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Dro Review Process Help?


sunfish34
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Question

I filed a NOD for my dh sc back injury Jan 8th 09, we recieved a letter today asking if he wants

to do a DRO review, is that the best way to go, and when we send in the reply do we send

in any new evidence? He also has two other claims in process, I have a feeling this is going

to take some more time and work, So far he is rated 10% for knee injury.Thank you

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And how long does this take? We are moving out of state in June, I know that it will be

a hassel to move his claim to where we are going? What or how do we do that, just let

the va know we are moving?

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I'm in NY outta the Buffalo VARO and I waited 9 months for my DRO hearing only to have it cancelled 2 days before (with no notice to me by my servicerep). It took 2 more months to get the hearing. I am now waiting for the "hearing tape to be transcribed" so the DRO can actually open my file for the first time and begin her review. VA has taken almost 2 months so far to transcribe the 20-25 minute tape.... and as of a week ago they still had not done that. I figure it will be 6 more months total which means 1 1/2 years for this DRO appeals process.

Just my experience so far.

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I'm in NY outta the Buffalo VARO and I waited 9 months for my DRO hearing only to have it cancelled 2 days before (with no notice to me by my servicerep). It took 2 more months to get the hearing. I am now waiting for the "hearing tape to be transcribed" so the DRO can actually open my file for the first time and begin her review. VA has taken almost 2 months so far to transcribe the 20-25 minute tape.... and as of a week ago they still had not done that. I figure it will be 6 more months total which means 1 1/2 years for this DRO appeals process.

Just my experience so far.

Definitely request an in-person DRO hearing. Don't just let the DRO make the decision through looking at the records. I did that before I found Hadit and I am now in appeals, because DRO looked at what Rater said and agreed when there were blatant errors in raters assessment. In person allows you to present evidence and make your case. I wouldn't submit anything else. Just wait for the hearing unless it is a slam dunk piece of new evidence. I look at it like if you are in a lawsuit and going to court with someone. Would you want them to see the evidence you have against them months in advance, so that they can make a case against you??? I think not. The DRO will take your evidence and weigh it against the VA regs. You won't get an immediate approval or disapproval. It will come later (I think within 60 days). On your move, again I moved from TX to FL last year and had my stuff transferred. I have had to send copies of everything in to FL because they don't have half of what I presented to the Houston, TX region. If you are not moving far away and it wouldn't be difficult to return for a couple of possible exams, I wouldn't tell them about moving. Have your mail forwarded. Then again, if you are in a lousy region and the one you are moving to has a better record as far as deciding claims faster, you may want to change regions. BUT DO ONE THING I DIDN'T DO.......GET YOUR C-FILE before you leave. That way you can deliver it your self to the new region. Let us know what region you are in and which you will be moving to. Hadit members will give you their opinion on what region is better to work with. Good luck!!

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Mags, I agree with you on all counts but I will say that during my hearing the DRO asked no questions and spoke only to tell me that this or that would not be addressed (possible CUE and earlier effective date) as the appeal didn't mention those. I said that it doesn't matter as the regs back me up and they have to follow the regs... she just sat there. My service rep (whom I met 15 minutes earlier as my rep was 60 miles away in my home city) said nothing more than a bunch of formalities and niceities. The DRO also tried to convince me pre-hearing to have an "unofficial" hearing, meaning there would be no recording or transcript of the meeting. I declined immediately and said that I wanted everything taped.

As with everything VA it seems like a luck of the draw...........

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