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  • Trouble Remembering? This helped me.

    I have memory problems and as some of you may know I highly recommend Evernote and have for years. Though I've found that writing helps me remember more. I ran across Tom's videos on youtube, I'm a bit geeky and I also use an IPad so if you take notes on your IPad or you are thinking of going paperless check it out. I'm really happy with it, I use it with a program called Noteshelf 2.

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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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    • So, my lawyer sent an IME w/ IMO and filed a supplemental claim solely for IU on March 20.

      It was closed on March 25, and va.gov just states claim closed and nothing more.

      Hopefully, I get good news.
    • Thanks for the responses. I am filing a new claim but will continue pushing the NOD. My new question is it stated in law or statute that if during the claims process the VA finds conditions that could possibly rate service connection that was not originally filed for, the VA will “invite” the veteran to file the claim on the claims form. Reason I ask is that my private DBQs, NEXUS letter, and even the VA nurse examiner's DBQs lists bilateral upper radiculopathy as present. If it is written in statute or official guidance it might qualify as a CUE. Just looking at all angles. 
    • Everyone needs to read our stories so they can try to avoid these screws by the va...
      Thank you, everyone contributes, good or bad, all of our stories will help others, and yes, they have been stated by others for ages, over and over, but we just get depressed, and the time turns into years as they screw us..

      Welcome to the department of Veterans Affairs!  I can honestly say, "been there, done that".  

      Even after winning my tdiu in 2017, it was back to the drawing board as VA hornswaggeld my effective date.  (but of course).  

      I finally won my tdiu effective date in Feb. 2020, 18 years after I first applied!!!  

      Here is how they managed to drag mine out 18 years:

      1.  They never adjuticated my decison until 2009, where they called it "moot".  

      2.  I appealed, said it was not moot because it could result in an earlier effective date and SMC S under Bradley vs Peake.  The judge agreed with me, and ordered VARO consider me for extra schedular TDIU, under 4.16 b.  

      3.  The VARO piddles with  the remand for 3 years, and hoped I wouldnt notice.  I noticed and raised cane until they adjuticated it.  (denied of course).  

      4.  Finally, after the baord denied again, I hired a lawyer, in 2014, and appealed to CAVC.   

      5.  The lawyer won a remand, got an IMO and I won tdiu in 2017.  But at the wrong effective date, even after 15 years.  

      6.  I hired another lawyer, Chris Attig, and appealed the effective date, and he won a remand for effective date.  Trip 2 to CAVC.  

      7.  Mr. Attig won a remand, and advised me to get another IMO.  

      8.  The board awarded my earlier effective date in Feb. 2020.  

           So, I do have advice fighting VA for TDIU, they fought and fought and I hung in there and won it all.  

      ADVICE:  Dont count on VA, they could easily throw your fax in the trash.  Follow up!  
    • "Keep in mind that due to the nature of the digestive system, VA would most likely combined your conditions and pay you at the higher rate to avoid pyramiding".    That is one of my main gripes.  They are only listing the GERD with hiatal hernia and ignoring the rest of my gastric issues such as the gastritis which I also had in service.  I included it in my 2007 request for increase and again in 2019.  The info from the civilian dr that stated I had the gastritis with H pylori was not even provided to the examiner in 2007, nor did he have my VA health records. The 2019 request was based on an EGD I had AT THE VA in Jan 2019.   I filed for an increase 6 Mar and they did an ACE on 27 Mar and downgraded to noncompensable on that date.  The only reason I was thinking CUE:  38 CFR § 3.326 - Under Examinations  it states (c) Provided that it is otherwise adequate for rating purposes, a statement from a private physician may be accepted for rating a claim without further examination".  
    • Enough has been said on this topic. This forum is not the proper forum for an attorney and former client to hash out their problems. Please take this offline
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Newbie Here

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Hello everyone,

I came across this site a couple of days ago and have been stalking it every since and decided to finally post. I came across this site because I started searching for like minded people that understands what I'm going through as far as dealing with the VA, compensation, and pain (physical, emotional, mental not to mention the extra layer that's added by the va).

