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Meb Findings And Appeal


RobTip

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Hi all,I'm in bit of a pickle and need advice. I'be been active duty AF for22 years and am at the end of the MEB process.I have service related disabilities that caused the MEB.Here's what I have:Severe back and groin pain. Diagnosed by neurosurgeon.Had my L5 S1 replaced with prosthetic disk.Herniated L4 L5Spinal stenosis and L3 L4 partially removed.Constant severe pain in left leg.Constant severe pain left and right groin area.Had electronic stimulator installed.Been on heavy narcotics for 2 years.Been on convalescent leave and bed rest for 12 months straight.Constant migraines due to work injury and several CAT scans.Cannot lay flat or sit up straight.Cannot walk without a cane.6 surguries and countless pain block injections.The PEBLO folks sent off my file without ROM test.Findings came back a week ago with an insulting 20% disability rating.Have to go in tomorrow to sign the findings paperwork, which I will disagree with.I'm pretty sure the PEBLO people did not send in all of my records.They ordered an ROM test for July 6-which is after I have to sign the papers.I also have sleep apnea. I had a test done, but it was right after my first surgery and was on heavy narcotics and could not lay flat. The doc said the test was inconclusive due to those factors and I'd need a retest when I'm not on meds and can lay flat.Because of the lack of use of my left leg, my neurosurgeon ordered a permanent disability tag for my car. But, I still cannot drive due to my leg and back.I know I'm going to have to appeal these findings, and would greatly appreciate any help/advice from this forum.Thanks,Rob

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I agree with Tbird that those links will help.

You stated: “my neurosurgeon ordered a permanent disability tag for my car. But, I still cannot drive due to my leg and back.I know I'm going to have to appeal these findings, and would greatly appreciate any help/advice from this forum.Thanks,Rob “

Make sure ,when you are discharged, that you have a complete copy of your service medical records.

The above doctor's rationale, (hopefully well documented in your SMRs, might be critical down the line, when you apply for VA disability.)

I suggest you begin the VA disability processed as soon as you can. Is there anyone on base that provides transitional help as to filing for a VA claim?

You are right- 20% seems absurd for your disability.

“The PEBLO folks sent off my file without ROM test. “VA will do a ROM at some point, as a C & P exam, when you file the VA claim.

I suggest you also need to go over the CRDP/CRSC program:

http://www.military.com/benefits/military-pay/special-pay/combat-related-special-compensation.html

Personally I think you should apply for TDIU right from the git go with the VA.However I feel you should get a good VSO or vet rep to help with the claim.

The Sleep Apnea should be claimed as well as this back problem.And definitely the migraines.

On the TDIU form you should tell them of any side affects from the meds they give you that would hinder employment, as well as anything else in your SMRs that show you are unemployable.(which might be in the neuro surgeon's notes, as he signed something for the parking disabled tag indicating your disability is permanent.

I might be jumping the gun here on the TDIU ( and don't let anyone tell you that your current rating prevents you from filing for TDIU)

but it is important to preserve a TDIU filing date for the best effective date of comp if the claims are successful.

We have Retirees here, CRDPers and CRSCers, and others familiar with your type of disabilities and I hope they chime in.

I am a civilian so this might be a real dumb question. Do you have any appeal rights while still inservice ,as to the 20% lowball percentage?

If so are you pursuing those appeal rights?

If not, then hopefully your VA claim, as a veteran ,will alter that percentage.

You might also want to consider putting some money aside if you need an IMO.

An Independent Medical Opinion (we have forum on IMOs here) is often the only way a veteran can get a fair rating percentage from the VA.these days.

My daughter is a vet (USAF) and she went to every transition briefing she could. She said the VA one was excellent in many respects. They had a Vet rep there for questions too and gave everyone the little VA benefit booklet (which in no way really covers it all) but still, this is a briefing that every one mustering out should attend.

(being the daughter of a disabled veteran-my husband, she knew however that some of the VA stuff didn't even begin to come close to how long and frustrating the VA claims process is )

It might be a way ,at that type of briefing) you could tie up right away with someone from a major Vet org like DAV, AL, VFW etc, who can help begin the VA claim process for you.

Claim ALL disabilities that are documented in your SMRs.

When you check out the PEB MEB link I am sure you will find that you are not alone.

The 20% is absolute crap in my opinion.

And thank you for your many many long years of service for the US of A!!!!!!

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Rob, I just checked out the MEB link and saw you posted there already and someone advised a JAG.

The only thing I could find that might help you is this locator link:

http://legalassistance.law.af.mil/content/locator.php

because when I googled JAG USAF Alaska, I found they have a job opening or two in Alaska- for a JAG-

not a good sign for any retiree who needs one.

I sure hope there is someway for you to contact someone on this for legal advise and it appeared that you are dealing with a lot right now and cannot think of traveling too far for an inperson meeting with any legal advisor .

I will see what else I can find out. Are you in Anchorage or Juneau?

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Maybe this will help?

Legal Services Locator

left_corner.gif

Legal Activities

* If a location needs to be updated, please submit your request to: mail.gif [email=afloa.helpdesk@maxwell.af.mil?subject=http://legalassistance.law.af.mil%20location%20update]Web Admin

3 Offices in AK

Miles

Location (Branch)

Contact Information

MAP

Elmendorf AFB

(Air Force)

673 ABW/JA, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson Legal Office

8517 20th St. Suite 330

Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, AK 99506

Phone: 907-552-3048 317-552-3048

http://www.elmendorf.af.mil/3Wing/Units/JA/Webdocs/

MAP

Eielson AFB

(Air Force)

354 FW/JA

354 Broadway St. Unit 2B

Eielson AFB, AK 99702

Phone: 907-377-4114 DSN 317-377-4114

http://www.eielson.af.mil/units/wing_staff/legal.htm

MAP

Fort Richardson

(Air Force)

Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson Legal Office

600 Richardson Drive #5700

Anchorage, AK 99505

Phone: 907-384-0371 317-384-0371

http://www.usarak.army.mil/jag/

Source: http://legalassistance.law.af.mil/content/legal_activities.php

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Hi Berta--thanks a bunch!

I'm still active duty, and there's a JAG office in base (Elmendorf).

I'll give them a call.

The odd thing, among others--they never did a ROM test. Thy scheduled it after my findings came back.

Also, even though the original head injuries were documented in my records, had been seen a few times per year for migraines since and had scans--they didn't even acknowledge that issue in my claim.

Thus whole thing is just odd--and I feel that I'm getting the shaft!

Thanks for the advice and links--I'll certainly use them.

On another note, and this may help a little--I'm a charter member of the George W. Bush Presidential library and organization. I have correspondence with them monthly, and disabled vets is one of his causes. I may have to fire off the info there too--it sure wouldn't hurt.

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