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Someone Talk Me Out Of It!?

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stillhere

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Hello well I am finally ready for the big shots in DC at the BVA. I have all my papers in order and planning on either going with a lawyer or not?

I am really having a hard time trying to decide! I have gotten this far basically with the help of this site and one other and also a pretty good state VSO. (he is now retired) Should I give up a 20% fee and go with a lawyer or just wing it myself knowing if I lose I can still appeal to court or try a reconsideration with a lawyer.

Little history Nam vet 69/70 central highlands with paper work showing couple of visit to medic for ear aches and problems with otitis Media. During exam to separate told by medic I flunked my hearing test (whisper test I think) and I had to stay an extra two weeks so they could test me further. I then signed a waiver so I could go home then, back to a exam 3 months earlier which showed 15's all the way across but the ent doctor hand wrote high frequency loss unilateral with otitis media.

I got out in 71 and never looked back even though I knew I was having trouble hearing I was hopping it would not get worse. Well it did, and I went to the VA for help in 1984 but they denied me and I did not appeal. Don't ask me why, just to disappointed and had a lot going on in my life. Ended getting a hearing aide myself and going on with my life. I was 36 I think.

Ran into a friend at AL and I was telling him what I did and he said I should try and get it reopened. I worked on that from 06 to 2013 when suddenly the VA called and had me in for a C&P well the dr. sided with me 100% and wrote a exam that blew away anything that the VA had. I was Very surprised to say the least and when I got my copy of the C&P I knew I would get service connected!

Sure enough the VA granted hearing loss and tinititis but they only retro me back to 2006 the date of my reopen claim. I NODed and still nothing, so now I am at the BVA and really don't want to screw this up.

But do I get a lawyer? What say you ladies and gents??

Stillhere

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Your chances of getting a retro award to 1984 are probably nil but that doesn't mean you shouldn't try. If you don't try you definitely won't win!!!! That being said, you can plan on a long drawn out battle and they may award you 0% back to '84 and 10% from '06. I don't know what your rating was from '06. just sayin . . . I do know that you can win almost any claim w/the VA if you pursue it but won't if you don't. jmo

pr

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I think many claims were denied in the 1980s due to the "not well grounded" bull crap.

This was prior to the VCAA and the 5103 waiver.

It is always possible that they committed a CUE in the older decision ,but the CUE would rest on the medical evidence they had in

1984.

Then again, Nothing is impossible.

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It appears from your 04/23/2014 post that you had a preservice hearing condition that got you a 4F draft rating. I take it your attempting to get a Hearing Rating based on pre existing Hearing condition aggravated by Active Duty, right. Do you currently have a SC Hearing rated @ 0%? When you got your Denial that you appealed, what did the rater say regarding your claim? Any mention of the pre service hearing condition and your current DX being the "natural" progression? What was your MOS and do you have a CIB?

As for the Attorney, you're getting short, how good do you feel about repping yourself or using a VSO Appeals Specialist? If you got the Bilateral rating, what kind of retro are you looking at. Legal Eagles go about 20% of your Retro, I guess some Vets agree to 30%. With that said, would 20 or 30% of your retro come to $6K+? That would be about 20 billable attorney hrs. If retro isn't large enough, you might have a difficult time with a fee based legal representation. Exactly what type of BVA Hearing are you waiting for?

Semper Fi

Gastone

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  • HadIt.com Elder

It's actually 20% plus "reasonable expenses". The reasonable expenses come out of the veterans pocket.

Still, that's better than the 50% common in some civil suits only if and when they win.

Some lawyers include the expenses in the 20%, others don't. The EAJA? (Equal Access to Justice Act) also can be a factor.

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THE CLAIM IS NEVER OVER UNTIL THE VETERAN SAYS SO... CAN YOU OUTLAST THEM IS THE QUESTION!!!

A claim can go all the way to the supreme court if need be, and if they shoot it down, you can go get more evidence and start afresh!!

A tiger cant kill an elephant in one day, but if he bites him every day for a week he can take him down... this is the midset you must have. try to keep doing something productive to help your claim, and be relentless.

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I am always thinking ahead. The way I see this if it were me. Why take a knife to a gun fight. I have a NOD right now and have requested a informal dro hearing. If it goes beyond that and I end up going to bva I'm going for a hired gun. I know my limatations.

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