Thus, no chance of winning past this level. VARO mistakes are easily forgiven and eventually recognised, but veteran mistakes are most often permanent. Hmmm, I wonder why the VARO never gets fixed, and the numbers suggest something way more sinister than human error, by a WELL paid employee wanting to keep a job? NOBODY I've ever worked for would tolorate that amount of error in a part time $10k a year position. 83% remanded. Is this error?

Time

Berta,

I need to say my thoughts are in addition to yours and not opposed. You are correct to pursue the issue as you are and we all should follow suit.

Edited by timetowinarace

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Every time the VARO screws up a claim and denies the government saves money. Since there is no interest paid on backpay why should not the VA delay and deny claims as long as possible? No one in government really wants the VARO to improve or it would.

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Guest Berta

One more point I need to make-

I am preparing a Response to the SSOC I got-

it is a piece of cake-

but my point is- if a veteran fails to respond to an SOC or SSOC and of course gets on the BVA docket- in essenese their failure to respond with something back to the VARO means- in my opinion- they are buying what the VA is selling-

Many SOCs and SSOCs are so full of erroneous information and misassessments that - if the claim goes to the BVA without any response from the veteran-

the BVA reads what the VA said -with no rebuttal from the claimant- unless they detail the 1-9.

Unfortunately 1-9s should be the rebuttal to the SOC to have value-

By the time a valid claim possibly gets remanded back to the VARO-

as it sits in Limbo land- many vets have failed to even send in more evidence in support of their claim.

It is astonshing to read BVA decisions- that are denials because the vet did nor adequately attempt to rebutt the VARO decision.

For example- let's say the BVA states that the veterans SMR's are silent for hypertension.

In all that time if the vet didnt look at the actual SMRs themselves- they would not known if this is incorrect.

Or let's say the BVA echoes a VARO statement that the veteran has received no treatment for his claimed disability, therefore there is no proof he has a current disability.Say the vet has had ample documentation from a private source or even VA itself in treatment records yet thought the VA would access all this stuff and they didnt.

Say in all that time the vet has gained SSA award for same condition, and has the nexus established- yet the VARO and now the BVA are unaware of these probative SSA records.

The SO never asks the vet if he gets SSA and the vet- lets face it -they dont tell us anything- did not realise this was medical evidence to support his claim-

I say fight them to the hilt-

draw them out in SSOC responses- they will 'more then likely' put their foot in their mouth (I have received some beauties)or finally award when they see your evidence is solid and you just refuse to go away.

Edited by Berta

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Guest Berta

Terry- I have great respect for your opinions-

as you know- and great affection for you-

My advise on responding to SOCs is only my personal advise-

Another problem Terry- whether the claim is at the VARO level or the BVA_ is that VA doctors often render opinions in SOCs that are parsed and often not what their actual report revealed.

Also I have knocked down 3 or 4 so called VA expert doctors already-

but only because the VA itself has forced me to gain some medical knowledge and I can immediately recognise deficient medical statements (often based on limited reports in med recs) in certain

types of disability claims.

This is wrong that any claimant should even have to do this-

we cannot depend that a VA "expert" doctor is in fact expert enough to

opine- and most often they are not only under pressure to go against the claim (as a VA doctor revealed to me)

and not given the very evidence they need-

as in my case with the Med team at VACO.

If these deficient medical opinions that go against the claim are not thoroughly questioned by the veteran in an SOC response or combatted with an IMO-

it doesn't matter whether the claim is better off at the BVA or not-

Sure I have read many successful awards at the BVA- they know how to read in Washington-

but a deficient opinion from some VA quack stands as it is throughout the claims process unless the vet takes steps to challenge it.

These VA "expert" opinions are not the Holy Grail and can most often be successfully challenged.

If a vet cannot afford a good IMO we all know nursing school or medical students-even a good English Major can help see the gaps in a VA opinion-by the way it is written-

I am sorry that vets get the burden of challenging SOCs this way.

If they have probative evidence, the nexus or presumptive situation, and a full belief that they will succeed-they will----

but it takes work-

I have an email vet who still has failed to get his SMRs as he believes the VA would not lie as to what they say his SMRs reveal-

Another email widow -sent to me by one of my vet orgs-

who told them the VA caused her husband to bleed to death-

and she can prove it- still fails to obtain the veteran's death certificate and autopsy results------the Death cert is necessary for the 21-526 application for DIC-

I have dealt with numerous claimants locally over the years who could do so much to support their claims yet fail to-

the new movie "Munich"---

Well I have a local vet who gets SSA for PTSD due to his experience at Munich while in the military during this event.

