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A 100% Single Mental Health Rating And Legally Working A No No


pacmanx1

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Total occupational and social impairment, due to such symptoms as: gross impairment in thought processes or communication; persistent delusions or hallucinations; grossly inappropriate behavior; persistent danger of hurting self or others; intermittent inability to perform activities of daily living (including maintenance of minimal personal hygiene); disorientation to time or place; memory loss for names of close relatives, own occupation, or own name. 100%

I started a new post because I have seen a lot of post in reference to being rated 100% for a Single Mental Health Condition and working. The fact is according to the criteria above. A veteran cannot legally work and be paid the 100% rate at the same time. The reason being is that the veteran would have to claim (put in writing that he or she is having these symptoms and these symptoms are persistent). I even read that someone had checked with HR and HR said they were OK but that is not true if the person is/was 100% scheduler for any type of mental health disability alone. If the person is/was 100% combine with both physical and mental health disabilities he or she would be legal but not with a single 100% mental health disability. The veteran would also have to claim that these symptoms are persistent to his/her treating doctors and any C & P exams. If I am wrong off or just crazy please correct me.

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Pete, thanks for the info, and you are right, there are a lot of Vets on here with 100% Mental Ratings and still want to work. Not worth traveling down that Slippery Slope for me. Thanks again and hope you have a good weekend

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I agree with the above opinions regarding a 100% rating solely for a mental health disorder.

However, in regards to the comments regarding a 100% rating which is part mental health disorder and part physical disability, I would add if the veteran is receiving IU (regardless of the rating breakdown of mental or physical) they could only work as long as the work is not considered substantially gainful employment. The employment must be considered marginal employment. I still believe veterans rated as IU are taking a serious risk of losing IU status and/or a rating reduction if they work as a definition of what is considered marginal work would be debatable. JMO

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Here is where a lot of veterans get messed up with TDIU. The op had nothing to do with TDIU, I did not mention it at all, it was for scheduler ratings only. For some strange and confusing reason some TDIU veteran's think that they can draw that 100% rating and continue to work. Which according to the 38 C. F. R. part 4.16 they can but the problem is VA, IRS, SSA and other agencies are keeping tabs/watch on how much the veteran earns and claims on his/her taxes. It is just not worth the hassle, I bet a lot of veterans lose their TDIU because they continue to have marginal employment. The real heartache would be losing it and fighting VA and trying to get it back.

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I can only speak fro myself when I say ou can be 100% scheduler rated and still work. If your rating was to say total and permanent then it would be the same thing as the mental health rating for 100%. If you did deeper into the regs you will find that the rating is based of how it would effect a person on average. It will effect a vet in different ways that wont exactly be the same for everyone. Most people just take the 100% rating criteria into account when you have to look at the whole picture. If they insist on a person rated 100% not be able to work they should make it that case for anything that puts you at 100% whether physical, mental, or physical and mental together. it just depends on how you interrupt it.

According to the rating you should not have any social contact with anyone either. If you read it that way then you should not be married or have a single friend. Saying hi to someone would be a social act or volunteering at the VA is a social thing too.

§4.15 Total disability ratings.

The ability to overcome the handicap of disability varies widely among individuals. The rating, however, is based primarily upon the average impairment in earning capacity, that is, upon the economic or industrial handicap which must be overcome and not from individual success in overcoming it. However, full consideration must be given to unusual physical or mental effects in individual cases, to peculiar effects of occupational activities, to defects in physical or mental endowment preventing the usual amount of success in overcoming the handicap of disability and to the effect of combinations of disability. Total disability will be considered to exist when there is present any impairment of mind or body which is sufficient to render it impossible for the average person to follow a substantially gainful occupation; Provided, That permanent total disability shall be taken to exist when the impairment is reasonably certain to continue throughout the life of the disabled person. The following will be considered to be permanent total disability: the permanent loss of the use of both hands, or of both feet, or of one hand and one foot, or of the sight of both eyes, or becoming permanently helpless or permanently bedridden. Other total disability ratings are scheduled in the various bodily systems of this schedule.

§4.10 Functional impairment.

