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  • 14 Questions about VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims

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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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  • Most Common VA Disabilities Claimed for Compensation:   

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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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dereekbanks

Claim Timeline - Atlanta Varo

Question

July 07, 2011

Claim filed for:

  • memory loss
  • insomnia
  • post traumatic stress disorder
  • hypertension (claimed as hypertensive vascular disease)
  • sleep apnea
  • generalized anxiety disorder
  • major depressive disorder
  • chronic adjustment disorder

    and I asked for and increase in my sc condition:
    • s/p low back injury with posterior (small) disc herniation and IVD at L4-L5 with degenerative changes at L1-L2
    • L4-L5 spinal nerve involvement with paralysis
    • left lower (claimed as back injury)

October 14, 2011

Received brown envelope with several documents that read:

"Complete and return an enclosedVA Form 21-4142, Authorization and Consent to Release Information...

Send any treatment records pertinent to your claimed condition(s),especially those which are recent

We need evidence showing that the following condition(s) existed frommilitary service to the present time: chronic adjustment disorder, major depressivedisorder, generalized anxiety disorder, sleep apnea, hypertension (claimed ashypertensive vascular disease), post-traumatic stress disorder, insomnia,memory loss

As we consider your claim, youmay submit evidence showing that your service-connected L4-L5 spinal nerveinvolvement with paralysis, left lower (claimed as back injury), s/p low backinjury with posterior (small) disc herniation and IVD at L4-L5 with degenerativechanges at L1-L2 [[has][have]] increased in severity…

We need specific details of thecombat related incident(s) that resulted in post-traumatic disorder (PTSD)…"

You may be entitled to compensation at the 100 percent rate if you areunable to secure and follow a substantially gainful occupation because ofyour service-connected disabilities. If you believe you qualify, complete,sign, and return the enclosed VA Form 21-8940, Veterans Application forIncreased Compensation Based on Unemployability."

I expected to receive all of the above except for the last one. Is it normal for the VA so just voluntarily send someone a for for TDIU when they did not file a claim for it?

October 18, 2011

Went to VA Regional Office and submitted all forms and evidence requested, including the application for TDIU.

Notes:

I filed my claim following the guidelines posted at http://www.howtoassemblevaclaims.com/step_7.html. I included my service medical records, current records from the VA hospital and the outpatient clinic the VA referred me to, where a Psychiatrist officially diagnosed me with all of the mental issues I filed a claim for.

On October 20, 2011 I went to the SS office and applied for SSI and SSDI under the Military Causality Service Case (MSCC) rule which expedites cases for veterans injured after October 1, 2011 while on active duty.

So now I wait. . .

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I've received the same notice several times. I think it's due to my % and the types of conditions claimed/existing/SC'd. At least I know it's an option when the time comes that I can no longer work. I assume by your post that you're not working? Are you retired? I also use the ATL VARO, and have posted some experiences with them and the Augusta VAMC. Don't know if it will help you, but I'd be curious to follow your story as you respond and get your other issues resolved.

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Atlanta VARO uses a lot of "cut and paste". The letter(s) reflect this.

They have been known to include statements that lead a veteran to believe that evidence already existing in the veteran's "C" file needs to be submitted (again).

The reference to TDIU is likely the result of various complaints and possibly some legal actions, and just maybe because the problems surrounding TDIU came to political notice.

The VA was not bothering to tell veterans that they might qualify for TDIU, and the result was that many did not know that they had it available.

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@ Justrluk:

I'm not working. I have not worked since April of this year. . . I did not retire from the military if that is what you mean. I was injured in '02 discharged in '03 and awarded 40% by the VA in '04. I took the 40%, found work and never looked back. Over the years I realized I could only do certain types of work due to my injury and I could never keep a job too long. One day my wife pointed out the numerous problems that I had since my discharge so I eventually went to the VA and started getting diagnosed with stuff I never thought I suffered from such as depression. The side effects from my meds, pain in my back, headaches and memory problems have gotten the best of me. I can't work any more!

So I guess I can say I'm retired.

I am familiar with your posts. I read through them before filing my claim. It was apart of my research when determining if I wanted a rep or not. Thx!!!

@ Chuck75:

I kinda figured it was a 'cut and paste' / generic packet after reading through it because everything they asked for, I submitted with my original statement attached to the initial claim. So before I went to the Regional Office to submit the evidence they requested on the 18th of this month, I simply opened saved file I typed back in July as my statement following the guidelines on the link I posted and hit print. I then grabbed one of the 5 prebundled copies of my medical records walked out the door. In essence, I gave them the same thing twice just in case the first stack of documents got misplaced. I did not know any thing about the political issues surrounding TDIU. I just Googled it and came across some interesting stuff. That makes sense now!

I'll keep you posted on my progress.

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Best of luck in your claims! Hopefully, the ATL will take it easy on you...

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Work on your letter for your PTSD, have your wife do one for your symptoms that she has seen since you left the servcie / came home from the war. The AV rates PTSD under chronic adjustment disorder along with depression and all other mental health issues. some of what you have are a part of PTSD. I have worked with some vets out of that RO, do not blow of these letter. If you was near an IED tell them that too. Try and get with some that was in your unit and have them send in letter to tell of the firefight or what ever.

@ Justrluk:

I'm not working. I have not worked since April of this year. . . I did not retire from the military if that is what you mean. I was injured in '02 discharged in '03 and awarded 40% by the VA in '04. I took the 40%, found work and never looked back. Over the years I realized I could only do certain types of work due to my injury and I could never keep a job too long. One day my wife pointed out the numerous problems that I had since my discharge so I eventually went to the VA and started getting diagnosed with stuff I never thought I suffered from such as depression. The side effects from my meds, pain in my back, headaches and memory problems have gotten the best of me. I can't work any more!

So I guess I can say I'm retired.

I am familiar with your posts. I read through them before filing my claim. It was apart of my research when determining if I wanted a rep or not. Thx!!!

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