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An Awfully Long Wait - Ptsd Claim


MEDIC04

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Hey Gang,

was wondering if anyone could shed some light on why my claim may be taking an unusually long duration. I enlisted in early 2004- 2012 in the Army as a Medic. After a successful 8 year career and 18 months in the sandbox, I was honorably discharged. In early 2013, I filed for a PTSD compensation claim while receiving care at a VA facility. I was diagnosed with PTSD, Anxiety, Hearing Loss, Tinnitus, Vision Loss, Headaches, TBI, Loss of consciousness secondary to Blast injuries from blast within 30 meters, sleep apnea, and a bunch of others. I filed for compensation for all of these, since I had the diagnosis codes attached to my file as active problems, diagnosed in a VA facility. 10 months went by, with no action on Ebennies or via mail from the VA on my claim status, while I was ( and still am) actively receiving care from my local VA facility. As of two months ago, I started receiving requests for records, stressor statements, STRs, and essentially any proof I could manifest. Luckily for me, I have a copy of every set of orders, medical records, After action reviews, Award letters, letters from senior officers, Incident reports, and every other piece of proof the VA could ever possibly ask for. And they received everything they asked for within 3 days. I then went for a C & P exam 4 1/2 weeks ago, and it couldn't have went better. I got the "More likely then not ( greater then 50% likely)" statement for chronic PTSD, TBI, and all of the secondary items I filed for. She also included an extra statement saying that it completely inhibits my day to day life drastically and completely, and the evidence provided was paramount and left no doubts in her mind. Sounds great, right? well, now, 4 1/2 weeks later, my case is still in the gathering evidence stage. Even though they have requested nothing new, and are not waiting on anything from third parties. EBennies says my claim should be done around December of next year. And I don't know why. that's over 2 years on a claim with more evidence then you could fathom. Any thoughts? Did reading this kill enough of your free time? Can you really not believe " Its not Butter"? Any advice, thoughts, kind words, etc. would be appreciated. It felt good to get this off my chest and on "Paper". Its been eating at me for a bit.

regards,

MEDIC04

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I would be surprised to find out the C & P exam covered all of your claimed conditions. If not, you will eventually be scheduled for additional C & P exams for your remaining claimed conditions.

Also, Ebenefits is not a reliable source to check on the current status of your claims. Information on Ebenefits is not updated by the ROs in a timely manner. You may go from gathering evidence to preparation for decision one day and back to gathering evidence the next day. The estimated date for completion is a joke. Ignore it. Also, often Ebenefits will ask for information or evidence which you have already provided. Just make sure you have proof the info or evidence was previously provided.

About the only time I have found Ebenefits useful is for downloading VA letters which might show a change in your rating status before you receive any other official notification. Also, you may find upcoming medical appointments (including C & P exams) in the Health Appointments Schedule on Ebenefits. Sometimes the upcoming C & P exams are posted on the schedule before you receive notification from the VA.

Just try to be patient. With the number of medical conditions you have claimed it takes more time than claims with one or two conditions. Having said that, I would not be surprised that your claims are completed within a couple of months after all the reports from your completed C & P exams are received by your RO. Just my opinion.

Good luck to you and thank you for your service.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I agree with above reply......

Many here are playing the waiting game and as Georgiapapa said, multiple conditions require more C & Ps and more time.

Make sure you always keep copies of anything you send to them by mail and Patience is a virtue when dealing with the VARO.

It sounds to me that you can definitely expect the PTSD award, and the TBI residual award, and hopefully the other conditions as well.but hard to determine the rating.

C & P exam results (if the C & Ps are done at a VAMC) can give you a heads up on what to expect from the raters.

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Thank you Georgiapapa and Berta, It didn't even cross my mind that, since I am claiming so many issues at once that it would take longer then usual. Makes perfect sense. Guess Im just going to have to hurry up and wait, just like everyone else. Thanks again.

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I understand your frustration. I have been in the appeals process since 2008, and have appealed to the board since 2009 and they still don't have my appeal. I applied for an increase because if you look at the VA symptom guidelines I am right in the 70% range according to their own standards. I am changing POA's and see if that helps out any. My current POA has not spoken to me in 2 years.

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