The VA denied a leg-back claim he had years ago and he refuses to consider filing for TDIU for PTSD. The denial made him feel like VA was calling him a liar when he filed the claim.

Here is a vet with overwhelming proof of inservice event, PTSD diagnosis and treatment, and SSA award-who the VA itself-by their past decision on a different disability- has

caused him not to file a new claim.

I regret men and women -that we all have to be very proactive with our claims-I know how difficult that can be-

some claims fly right throught the system and get awards-

but many dont.

If you do take the BVA route- I do suggest that as you wait out the years it will probably take to get a BVA decision-

do not delude yourself that it will be a favorable one -it will be still be based on assessing the same evidence that prompted the VAROs denial.

continue to collect and send to the VA any evidence you can to support your claim-whether at the BVA or not-

Terry- I have great respect for your opinions-

as you know- and great affection for you-

My advise on responding to SOCs is only my personal advise-

Another problem Terry- whether the claim is at the VARO level or the BVA_ is that VA doctors often render opinions in SOCs that are parsed and often not what their actual report revealed.

Also I have knocked down 3 or 4 so called VA expert doctors already-

but only because the VA itself has forced me to gain some medical knowledge and I can immediately recognise deficient medical statements (often based on limited reports in med recs) in certain

types of disability claims.

This is wrong that any claimant should even have to do this-

we cannot depend that a VA "expert" doctor is in fact expert enough to

opine- and most often they are not only under pressure to go against the claim (as a VA doctor revealed to me)

and not given the very evidence they need-

as in my case with the Med team at VACO.

If these deficient medical opinions that go against the claim are not thoroughly questioned by the veteran in an SOC response or combatted with an IMO-

it doesn't matter whether the claim is better off at the BVA or not-

Sure I have read many successful awards at the BVA- they know how to read in Washington-

but a deficient opinion from some VA quack stands as it is throughout the claims process unless the vet takes steps to challenge it.

These VA "expert" opinions are not the Holy Grail and can most often be successfully challenged.

If a vet cannot afford a good IMO we all know nursing school or medical students-even a good English Major can help see the gaps in a VA opinion-by the way it is written-

I am sorry that vets get the burden of challenging SOCs this way.

If they have probative evidence, the nexus or presumptive situation, and a full belief that they will succeed-they will----

but it takes work-

I have an email vet who still has failed to get his SMRs as he believes the VA would not lie as to what they say his SMRs reveal-

Another email widow -sent to me by one of my vet orgs-

who told them the VA caused her husband to bleed to death-

and she can prove it- still fails to obtain the veteran's death certificate and autopsy results------the Death cert is necessary for the 21-526 application for DIC-

I have dealt with numerous claimants locally over the years who could do so much to support their claims yet fail to-

the new movie "Munich"---

Well I have a local vet who gets SSA for PTSD due to his experience at Munich while in the military during this event.

The VA denied a leg-back claim he had years ago and he refuses to consider filing for TDIU for PTSD. The denial made him feel like VA was calling him a liar when he filed the claim.

Here is a vet with overwhelming proof of inservice event, PTSD diagnosis and treatment, and SSA award-who the VA itself-by their past decision on a different disability- has

caused him not to file a new claim.

I regret men and women -that we all have to be very proactive with our claims-I know how difficult that can be-

some claims fly right throught the system and get awards-

but many dont.

If you do take the BVA route- I do suggest that as you wait out the years it will probably take to get a BVA decision-

do not delude yourself that it will be a favorable one -it will be still be based on assessing the same evidence that prompted the VAROs denial.

continue to collect and send to the VA any evidence you can to support your claim-whether at the BVA or not-

Terry- I have great respect for your opinions-

as you know- and great affection for you-

My advise on responding to SOCs is only my personal advise-

Another problem Terry- whether the claim is at the VARO level or the BVA_ is that VA doctors often render opinions in SOCs that are parsed and often not what their actual report revealed.

Also I have knocked down 3 or 4 so called VA expert doctors already-

but only because the VA itself has forced me to gain some medical knowledge and I can immediately recognise deficient medical statements (often based on limited reports in med recs) in certain

types of disability claims.

This is wrong that any claimant should even have to do this-

we cannot depend that a VA "expert" doctor is in fact expert enough to

opine- and most often they are not only under pressure to go against the claim (as a VA doctor revealed to me)

and not given the very evidence they need-

as in my case with the Med team at VACO.