I am currently receiving 20% rating which is not nearly enough for the "damage". It has been really hard dealing. Long story short (hopefully some can relate and share your experience). I went into the military at 18 in Dec 2003. I got stationed in NM and in May 2005, I fainted out of the shower and woke up on the marble floor eventually. Now on top of that i was dealing with depression and some insomnia. I went to the drs about 2-3 weeks later because I was in pain, he told me that with my injury I wouldn't be able to deploy (which was one of the main things I wanted to experience) so I was even more depressed. At that time a program came up that allowed active duty members to switch to ANG so I did it. I was dealing with the same issues then and could not participate in pe. In 2008, I left my job because of my issues and was trying to get help but va was giving me the run around. I ended up going in deep depression because of my situation, not working, constant pain and va wasn't helping me. I got married in 2009, felt bad because I was helping, so I tried a part time job in 2010. I was only working 16 hrs a week (administrative work) but it was very hard and painful and I used to get very behind. Almost every night my husband was coming to my job after work helping me or we would go back at night or weekends to finish. It was embarrassing. I finally stop working there in 2013 because I couldn't take it anymore and I was starting to make to many mistakes, and couldn't focus or concentrate.

So I haven't worked a full time job since 2008 and haven't worked at all since June 2013 all due to my issues from the military.

Through out my va files it show that have brought up the pains etc since when it happened except for the depression and insomnia. I was embarrassed to talk about my depression and I thought you only really tall about if your suicidal. PLEASE BE AWARE THESE ARE MY THOUGHTS AT 21YRS OLD! I made a lot of mistakes dealing with the VA because I didn't tell them a lot. Like I didn't know I could have been medically released from active duty.

So now I'm ready to fight back again because I just can't go on through this crazy cycle. From the constant pain to depression to insomnia (currently 2:51am) to anxiety I feel like I'm going crazy. So many ppl I know are telling me to not give up and reading the info here has helped so much.

I am actually really nervous because I've been known to be the "tough" and independent one and I've always dealt with all this privately even not telling my husband everything. The hardest thing is accepting that I need help.

I just hate going to c&p because it's already hard to go in and admit my problems and they look at me with there judgmental eyes because I'm "young". I have been dealing with this for {unbelievably} 9yrs. Now that I am older and wiser than before I'm ready to go at it again. I'm just going to trust God and know that He knows MY truth.

So I will be here sharing what happens and hope to get and give great feedback. I'll be praying for you all as well because I KNOW what some of us is going through and the financial stress is no joke on top of the injuries.

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Welcome to Hadit.com and good luck with the VA..

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Welcome.

Hang in there.

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Welcome! :smile:

As hard as it may be, things will never get better if you miss a C & P or don't jump thru every hoop and fill out every paper.

Hang in there for this part and your life will improve.

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Welcome to Hadit.

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  • Similar Content

    • By Iceman's_Wife
      Question:   VA Form 21-526EZ page 8 section 13.     Should all the items from the VA Problem list (medical records) be included on the form, including secondary problems and other items such as diabetes or ONLY the service connected problems?   Post Vietnam, no AO
        My spouse's condition has deteriorated in the last 10 years and we need to be re-evaluated.   Last year, the VA Rep submitted a claim and the Comp&Pen Doctor asked us for an MRI.   From there it gets murky trying to get assistance for documentation.
       
       
       
       
       
