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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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BFR

Imo? Or Va Doc? And Need Advice On Timing

Question

Good evening all,

I'm currently rated at 20% for Fibromyalgia (FM) and 10% for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). I fit the definition for 40% for FM and 60 for CFS that I find on the eCFR. As a Gulf War vet these are presumptive conditions. All I should need is a statement in VA-speak with the proper levels included.

I also have a 0% for eczema, but discovered that I may qualify for 60% if I interpret the definition on the eCFR correctly.

Background:

I filed for those conditions as soon as Congress changed the law to make them presumptive for the Gulf War vets.

I filed a NOD in mid December of 2012, requesting the De Novo process to review and adjust the levels appropriately. No action on this yet.

I first filed for CFS in 1996 and was denied.

My questions for the community:

- Regarding FM and CFS: Should I wait for this de novo process to finish before obtaining and submitting a new IMO?

- Is it "better" or "easier" if I obtain the same information in my VA medical file from a VA doc at the local VA outpatient clinic?

- Should I wait to submit a claim to increase the rating for eczema until the FM and CFS process is finished? A representative once told me that submitting new paperwork while something was in process would cause the entire thing to stop and start over, putting me back at the end of the line for a decision. I don't know if thats accurate or not, but I would like the claim date to be as early as possible for backpay reasons.

- the eCFR lists "7806-Dermatitis or eczema" on a single line. Is it possible to get separate ratings for both?

- Is it possible to get the rating for CFS backdated to 1996? I did not file something each year. There was about a 15 year gap between the first and second filings.

That's a lot of questions, and I want to say Thank You! in advance to anyone who answers.

Ben

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“Regarding FM and CFS: Should I wait for this de novo process to finish before obtaining and submitting a new IMO?”

If you have submitted medical evidence tat would put you into a higher rating for the FM and CFS, then, in my opinion, it is best to wait to see what the denovo review decides.

This way, if the increases are denied, you have a C & P result that denied the claim (get a copy of the C & P exam) which a good IMO doctor can argue against with a full medical rationale.

“the eCFR lists "7806-Dermatitis or eczema" on a single line. Is it possible to get separate ratings for both? “ No

“Is it possible to get the rating for CFS backdated to 1996? “

That would require filingt a separate CUE claim on the 1996 decision and identifying the legal error VA made in that decision , that was detrimental to you (ie: no comp)

-The medical evidence that should have warranted an award in 1996,if it existed and VA knew of it, had to have already been established ,by the record ,when the VA made the 1996 decision.

We have a wealth of info here on CUE claims in our CUE forum.

The BVA CUE awards Carlie posted there recently are excellent examples of a successful CUE claim.

PS, are you still employed? If not, what did VA say as to TDIU consideration when they gave you the 80%?

If you are not employed, I think and IMO would best be beneficial to you if it covered the TDIU issue and any other SC that could potentially warrant SMC down the road.

Edited by Berta

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Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my questions, Berta. Here are the answers to yours:

- I will take your advice and wait for the outcome. I just wish the VA wasn't so slow. (Don't we all!)

- I didn't think so on the eczema and dermatitis, but it was worth asking.

- How do I get a copy of the C&P exam?

- Re: 1996: I think I only submitted a self-reported statement requesting a service connection for CFS. I dont know if CUE could be invoked, but who knows...it's an illness that pretty much relies on self reporting for diagnosis since there is no test for it.

- Yes, I'm employed. At the VA of all places :ph34r:. I intend to be employed somewhere until I simply cannot function well enough to hold a job. That day will come, and IMO much sooner than it should because of these problems.

- What is SMC? (Is there a list of acronyms on this site? I see a lot of them and understand some, but many are beyond me.)

With much thanks,

Ben


This is a board case for dermatitis:

http://www.vaforum.net/va-case-files/7061-entitlement-initial-compensable-disability-rating-left-foot-dermatitis.html

I think these are rated on symptoms, like mental heath conditions and not separately ratable.

A very interesting site! thank you for sharing it. I do wish it had a better search engine. It is a wealth of information.

Ben

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send a letter to the VA Hospital near you. many times this is the same place you had your c/p exam. I know others farm the c/p exams to contract docs on the outside.

Send the letter attn.; release of information. Simply state, "I am requesting a copy of any and all C/P exams pertaining to me." Please send them to the below listed address.

Write your name, address and claim number in your title block, sign above your name and send away.

It depends on the hospital which determines how long this will take. I can obtain these for vets in about 10 working days here in Kentucky.

SMC is "Special Monthly Codes" there are different codes that relate to different examples of compensation paid to veterans who fall in the perimeter of the qualifications for a particular smc.

I wouldn't do anything more until you receive a rating decision from the DRO. By then you should have your C/P exam results for you to review.

Hope this helps!

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send a letter to the VA Hospital near you.

Hope this helps!

It does help, and I will do that, thank you!

Ben

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