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Questions Regarding My Bva Decision


Hello Veterans,

I would like to seek any advice from any veteran that may have been down the same path which I am writing about. I am going to try and make this as clear and to the point as I can, but as you know when your dealing with VA its usually a long and complicated mess.

I have been back and froth with my RO and BVA since 1983. I have an ongoing claim on my lumbar compression fracture of L2L3and PTSD due to numerous remands and vacates from BVA. Vacates were due to RO not sending me to Neurologist and Orthopedic Surgeon. The PTSD was vacated because they would exclude the testing for PTSD when I would go in for my mental C&P end of it.

In 2008, RO sent me again to a bogus C&P exam excluding have the Neurlogist and Orthopedic Surgeon again. Also had me come back three weeks later and have a nurse run me through supposed testing for my lumbar case. I received the statement of the case and filed an NOD due to the nurse they sent me back to lied about what testing she performed. Couldn't have done the testing she said I did due to just previously going through prostate surgery. They ignored my NOD and gave my lumbar L2-3ompression fracture and extra 10%. I was rated at 20%. They had to go back to 1994 to reimburse me.

In 2009, I received a new C&P for PTSD. I received the exam from the Dr. He was very thorough and I received more testing than I should have but he wanted to make sure all bases were covered.

AXIS I: 1. pain disorder associated with psychological features and a general medical condition(at least in part related to his 30% service connected back concerns

2. PTSD/anxiety disorder not otherwise specified

3. Dysthymic disorder

4. Intermittent major depressive disorder, recurrent

5. Alcohol dependence, in remission

AXIS II: Likely personality disorder traits including avoidance

AXIS III See medical records

AXIS IV Chronic medical conditions and unemployability (by decision of Social Security)

AXIS V Global Assessment of Functioning 51

The examiner remarks it is as least as likely as not that my PTSD, depression, pain and mood disorder are service connected.

I received the RO's decision in May 2010 and they kept me at 30% lumbar and did not address my complaints of still not having the Neurologist or the Orthopedic Surgeun to do my exam as well as the followup bogus exam from the nurse.

They also gave me 30% for pain/mood disorder and did not take in account my PTSD. I filed another NOD casue I did not want this to go to BVA for a final decision. They sent it anyway irgnoring my NOD. They never sent me anything to say they had sent it to WA BVA. I received a letter in July from BVA saying they had my case and since these issues were on remand since 1994 they would expedite it through.

So I took some advice and wrote a formal request for reconsideration and sent in all additional information as well as stuff I felt that the RO neglected to sent along with my file to help my case.

Last week I received my decision from BVA

They granted me PTSD

They granted me no more than 10% for Radiculopathy(which I didn't even know what that was, did not ask for it)

denied me any more than 30%on lumbar L2-L3 (In my fromal request for reconsideration, I requested they vacate this decision due to the RO not following the demands of BVA decision.BVA toally ignored there own demands to RO)

They only remanded the issue of Pain/Mood disorder back to RO because I sent BVA a copy of that NOD that the RO just happened to not get just before they hastily got my case off to BVA. BVA believes I should have received due process and want RO to address my NOD. What is funny is in the same NOD , I addressed the Lumbar issue due to RO not following BVA demands.

Now my questions...

1. If they granted me service connected PTSD How long will it take RO to come up with a percentage and what will the rater base it on?

2. Since this Pain/ mood disorder decision has ben remanded back to RO. Can I have them address pain/ mood disoder as two seperate diagnosis codes and rate me seperately on both?

3. How do I appeal the denial they gave my on my lumbar at BVA since I did remark in my NOD the fact of them not following BVA demands on getting an Orthoprdic surgeon and a Neurologist to do my C&P exam. This is all on the same NOD that BVA is remanded only for the pain/mood disorder. Who would I appeal to BVA or RO on this one?

4. How does BVA get passed not following their own remand and denying me on the lumbar issue?

Okay..I know this is confusing..I hope there is someone who can give me some answers to this ongoing struggle. I have had lawyers involved in the passed, but since it had been takinf so long for any real decision they have just dropped me. So I am going it alone. Thanks for your time and interest.

Also I filed for IU a couple months ago. I read on this site that even though I did not make up the percentage I could still possibley receive it. I have been on Social Security Disability since 1996. I was also deemed and Voc Rehab failure in 1994 by the VA.

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Again I would appreciate anyone who has some input or suggestions on my case...I have been going it alone and at this point am lost as to what to do or expect..

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You are only going to get one rating for all your psychological disorders. They combine all the issues and grant a rating for the worst condition. If you want to appeal the BVA decision you have to go to the court of veteran appeals. If you can't work solely due to SC conditions then you should be able to get TDIU. Did you get SSDI solely for SC conditions? The next time you want to appeal a VARO decision ask for a DRO Hearing before you go to the BVA.

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I just have another question regarding the Psychological issues I discussed below....when I received a service connection secondary pain and mood disorder on my service connected lumbar compression fractures. Does that mean that the PTSD that the BVA granted Iwhich was on another issue other than my back is all tied together?

PTSD was to be a primary issue that has been on remand since 1994.


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I will step out on a limb and make a prediction.

A GAF of 51 means you have some severe issues. I think you should, or will eventually get to 70% on your PTSD with that low of GAF.

With 70%, and other things, you should have no trouble qualifying for TDIU if you are not working.

However, my predicition is that the VA will lowball you at 50, 30, or even 10%, just because "thats what they do". The love to put Vets on the Hampster wheel taking 10 years or more to get benefits, which should take about 4 months.

Since you have been in the system a while, it is even possible for you to get TDIU on this round, however, I think a lowball is more likely.

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