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I submitted a claim December of last year. My ebenefits account is as follows:

Contentions: hearing loss (New), PTSD to include symptoms of parinoa, anger issue, and irritability (New), anxiety (New), depression (New), sleep disorder ( also claimed as sleep loss) (New), right shoulder pain (New), right knee pain (New), back pain (New), hand injury (New)

Claim Received: 12/12/2013

Claim Type: Compensation
Estimated Claim Completion Date: 12/23/2015 to 09/15/2016

I have been sitting in gathering of evidence since June, with all evidence sent to them by August- yet no movement and still only showing gathering. I have already completed my C&P exams for each contention, as they sent me to VES and did them all pretty fast track. My VA office that I go to is the regional one here in Houston.

Does anyone have any idea of how long of a process this will still be? Does anyone have an estimate on percentages for each contention? The only thing that I am aware went well is my exam for PTSD- the Dr told me that she has no doubt and kept apologizing to me.

Thank you for your insight!

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It is difficult to estimate how long it will be before you receive a decision on your claims because each VA regional office is different and each veteran has different circumstances. Also, when you file claims for multiple conditions, it takes longer than a vet filing for one or two conditions.

You also asked about the percentages for each condition. Without a lot more information on your conditions and the evidence you provided to substantiate those conditions, it would be impossible to give you percentage estimates. Since you know the seriousness of each of your conditions, you can google 38cfr4 and find your conditions in the ratings table. This should give you an idea of what the VA rating officials are considering when reviewing your claims.

With the limited info in your post, I am not sure as to exactly what all you have done in regards to your claims. The following info is offered with that in mind: In your contentions, you listed shoulder pain, back pain and knee pain. Pain by itself is not a ratable condition. You have to claim the condition causing the pain (e.g- spinal stenosis L5-S-1 for the back condition, etc.). On all of your conditions, you must show a nexus or connection to your military service. Usually this is done by providing your SMRs (service medical records) showing you had these conditions in the military and they have continued up until present time as proven by civilian or VA medical records. There are also other ways to connect medical conditions to military service such as presumptive diseases, secondary conditions, etc. JMO

Good luck to you and thank you for your service.

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Ah Ebennies strikes again. I have been guilty of this myself. I think Ebennies is quite a tease and if you fall prey as many of us have you will drive yourself crazy. I would suggest working on counter measures for the denial or lowball rating. I don't want to sound pessimistic but sadly that is a truth for majority of us here. If you did not submitt a FDC it will take longer, also it depends on the Regional office that you are dealing with. All have some theory of how long the claim will take to process. I would gather your rebuttal and evidence together. If you haven't already done so get your a copy of your CFile and Service Medical Records along with any private medical records to confirm the continuity of your treatments. This will be good ammo for your defense. I wish you well. JMHO

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Almost forgot to give you an example I filed a FDC claim with the necessary evidence and my claim is not set to be decided on till Dec of 2016. I filed back this August. It is very difficult to give a general ball park as each Regional Office has a different snail's pace to complete claims.

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I have a similar situation going on as my case has been stuck "in review" for 6 months now and as others have said many times before, it's so "unpredictable" and there are so many varibles that there's no way to know when we will get any movement? The Ebenifts website is notoriously innacurate so there's not much help there until the calim is in the final stages. Most of it depends upon how complex the case is and the VBA rep that gets it? At least from what I'm seeing, the more difficult cases seem to be shifted to the back of the proverbial "pile" as received and get worked when they are being pressured to move older cases along? Then it appears they get rushed thru and denied or defer the more complex contentions or even worst deny claims which sets us up for a long appeal process. Frankly, I don't blame the raters themsleves...they are overtasked and trying to do a good job for us but a huge tsunamia of Agent Organge and similar claims hit the system within the last 5 years. In my case, I work with medical records so I put together a very detailed package with 14 DBQ's already completed for 80% of my contentions. Folks that looked at my package said they've never seen such a claim so detailed with "all" of the evidence provided. My VSO said that they are still show gathering evidence in the system..I said what evidence...it's all been submitted already? However, my mistake was listening to my VSO...who actually did very little at all. When I asked, she said to put absolutely "all" of the contentions in for my first FDC..but I found later that more than 8 contentions puts it in the "slow lane" and I should have split it up to 2 FDCs and submitted the second after the first FDC is completed? I'm an analyst and have done a lot of research on the timelines and relaized that most of the FDC process does not occur as advertised and it comes down mostly to who gets your file and their experience levels as well and their workloads. Patience is very tough for me and I'm learning to be paitent now which is very hard for my A+ active personality.

I just came across the VAWatchdog.com webite and they start off by giving very practicle advice and that is that whatever you/we do..most cases are going to take at least 2 years anyway and anything less is a gift? So they say to settle in an respond when they ask for something and never miss any requirements that are given to you to respond back to them. That said, my best advice if you have not already done so is to order a copy of your C-File via a FOIA and ensure that everthing that you submitted is actually there in the file which will avoid possible appeals later. Unfortunately, this may actually add to your frustration beause a lot of folks find that they acutally have to "battle" their Regional Offices to get it done in a timely manner...some Vets get it first try...others take a couple of years of fighting. Frankly, I worked FOIAs for many years and know the law and processes better than most and I'm still having to work very hard to get my own Regional Office to respond. Recently, they just offerd to let me come down to take a look at what they had in the system for me which is great.... anyway good luck and hang in there...eventually it will go your way....but it's just a long tangling road...good luck..

Edited by rootbeer22
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Thank you to everyone that took the time to respond. As far as what was submitted- I sent seven years of drs notes and every time that I was seen for each condition was listed, as well as medications prescribed. I initially handed the VA an entire copy of my medical records from my time in service. But because this was hundreds upon hundreds of pages, my wife went through and hand selected many pieces to upload as evidence that only showed the different times I went for my knee,shoulder and so on so forth. I also submitted buddy statements in regards to my PTSD and had my employer submit one as well.

I guess this is pretty close to the way it is in the Army and I just need to "hurry up and wait." I am at the regional office in Houston.

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