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I'm Poking The Bear


NavyWife
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Question

I'm Poking the Bear

Hubby says I'm poking the bear by requesting an increase from VA. He is terrified that by requesting an increase the VA will take away his current rating. I explained to him that the evidence he presented has not changed and his situation has not changed and therefore they can't do that.

He had his appointment today with his private physician to fill out a DBQ. His rating decision was only three months ago so this DBQ will get uploaded into Ebenefits. It is New and Material Evidence and directly addresses the reason they did not give him a higher rating. The rater did have enough evidence to award a higher number 3 months ago, but in their judgment we didn't provide enough evidence, so here we are.

It's being submitted as an Increase -Reconsideration. I'm holding off on using an NOD as a last resort. I surely don't want to go into the appeals process if I can avoid it.

Any advice, thoughts or words of encouragement are appreciated!

Edited by NavyWife
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If his rating decision was three months ago I can't imagine they would downgrade him with new evidence. But who knows....

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"Hubby says I'm poking the bear by requesting an increase from VA. He is terrified that by requesting an increase the VA will take away his current rating."

That is what the VA wants us all to think.

A Reconsideration could certainly work but dont let them try to piss away that NOD deadline.

I actually thought the last reconsideration request I made would produce an award, but I was suffering from an illusion.

They did respond to everything I sent and responded to, making it appear as if they were actually working on the claim...but they weren't.

I filed the NOD within about a week of the deadline.

That claim was set for BVA transfer but the Nehmer Philadelphia RO awarded it...in three weeks.

The claim ( actually 2 claims) had sat at my RO in Buffalo from 2003 to 2011 at that point.

Others here have been far more successful with recon requests.

The claim and recon request I had was a CUE claim. The VA hates CUE claims.I dont blame them for stringing me along.

CUE is a collateral attack.I wanted to go to the BVA. But didnt have to, when Nehmer 2010 came along.

A disability claim recon request ,however, with a current DBQ , and from a Real doctor, is Definitely worth poking the bear!!!!!!

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I think a bearskin rug would look good on your floor. VA bearskin that is, heh, heh. Skin the bear before he skins you. If you went to DVA NSO he will beg you not to ask for an increase. I heard this for years. If you have the evidence then file the claim is what I think. I must have filed 7-8 claims since I got TDIU back in 2001. I won almost all because the evidence was there and I got IME to back me. I would not file a claim just for the hell of it.

John

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Most vets who are receiving their righteous amount of compensation didn't get there in one 'trip' to the VA, Navywife.

It came in increments over years/decades.

So- what you're doing is normal and accepted - and it's time we start makin the VA more afraid of Us. :wink:

You got this. :smile:

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  • HadIt.com Elder

There is a reason why they call him Notorious! What I got took over 35 years and I am still fighting. My shrink told me how they do it for MH conditions. Usually you get maybe 30%. Time goes by and you file for increase. Maybe you get 50% this time. Finally when you can't work any more you get 70%-100% and maybe TDIU or just scheduler 100%.

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This myth is perpetuated by many VSO's, some of which do it because they are lazy. You need to look at the VSO charter. They commit to "cooperate with VA" and, as asknod pointed out, many are compensated by the number of POA's the organiztion fills out.

The VA wants you to live in poverty and accept less.

There are many hoops the VA has to jump through to reduce you. There are rating protections at 5 years, 10 years, and the best is after you have been rated 20 years. 10 years protects "service connection" but not disability percentages, and 5 years or Permanent even offers some protections. That is, after 5 years they have to show your disability "actually improved under ordinary conditions of life" (you can look it up, but that means you are working, since "ordinary people" work, while "disabled" people do not. If you are permanent or over 5 years, your ratings have "stabilized", and the VA has to show sustained improvement vs "episodic" improvement. In other words any body can have a "good day", but did you get well or "actually improve".

Not filing for benefits you really deserve is not "poking the bear" instead its "poking the pooch" if you dont.

Just ask yourself this simple question: You and hubby know each other well. Does he deserve additional benefits? Does he have other conditions that are not service connected, (but should be) or is he 80% and not able to work (due to sc conditions)?

Honesty should prevail here...just tell the truth and you will be fine. Dont fake any doc reports, dont fake any illnesses, dont exaggerate symptoms. Do tell the doc how you feel on the worst day..something like this:

DOC How are you? On Tuesday, I was so sick I could not get out of bed, and my wife had to wait on me hand and foot. I have not worked since November of last year, and that is not good either (not that I could work considering I have PTSD and have xxx and yyy symptoms. (Notice..you tell him what happened Tuesday, or even last week or month...dont tell him you are fine today..tell him about when you were "not fine")

What not to do: Dont tell the doc you are "fine" if you are not. We have been taught not to give our complete medical history to someone who asks, but this does not apply to your VA doc. Do tell him your problems, just dont exaggerate em, and dont tell the doc you are "fine" if you arent.

Edited by broncovet
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