If these deficient medical opinions that go against the claim are not thoroughly questioned by the veteran in an SOC response or combatted with an IMO-

it doesn't matter whether the claim is better off at the BVA or not-

Sure I have read many successful awards at the BVA- they know how to read in Washington-

but a deficient opinion from some VA quack stands as it is throughout the claims process unless the vet takes steps to challenge it.

These VA "expert" opinions are not the Holy Grail and can most often be successfully challenged.

If a vet cannot afford a good IMO we all know nursing school or medical students-even a good English Major can help see the gaps in a VA opinion-by the way it is written-

I am sorry that vets get the burden of challenging SOCs this way.

If they have probative evidence, the nexus or presumptive situation, and a full belief that they will succeed-they will----

but it takes work-

I have an email vet who still has failed to get his SMRs as he believes the VA would not lie as to what they say his SMRs reveal-

Another email widow -sent to me by one of my vet orgs-

who told them the VA caused her husband to bleed to death-

and she can prove it- still fails to obtain the veteran's death certificate and autopsy results------the Death cert is necessary for the 21-526 application for DIC-

I have dealt with numerous claimants locally over the years who could do so much to support their claims yet fail to-

the new movie "Munich"---

Well I have a local vet who gets SSA for PTSD due to his experience at Munich while in the military during this event.

The VA denied a leg-back claim he had years ago and he refuses to consider filing for TDIU for PTSD. The denial made him feel like VA was calling him a liar when he filed the claim.

Here is a vet with overwhelming proof of inservice event, PTSD diagnosis and treatment, and SSA award-who the VA itself-by their past decision on a different disability- has

caused him not to file a new claim.

I regret men and women -that we all have to be very proactive with our claims-I know how difficult that can be-

some claims fly right throught the system and get awards-

but many dont.

If you do take the BVA route- I do suggest that as you wait out the years it will probably take to get a BVA decision-

do not delude yourself that it will be a favorable one -it will be still be based on assessing the same evidence that prompted the VAROs denial.

continue to collect and send to the VA any evidence you can to support your claim-whether at the BVA or not-

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    • How to get your questions answered...


      All VA Claims questions should be posted on our forums. Read the forums without registering, to post you must register it’s free. Register for a free account.

      Tips on posting on the forums.

      Post a clear title like ‘Need help preparing PTSD claim’ or “VA med center won’t schedule my surgery” instead of ‘I have a question’.


      Knowledgable people who don’t have time to read all posts may skip yours if your need isn’t clear in the title. I don’t read all posts every login and will gravitate towards those I have more info on.


      Use paragraphs instead of one huge, rambling introduction or story. Again – You want to make it easy for others to help. If your question is buried in a monster paragraph there are fewer who will investigate to dig it out.


      Leading to:

      Post clear questions and then give background info on them.

      Examples:

      A. I was previously denied for apnea – Should I refile a claim?


      I was diagnosed with apnea in service and received a CPAP machine but claim was denied in 2008. Should I refile?



      B. I may have PTSD- how can I be sure?

      I was involved in traumatic incident on base in 1974 and have had nightmares ever since, but I did not go to mental health while enlisted. How can I get help?



      This gives members a starting point to ask clarifying questions like “Can you post the Reasons for Denial from your claim?” etc.

      Note:

      Your firsts posts on the board may be delayed before they show up, as they are reviewed, this process does not take long and the review requirement will be removed usually by the 6th post, though we reserve the right to keep anyone on moderator preview.

      This process allows us to remove spam and other junk posts before they hit the board. We want to keep the focus on VA Claims and this helps us do that.
      • 0 replies
    • Exams that were being sent strictly to contractors before, due to VAMCs not being open, are starting to be routed back to VAMCs. This is going forward from last Friday- not sure if prior scheduled exams will be re-created for VAMC vs vendor.
      • 7 replies
    • Mere speculation in your VA C and P exam

      M21-1, Part III, Subpart iv, Chapter 3, Section D – Examination Reports III.iv.3.D.2.r. Examiner Statements that an Opinion Would be Speculative Pay careful attention to any conclusion by the examiner that an opinion could not be provided without resorting to mere speculation (or any similar language to that effect). VA may only accept a medical examiner’s … Continue reading
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    • It's time to ask for help from the community. If you can help with a gift it would be very appreciated.

      Fund HadIt.com Veteran to Veteran LLC


      Give a financial gift to help with the upkeep of HadIt.com. HadIt.com is NOT a non profit. Gifts are not tax deductible, they are just gifts. 
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