The basis of disability evaluations is the ability of the body as a whole, or of the psyche, or of a system or organ of the body to function under the ordinary conditions of daily life including employment. Whether the upper or lower extremities, the back or abdominal wall, the eyes or ears, or the cardiovascular, digestive, or other system, or psyche are affected, evaluations are based upon lack of usefulness, of these parts or systems, especially in self-support. This imposes upon the medical examiner the responsibility of furnishing, in addition to the etiological, anatomical, pathological, laboratory and prognostic data required for ordinary medical classification, full description of the effects of disability upon the person's ordinary activity. In this connection, it will be remembered that a person may be too disabled to engage in employment although he or she is up and about and fairly comfortable at home or upon limited activity.

I would also like to add by the way some look at the definition below then if you have a social relationship then you are violating the rating and should be reduced. So if you are married or say hi to someone or have any kind of social activity then you should be rated below 100%.

38 C.F.R. § 4.130, DC 9411
General Rating Formula for Mental Disorders:

Total occupational and social impairment, due to such symptoms as: gross impairment in thought process or communication; persistent delusions or hallucinations; grossly inappropriate behavior; persistent danger of hurting self or others; intermittent inability to perform activities of daily living (including maintenance of minimal personal hygiene); disorientation to time or place; memory loss for names of close relatives, own occupation, or own name …………………..100%

I pasted the link to the site with the info below.

http://www.ecfr.gov/...38#se38.1.4_110

Edited by vet201060 (see edit history)
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  • HadIt.com Elder

100% impaired to their standard, which is not the same as total lack of function or ability. If I take a math test that requires Me to count to ten by 2s, and I count by 5s, I chunked the test. I can still count, however, just not to the arbitrary standard.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I get what you are saying, but the reg does not say that so until they patch it up, or vets start foregoing benefits on principle it will continue

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  • HadIt.com Elder

The key is "is it worth losing your benefits" (perhaps for life) and going to jail, besides. They have prosecuted and won against claimants who have worked while receiving either TDIU or a 100% mental rating. One guy worked in his wife's bar. Had to pay back the money(about $250k) and do about 4 yrs prison time. If you are truly disabled, take the money and forget working. If not, forgo the 100% rating and work and let a truly disabled vet get what s/he deserves. jmo

pr

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I agree that it is not worth considering.

Many years ago here (when my email was open) a disgruntled spouse of a vet on either 100% or TDIU, told us here that he was working at a good job and also getting TDIU or 100% ,I think solely for a MH disability and everyone replied he should not be working.

Then she emailed me with a long rendition of how much money he had and she wasn't getting any of it (I guess they were separated or divorced). She asked me who, at VA he "could be 'turned in to".

I replied that she needed a lot of proof before she attempted to do that. And then she said, "No I cant do it, you can do it "

and was going to give me his SSA # and C file number.That is around the time I closed my email addy here...

too much crap like that.....

There is no way I would get involved with what she had in mind.

My point however here is that any TDIU or 100% (in my opinion) can often cause animosity when relatives, friends and neighbors

start to wonder why you get SC ,because you might not "look " disabled at all.

Working, even at a marginal job can open the door for others to question your SC, if they know it is TDIU or 100%.

But this applies only to MH ratings.

Lets face it, former VA Secretary Max Cleland and former VA Central office lawyer ,Lewis Puller ( Chesty's son) were totally physically disabled by their service but managed somehow to work.

They might even have received 100% VA comp legally as well for their Physical disabilities.

Lewis Puller had PTSD too and committed suicide some years ago.But he probably never formally claimed the PTSD.

.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Okay, but the other side is if one who is not quite right of mind forgoes

benefits because they think they are fine but aren't? Many of us want to work if we can. We can say "work and don't take the money...." but ultimately a mental disorder makes people think they can do all kinds of stuff they shouldn't. I guess, short answer is, don't defy your docs unless you have a lot of proof, our opinions. If they say you are broke, be broke, and take up painting or book writing and enjoy that you can.

