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Need To Know Where To Send The Sf 95 Getting Conflicting Answers


ytheydothis

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I sent my SF 95 to the Regional Counsel who had jurisdiction over my VISN. AT the time, he was only a block away from the VARO I deal with.

He was ready to settle with me in a few months after getting my evidence.A Peer Review had been done right away supporting my charges.

One reason it began to go fast is that I called him directly and made sure the VA knew they were on notice.

Then he, the Peer review doctor and the report of the review itself mysteriously disappeared.(I found it in 2003 in my C file but prior attempts had VA telling me if Never had existed.

I then sent it to the Office of General Counsel in Washington DC

Filed in Dec 1994.

Peer Review dated March 1995. edited this, put wrong date first

Sent to the OGC that summer, 1995

Awarded by settlement with OGC in mid 1997.

I believe we have here or it is at the VA web site or OGC web site, the names of the regional counsels and it is a good idea to call them if they are near your VARO to see where the SF 95 should go.

If the VARO gets a SF 95 they are supposed to refer it directly to their regional counsel.

Do you have legal representation?

Do you have copies of all VA med recs?

DO you have an IMO supporting the charges?

If you dont have a lawyer yet, did you prepare the SF 95 with the advise I have given here?

I had a legal background and was confident enough to deal with VA lawyers directly. I dont advise that unless you have done pro se or paralegal work yourself.

Edited by Berta
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Maybe best to get the right info from the horse's mouth at OGC-

It involves not only the VISN but also what VAMC as to where to send the SF 95 sometimes.

1-202-461-4995 OGC DC by phone

(I spoke to them last year so hopefully this number has not changed since then.

1-202-273-6385 OGC Fax

Here is the Regional Counsel Phone number list:

http://www.va.gov/ogc/rcoffices.asp

If you deal with Buffalo, Jeff Whiting might handle your case instead of Joe Moreno -and I think I still have his email and # as he handled something for me last year if you are VISN 1 NY, Buffalo RO.

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If you feel confident in your medical evidence you don't even need a lawyer-that is your right to do it yourself.

but it helps to study the FTCA regs first.Make sure the SF 95 is properly prepared.

I didnt have a lawyer or an IMO.

But I still feel these claims usually always need a strong IMO (that follows the FTCA/1151 format her) and a lawyer can cut through some VA BS you might have to put up with,as I did, with disappearing documents, light copies of handwritten med recs,hard to read stuff, the ignoring of my med evidence for my 1151 claim, and some very tough and very smart people at the OGC.

But I was tough too.

I wanted a lawyer at first but after 20 turned me down,I did it myself.I didnt know how to get a 'malpractice' lawyer as in those days they could not advertise their specialty.

Out of all of my multiple VA issues, my FTCA case was the easiest one to succeed in.

Because my documented evidence was probative beyond question, there was no other etiology for my husband's sudden death but for VA malpractice ,I proved the case completely ,

and the VA lawyers can read.

The 1151 issue I had-the VARO was horrendous to deal with-

far beyond the OGC.

I sure wish now that I had a lawyer to deal with that claim too.No lawyers for vets/widows regs then.

I don't advise doing any of this without IMO or lawyer but you do have the right to do it yourself.

Vets and survivors make many mistakes on the SF 95, as a VA OGC lawyer told me not long ago.

I have posted here under the FTCA 1151 forum here, advise as to how to avoid some of those errors.

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You can submit the SF-95 to the Patients' Advocate and/or the Director's office at the VAMC where the incident occurred. Take several signed completed copies with you and have at least one of them date/time stamped. Additionally, mail via Certified Mail RRR, a signed competed copy to the Regional Counsel. The requirement is that you submit your claim to the proper agency--VAMC, VARO, VARC, all qualify and are legally required to accept the claim. The Office of General Counsel in DC will most certainly be made aware of your claim very soon after you submit it. The most important thing is to get the SF-95 completed correctly, signed and submitted with proof of the date and time of submission.

In addition to Berta's great questions, was an Adverse Event Disclosure made or offered to you? If not, you should demand one through the Patients' Advocate.

http://www1.va.gov/vhapublications/viewpublication.asp?pub_id=1637

I offer this additional advice: DON'T discuss your claim on public/private internet sites! Anything you post can be used against you during the claim. Even when you get legal representation, the claim is still yours. You need to keep on top of what is going on all the time.

You stated that you have all the medical records. The VAMC has two (atleast) sets of medical records: (1) the electronic records and (2) a set of paper records which do not show up when you go to the Release of Information office to request a request copies of your records. You must ask for these specifically! There might be some resistance, but you are legally entitled to ALL of your records regardless of what media they are stored on. You are never required to give a reason for wanting a copy of your records when requesting them--so don't. Once the VA is aware of the claim, strange things start to happen with your records. Make sure you have them all before the VA is aware of your claim. I found that reading my medical records page by page prompted more complete memories.

Don't discuss your claim with anyone who is not directly involved in the claim and/or representing you! Keep a detailed a journal of everything that takes place as well as collect and safeguard all photos, appointment records, call records secure messaging and voice mail. I also recommend that you promptly sit down and write out every detail you can remember about the incident no matter how insignificant it may initially appear. Only share what you have written down with your legal counsel.

What state are you/VAMC located in? It makes a big difference in the amount you can be awarded as well as your rights to record interactions between you and the government.

Edited by GuaymasJim
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I forgot to add- you are a click away from Bergmann and Moore-their contact info is on the main forum page to the right of Claims Research stuff.

They are superb vet lawyers and Carrie Weletz , attorney for B & M, has been a SVR guest many times and those shows are archived in the SVR forum.

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