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.
Knowledgeable 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 massive, 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.
Post straightforward questions and then post background information.
Question A. I was previously denied for apnea – Should I refile a claim?
Adding Background information in your post will help members understand what information you are looking for so they can assist you in finding it.
Rephrase the question: I was diagnosed with apnea in service and received a CPAP machine, but the claim was denied in 2008. Should I refile?
Question B. I may have PTSD- how can I be sure?
See how the details below give us a better understanding of what you’re claiming.
Rephrase the question: I was involved in a 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 of your claim?”
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Most Common VA Disabilities Claimed for Compensation:
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
DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS
Veterans Benefits Administration
Washington, D.C. 20420
May 6, 2009
All VA Regional Offices and Centers Fast Letter 09-20
SUBJ: Developing for Evidence of Herbicide Exposure in Haas-Related Claims from
Veterans with Thailand Service during the Vietnam Era
The enclosed document will serve as a substitute for an individual response from the Agent
Orange Mailbox (VAVBAWAS/CO/211/AGENTORANGE). When regional office
personnel receive claims based on herbicide exposure from veterans who served in
Thailand during the Vietnam era, they should place the enclosed document in the claims
folder rather than sending an inquiry to the Agent Orange Mailbox.
While the Haas case was pending, the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims stayed the
processing of certain disability claims based on herbicide exposure. The stay affected a
large number of veteran claimants with service in Thailand during the Vietnam era.
Thailand was a staging area for aircraft missions over Vietnam, and many veterans who
assisted with these missions received the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM) for their support
of the war effort. Disability claims from those veterans who received the VSM for
Thailand service, but who did not set foot in the country of Vietnam, were placed under the
Haas stay. With the lifting of the stay, these claims require development and adjudication.
M21-1MR, Part IV, Subpart ii, Chapter 2, Section C, Topic10, Block n, specifies that
claims based on herbicide exposure outside Vietnam require sending an e-mail inquiry to
the Agent Orange Mailbox for review of the Department of Defense (DoD) inventory
listing the herbicide use, testing, and storage sites. The inquiry may lead to evidence
supporting the claimed exposure. If the Agent Orange Mailbox inquiry cannot provide
probative evidence, the next step is sending an inquiry to the Army and Joint Services
Records Research Center (JSRRC). To facilitate a timely resolution of claims from
veterans with Thailand service, the Compensation and Pension Service, in conjunction
with DoD, has developed a document for inclusion in the claims file that will substitute for
an individual response from the Agent Orange Mailbox.
Regional Office Action
When developing herbicide-related disability claims from veterans with Thailand service
during the Vietnam era, regional offices will no longer send inquiries to the Agent Orange
Mailbox. Instead, a copy of the enclosed response document is placed in the veteran’s file.
This response document contains input from DoD and is intended to cover general claims
of exposure as well as a number of specific exposure claims. If the herbicide exposure
issue can be resolved based on this document, then no further development action is
necessary. If not, and sufficient information has been obtained from the veteran, send an
inquiry directly to JSRRC following its guidelines. If sufficient information cannot be
obtained from the veteran to meet JSRRC guidelines, produce a formal memo for the file
documenting efforts to obtain information, then forward the claim to the rating activity.
Questions about this fast letter should be e-mailed to:
Bradley G. Mayes
Compensation and Pension Service
1. Memorandum for the Record: Herbicide use in Thailand during the Vietnam Era
See Kurt Priessman report on "HERBICIDE USE IN THAILAND" http://veteransinfo.tripod.com/AO%20Thaila...s/herbicide.pdf
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