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They know I work and said it is completely lawful for me to work. They denied me tdiu due to working and granted me 100%. I understand I will probably down graded if I contnue to work. The same goes for any disability. If a vet was say 50% physical and 50% mental and it computed to 100% and they received P&T then they should not be able to work either if you take the TOTAL & Permanent in consideration. Total is complete, absolute, all. That would mean the same by majority of the standards of the opinions on Hadit. I totally respect your input but I have to disagree. I do agree if you continue working and have no trouble then you are taking a chance of losing your benefits. I am gonna fight to keep my job and if it doesnt work out I will just be broke and have my VA disability and hopefully Federal and SS disability too. I still dont think we should give up without a fight

My disabilities to hurt my income and having the disability pay is to make up for that. I have been told that by my psych Dr, a few VSOs and by myself after reading the regs. I have been on Leave without pay for over a month now and the only thing keeping my family going is the 100% rating pay. I just dont want a vet to be discouraged and kill themselve because other vets dont think they deserve THEIR BENEFITS. I am jnot a hater and dont know everyone else's situation either. My job pays over double what the VA gives me so I want to work. I am preparing myself for not being able to work tho. That means changing the budget and living within a smaller income. God has always provided for us financially even when I was worried.

I got really upset when my supervisor and HR talked to me about federal disability retirement. That was horrible and a shock to me. I am told how screwed up I am by all kinds of people and i dont mean in a bad way. I do not see all the negative stuff that others are seeing. Good luck to you all!

Edited by vet201060 (see edit history)
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  • HadIt.com Elder

Nobody can make you take OPM disability retirement unless they go through a process that finds you incapable of working up to an acceptable level. There is a form of non-voluntary disability retirement, but it can be fought especially if your record is good at work. Max Cleland was 100% P&T and he worked as boss of the VA. I worked with a vet who had lost an arm in Vietnam. He drove a fork lift at the USPS. I know that the VA does bend the rules for VSO's who are 100% and who are able to work full time as NSO's. I think what we are talking about is someone who is 100% disabled for a mental condition only. According to the regs and description of that disability the vet should not, nor cannot work full time. That is part of the definition of being 100% for a mental condition. I think to some extent it is not fair. Why is there a difference between physical and mental disabilites? Regarding TDIU I think the regs are very clear. If you have TDIU then you can't work outside some protected environment. If you do work and pay taxes and SSA you are risking just what PR is talking about.

Just about every American of working age wants to work at something. When I lost my career at the USPS I claimed SSD, OPM and TDIU, yet I still wanted to work doing something even if if was just a few hours a day or one day a week. I felt useless and lost. My self esteem was in the toilet. I wanted to sell antiques at a antique mall. Many retired people did it, but I was different than those other retired folks. I was on SSD and TDIU. If I became too successful I knew I would have to make a choice. I was never that successful, and my wife was not ready to take over with me as a silent partner to expand, and buy an action house. I was very frustrated. Now some years later as I approch 65 I am glad I stayed within the lawful bounds. If I could have made a big success without the downside risk I would have given up the SSD and TDIU. I can still buy and sell, but I cannot do the things that a person does who runs a successful small business. I physically can't and I legally can't. However, if I see some collectible object and buy, it and then sell it later that is just a hobby unless I have a shop and pay rent and have staff working for me etc. Is is sort of a fine line but most people can see the line. The VA can see it and IRS and SSA can see it. I buy and sell stock, but that is passive income. I don't run a brokerage house that employees fifty people. Collecting rent on a few houses is one thing, and being an agent to manages ten apartment complexes is something else. The VA and SSD has us by the short hairs. In many ways it is a destructive system to those who have a chance at full recovery. It discourages rehabilitation. For those who have permanent and severe disabilites it is a lifeline. For a 22 year old who gets 100% for a mental condition that can be the worst thing that ever happens to him/her. If the VA would grant 100% while a vet was in school and up until they were successfully making a living that would be a good thing. Back in the day as soon as you showed anything looking like improvement you would be reduced which is a kick right in the &^^%$. The VA used the fact I finished a BA in psychology as a weapon against me for 25 years.

John

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So does it mean if you are 100% for mental disability only that you can not have a wife either? It has total for work and social. P&T are total and permanent disability would mean you should not be able to work by the definition just the same as for the 100% mental condition. The rating is based on the average impairment to income earnings. Just read below and see how you think it is. I see it as based not on the idividual but the average person's impairment to income. Which makes total sense to me. If I am working a job that pays me $9500//month but I have to miss work for my disabilities then that is where the payment from VA reduces the effect my or any other vets disability has on their life. I am very disatracted right now so please understand this may read funny. It is hard for me to get my point across. The way I see it is that you can work unless TDIU and then I think you can work part time earning under poverty. I have not read up on TDIU enough to really say much on the topic. I just know that you can work and be 100% mental but that will also be used against you in getting that rating in the first place.