    • By Iceman's_Wife
      My question:  Should all items that impact his disability be listed on the VA Form 21-526EZ?   If something is secondary such as pain, that should be listed?   
      BACKGROUND:  I need assistance with VA Form 21-526EZ.    On page 8 section 13, it asks for the list of disabilities.    Does this mean ALL items from his problem list (VA medical records)?    For example I can easily extract 20 items from his VA medical problem list BUT the VA Veterans Advisor only posted 4 line items which do NOT give a complete picture. 
      1.  paralysis external nerve (mild)
      2. lumoscaral strain  (mild)
      3. paralysis median nerve  (mild)
      4. degenerative arthritis of spine  (mild)
      After 10+ years of progressive degeneration, a year ago, we submitted a form for re-evaluation of his service-connected medical conditions.   The MRI from the 2009 determination is missing from his records.  The comp&pen Dr indicated that it was our responsibility to provide documentation to him on what changed.   We assumed that the comp&pen doctor would conduct an exam/order MRI or could extract the information from his records.   He also indicated that pain (consistently documented as 9/10) is not a consideration for disability, that it is immaterial to VA.   
      Only one (from the 4 listed) line items was increased 10%.   The current MRI indicates his spine has moderate to severe degeneration.  
      The VA Veterans Advisor indicated that we should NOT resubmit again unless we can get a doctors statement specifically indicating which line item has progressed from mild.  I have asked the Spinal Cord Injury Primary Care doctor for assistance, provided her with research documentation and she said she would but that was 2 months ago and nothing was put in his records.  
      In advance, thank you
       
       
    • By Greenhat0311
      Hey brothers and sisters,
      So I just had my C&P for my right shoulder secondary to my left shoulder injury. Since I've injured I tend to put more strain on my right shoulder to compensate for functional loss. This has caused me to have pain and limited ROM in both shoulders. This scumbag at the VA left his opinion. Even though all my tests showed limited ROM and pain on movement of right shoulder. What's next?
       
      MEDICAL OPINION SUMMARY
       -----------------------
       RESTATEMENT OF REQUESTED OPINION: 
       a. Opinion from general remarks: Secondary Service Connection.
       Is the Veteran's shoulder condition right at least as likely as not (50
       percent or greater probability) proximately due to or the result of rotator
       cuff tendonitis, left shoulder (non dominant)?
       b. Indicate type of exam for which opinion has been requested: RIGHT 
      SHOULDER
       TYPE OF MEDICAL OPINION PROVIDED: [ MEDICAL OPINION FOR SECONDARY SERVICE
       CONNECTION ]
       b. The condition claimed is less likely than not (less than 50%
       probability) proximately due to or the result of the Veteran's service
       connected condition. 
       c. Rationale: Within the concept of a pathologic entity of one specific site
       or joint of the human body (right shoulder in this case) it is very
       hypothetical to theorize or to try to conceptualize that such a pathologic
       process would be secondary to a SC pathological process at a separate site
       such as ROTATOR CUFF TENDONITIS, LEFT SHOULDER (NON DOMINANT).
       To ascribe a distant pathologic entity (RIGHT SHOULDER) to be secondary to
       the already mentioned SC condition, does not fit within the realm of a peer
       reviewed logical manifestation of diseases as written over centuries in the
       medical books. Even trying to force a connection between such SC condition
       and the RIGHT SHOULDER condition imperils the scientific knowledge in
       medicine that tries to explain disease processes and their interconnections
       in the most logical, reasonable and responsible ways. There is no evidence 
      in
       the scientific medical literature of such connection.
       Therefore, the claimed condition is less likely than not proximately due to
       or the result of the Veteran's service connected condition. And the SC
       condition neither aggravates the RIGHT SHOULDER condition.
    • By Spidey
      Hello fellow veterans.
      I had an experience over years- each Spring, feel a lot better after the much worse Winter.  A chronic, physical, neurological, pain condition means the normal forces of life get multiplied or muted.
      This year, worst Winter, but Spring brought a good day- so I went out, Motrin augmented, and used tractor to fix dirt road that was like a moonscape of potholes.
      People came out along the stretch. Some angered, some wondering, some wanting to talk, and one person offered 600 for gravel in front of their place.
      While placing the gravel (showing where to dump it) someone else wanted gravel next door on the road- I saw to it.
       
      Soon, 10,000 dollars of gravel spread over a mile- and all I had to do was show people the gravel was appropriate for their investment, the results were obvious.
      So, eventually, over a month passed, 60 truckloads (30 trips) and the road was done.  Some complained, others angry, others reassuring, others with critical useful information (how to make the road).
      I went home when someone took a tractor and dug up the gravel in a sort of angry move.
      When I went home, wondered how I worked for a month plus past the much worse pain, pain from Motrin harming kidneys, yet when I got home, was unwilling to do laundry, clean house, vacuum, Spring cleaning...  I thought hard.  The answer?

      The Placebo Effect. 
      No, I took no sugar pills- but when one goes to be tested with a sugar pill it is always a PERSON saying the pill helped.  A PERSON that one meets up with to see the results..  It is the PERSON not the PILL that makes a significant percentage feel their symptoms improve temporarily.
      So, I realized, this year the Spring improvement was augmented by leaving the home- Nature always guides with discomfort if doing the wrong thing, pleasure if doing the right thing- moving back towards being near others- mean, angry, helpful, reassuring, no matter- just be near the (if you will) herd.
      Disability isolates, insulates, makes one away from others, more so with time.  I avoid getting help from family- over decades it just hurts em to see it.  I avoid the VA because they very, very, often do more harm than good if not extremely vigilant.
      Disability alters sleep-wake time.  It makes people get introverted.  It makes ordinary pleasures- eating at a restaurant- unpleasant. Makes having a mate problematic (in a few senses).  But aside from all this, merely being NEAR OTHERS in a physical, not just online way (I am pretty much a spider on the web, dispensing solutions wherever inspired, since the days of Compuserve, Netscape, and Prodigy). I can explain how this probably works.
      In each persons gut (mouth to tail) there are microbes, bacteria like, much or most of your body weight is not you.  This means much of what makes a human operate or inoperable is the microbes NOT suffering from your disability- but from isolation from OTHER HUMANS and their microbiome.  Just being near a person (not necessarily that close!) means your microbiome matches up with other peoples- and a silent equalizing happens.
      This explains why pain is so depressing, why depression is so isolating, and why isolating is so pandemic to the disabled.
      This explains how the Placebo Effect works.
      This explains why young people join terrorist groups- and how to fix it- get a non terror group for them to join.
      This explains in part why people laugh more, louder, at jokes if in a room of people
      This explains how people suspend disbelief much more in a theater than alone watching a show

      Altogether, a solution offered for those in misery and won't even let that word (and others) pop to the surface of their awareness is to just get near other people.   Try this...

      Go to a grocery store or similar venue.  Walk slow, be fairly dressed, not unkempt.  Shop.  When you see someone with another person, just walk up real discreet and comment on their purchase.  See how they light up?  Do it again.  And again. Maybe crack a joke. 

      Now, go to the checkstand.  Pay for what you bought.  When the checker (forced) says ...would you like to donate your money or change to ...  you say ...Nah, I am trying to quit...  or tell them another joke (Do these GMO free eggs come with free HBO?)
      When you leave, look how you feel- do you feel better mentally despite the possible pain from ambulating about?
      Seems plain we vets should try to meet up with other, very near, vets for a bite to eat, a pizza party, a regularly recurring thing.  Something like a 12 step group without the ...stuff that has creeped into that movement over decades...  Maybe call it a Half Step movement?  At Ease?  Ah.  Not good at naming things.
      Let me know if this resonates with you.  Try to please Nature by getting near others even if you usually wait to feel better to get out- instead, feel better by meeting up, even hold a meet at your place if practical. Hot dogs and a loaf of bread and ketchup probably is enough.

      Consider the reward from being selfless.  If you want a smile, see this video and if you identify with its meme about pain and being trapped. Notice the hero is not alone.
      Spidey
    • By Lemuel
      I just filed a petition for a Writ of Certiorari to SCOTUS on the "Feres Doctrine" which is used to deny veterans access to evidence and tort claims.  No jury trier of fact.  The BVA is unable to order evidence be made available to claimants.  The DVA thumbs its nose, as it did in my case, at the RBA disputes lodged under the rules to obtain evidence.  The Circuit Courts won't get involved because of the Feres Doctrine while expressing concerns about the Feres Doctrine's Constitutionality.
      Petition was mailed Saturday.  Don't know how long it will take to get an answer but only 1% get heard by the Supreme Court (SCOTUS).  Have a much better chance at it this time than when I attempted in 1989.  I shelled out more than $1,000.00 in printing and mailing 45 copies (143 pg.)  to SCOTUS and 1 copy each to 10 interest parties this time.  Big gamble on my part.  Need to publicize it.  Is there a Journalist on board?
      Search Bray v United States at SCOTUS (new petition) in a week or so.  Bray v United states at the 10th Circuit, #18-8051, in a couple of days should have the SCOTUS petition posted on PACER.  Also submitted a pre-decision copy to the Court of Veterans Claims (CAVC) which should post to the docket of Bray v Wilkie, #17-2990.
      Is anyone interested in joining?  Does anyone know a law school that might take it up?  I'm self represented because it is extremely difficult to get an attorney because of the Feres Doctrine.
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    • So, my lawyer sent an IME w/ IMO and filed a supplemental claim solely for IU on March 20.