§4.15 Total disability ratings.

The ability to overcome the handicap of disability varies widely among individuals. The rating, however, is based primarily upon the average impairment in earning capacity, that is, upon the economic or industrial handicap which must be overcome and not from individual success in overcoming it. However, full consideration must be given to unusual physical or mental effects in individual cases, to peculiar effects of occupational activities, to defects in physical or mental endowment preventing the usual amount of success in overcoming the handicap of disability and to the effect of combinations of disability. Total disability will be considered to exist when there is present any impairment of mind or body which is sufficient to render it impossible for the average person to follow a substantially gainful occupation; Provided, That permanent total disability shall be taken to exist when the impairment is reasonably certain to continue throughout the life of the disabled person. The following will be considered to be permanent total disability: the permanent loss of the use of both hands, or of both feet, or of one hand and one foot, or of the sight of both eyes, or becoming permanently helpless or permanently bedridden. Other total disability ratings are scheduled in the various bodily systems of this schedule.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I am 100% schedular and I am that cause one of the main reasons is I cannot work. Unemployability is the shield that protects your rating in my opinion. It definitely is not worth the risk as VA tells you that they check your income as part of your rating.

Its hard enough to get and certainly is not worth the risk. If you want to do something productive volunteer and help others.

Good Luck

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So does it mean if you are 100% for mental disability only that you can not have a wife either? No one is saying that. It has total for work and social. P&T are total and permanent disability would mean you should not be able to work by the definition just the same as for the 100% mental condition. The rating is based on the average impairment to income earnings. Just read below and see how you think it is. I see it as based not on the idividual but the average person's impairment to income. Which makes total sense to me. If I am working a job that pays me $9500//month but I have to miss work for my disabilities then that is where the payment from VA reduces the effect my or any other vets disability has on their life. I am very disatracted right now so please understand this may read funny. It is hard for me to get my point across. The way I see it is that you can work unless TDIU and then I think you can work part time earning under poverty. I have not read up on TDIU enough to really say much on the topic. I just know that you can work and be 100% mental but that will also be used against you in getting that rating in the first place. No, VA can not penalize you for working, what would happen is that you would get a lower rating 30%, 50% or may be 70%. It really depends on what your symptoms are and the symptoms that you claim (put in writing) and tell your treating doctors that you are having.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

In rality, why would anyone consider working if 100% for a MH condition asnd even IU. Now we all know the VA. Even if the law gave vets a loophole to work, is an organization that believes itself to be above all else, would scheme and kanive, twist, misinterpet, and would do anything and everything within its power to cut a vets comp off.

Why would a vet want that to occurr. I know several vets who are IU and got a 1099. The VA reduced them from IU to their percentage.

The bottom line is a veteran needs to use some common sense and once he reaches a certain level, Try not to rock the boat. The VA is a real big boat.

Here is the Law that prevents MH folks from working:

Total occupational and social impairment, due to such symptoms as: gross impairment in thought processes or communication; persistent delusions or hallucinations; grossly inappropriate behavior; persistent danger of hurting self or others; intermittent inability to perform activities of daily living (including maintenance of minimal personal hygiene); disorientation to time or place; memory loss for names of close relatives, own occupation, or own name. 100%

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Mental health is equal like other disabilities.

No - mental health is very different from physical disabilities.

MH is not seen as an obvious disabling condition.

The rating criteria for MH is also quite different as most of it

is subjective versus physical disabilities being objective.

Mental health is not different.

MH is way different than physical conditions.

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Vet201060 said,

can only speak fro myself when I say ou can be 100% scheduler rated and still work.

Reading over the threads again

This is totally different than being rated for a single 100% mental health rating. With your combined 100% scheduler rating you can legally work. I am not sure why you posted and jumped in because the op was about a single 100% mental health rating and not a combined scheduler 100% rating which is two totally and different separate views in the eyes of VA.

of course I am only guessing that you are 100% combined scheduler which you can work. If that is the case. If I am wrong and you are rated 100% for a single mental health rating Total occupational impairment means having no income earnings.

Edited by pete992 (see edit history)
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