      It was closed on March 25, and va.gov just states claim closed and nothing more.

      Hopefully, I get good news.
    • Thanks for the responses. I am filing a new claim but will continue pushing the NOD. My new question is it stated in law or statute that if during the claims process the VA finds conditions that could possibly rate service connection that was not originally filed for, the VA will “invite” the veteran to file the claim on the claims form. Reason I ask is that my private DBQs, NEXUS letter, and even the VA nurse examiner's DBQs lists bilateral upper radiculopathy as present. If it is written in statute or official guidance it might qualify as a CUE. Just looking at all angles. 
    • Everyone needs to read our stories so they can try to avoid these screws by the va...
      Thank you, everyone contributes, good or bad, all of our stories will help others, and yes, they have been stated by others for ages, over and over, but we just get depressed, and the time turns into years as they screw us..

      Welcome to the department of Veterans Affairs!  I can honestly say, "been there, done that".  

      Even after winning my tdiu in 2017, it was back to the drawing board as VA hornswaggeld my effective date.  (but of course).  

      I finally won my tdiu effective date in Feb. 2020, 18 years after I first applied!!!  

      Here is how they managed to drag mine out 18 years:

      1.  They never adjuticated my decison until 2009, where they called it "moot".  

      2.  I appealed, said it was not moot because it could result in an earlier effective date and SMC S under Bradley vs Peake.  The judge agreed with me, and ordered VARO consider me for extra schedular TDIU, under 4.16 b.  

      3.  The VARO piddles with  the remand for 3 years, and hoped I wouldnt notice.  I noticed and raised cane until they adjuticated it.  (denied of course).  

      4.  Finally, after the baord denied again, I hired a lawyer, in 2014, and appealed to CAVC.   

      5.  The lawyer won a remand, got an IMO and I won tdiu in 2017.  But at the wrong effective date, even after 15 years.  

      6.  I hired another lawyer, Chris Attig, and appealed the effective date, and he won a remand for effective date.  Trip 2 to CAVC.  

      7.  Mr. Attig won a remand, and advised me to get another IMO.  

      8.  The board awarded my earlier effective date in Feb. 2020.  

           So, I do have advice fighting VA for TDIU, they fought and fought and I hung in there and won it all.  

      ADVICE:  Dont count on VA, they could easily throw your fax in the trash.  Follow up!  
    • "Keep in mind that due to the nature of the digestive system, VA would most likely combined your conditions and pay you at the higher rate to avoid pyramiding".    That is one of my main gripes.  They are only listing the GERD with hiatal hernia and ignoring the rest of my gastric issues such as the gastritis which I also had in service.  I included it in my 2007 request for increase and again in 2019.  The info from the civilian dr that stated I had the gastritis with H pylori was not even provided to the examiner in 2007, nor did he have my VA health records. The 2019 request was based on an EGD I had AT THE VA in Jan 2019.   I filed for an increase 6 Mar and they did an ACE on 27 Mar and downgraded to noncompensable on that date.  The only reason I was thinking CUE:  38 CFR § 3.326 - Under Examinations  it states (c) Provided that it is otherwise adequate for rating purposes, a statement from a private physician may be accepted for rating a claim without further examination".  
    • Enough has been said on this topic. This forum is not the proper forum for an attorney and former client to hash out their problems. Please take this offline
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