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Reviewing C-File

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pacmanx1

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It never dawned on me when I went to a C & P exam that more then one of my C & P examiners told me to take care of myself and if I needed anything to return to the VA. In reviewing my C- File that I received I notice a lot of my records are out of order. When I went to a few of my C & P exams the examiners told me that it would take them some time to review my C-File and then showed me a cart that had a bunch of C-Files on it.

When I finally received my C -File from VA it was a case of records that I could not even pick up. I had to slide the box in my house. It was so many documents I did not even know where to begin so I left it alone. A few weeks after I received a CD copy of my C-File from my attorney and it was well over 3000 pages. I recently noticed that my treatment records are out of order. I was told once that I had multiple volumes that made up my C-File but if these records were in different volumes when my claim was rated and the rater did not go through my entire records then they could have definitely miss some pertinent evidence.

It is very important for veterans to get a copy of their C-File and go through it very carefully. I found evidence that VA said I never had and it was in my file all the time. I am currently going through an appeal that been going on for over a decade and I am trying to get a correct effective date. I wish I had all these records years ago, I would be in a better place. Now I have to fight for an EED/Percentage. I hope this post will help some veterans and encourage them to get a copy of their C-File and go through it page by page.

Hope the best.

Edited by pacmanx1
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  • HadIt.com Elder

It is important to receive a copy of your c-file. It is also important that the file be reviewed, in the order that it was received, to check for errors. VA employees make many mistakes and this is just one way to catch those mistakes. jmo

pr

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Vary important advice given above. The VA denied a few contentions during my initial claim saying they did not have any records of treatment in my STRS. I got a copy of my c-file found those records and went from 70 to 90. Good advice given here always double check.

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Well said, Pete. From a practical standpoint, if a person read a page in 3 minutes, this would mean your rater would take 150 hours (or about a month) just to read your file. (3000pages times 3 minutes per page divided by 60 minutes in an hour = 150 hours). Or, to view it another way, most Bible's are less than 3000 pages, and most "Bible reading" programs take a year to read the whole Bible, so this would take your rater a full year to read your file.

We can pretty much see that wont happen. My C file is on CD and its 1500 + pages. I had a C and P exam, in 2007, and the VA never adjuticated the issue even after 8 years. I thought I had remembered a C and P exam, but I looked through my cfile, and there it was:

"The Veterans xxx condition is at least as likely as not due to military service"...the nexus I need.

However, because it took the VA 8 years to process my paperwork (and counting, since it has not been adjuticated, not even the first time), the rater would literally have to read a month to find it.

When I appeal, you can bet that page will be copied and highlighted in my appeal. The VA does not even acknowledge I applied for this benefit!!!!

So, if I never applied, why did the VARO do a C and P exam, on an issue that I have not applied for? Does the VA do C and P exams on everyone, whether or not they apply for benefits???

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Bronco, you are correct. VA either lost my NOD or they ignored it for several years, then my C-File went to BVA and someone said oops look what we missed. I finally won my service connection but now I am fighting the EED/Rating Percentage. Don't be surprise if VA tries to low ball your rating percentage or screw up your effective date. It is good for me that the rating criteria did not change since I originally filed this particular claim.

I think I heard JB say, that it would have went a lot better for VA to take the time and award the claim correctly than have to pay a very nice retro payment. But since VA made me wait all these years, I will take that nice retro payment and use it for good for me and my family.

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pete992

I'm starting to think that one of the most critical elements to a disability claim is to double and triple check the C-file before the claims gets into a postion to be adjudicated? Several months ago, my claim came to a halt when I asked for the C-File via a FOIA. So, I cancelled it and have been worried about the evidence in my claim ever since? Then two months ago, I had a couple of CP exams and was able(or at least I believed so?) to provide SMR evidence to the CP examiners. However, later when I checked with what happened to the SMR records that I gave the doctors - no one can account for them? I must have spoken to 5 people in the process over two weeks at the clinic to try and track them down? Also, when I asked what the SOP was for handling such SMR records...no one knew? Many had been submitted during the original claim but I don't have a guarantee that they were ever added to the package then as well? I've already read where many Vets get denied claims mutiple times until someone a the Vet Appeal Boards -(like you said earlier), says...ooops they were here all along...but two to five years have lapsed before anything was ever done?...Anyway, as long as the "system" offically and legally presumes that all of the records were handled propelry for a claim, it's not likely to improve without a serious review of the processes to fix things....but it's very discouraging to hear the same problems happening over and over again with lost records...I think a lot of it has to do with enough people to do the job in the first place....good luck and godspeed on the rest of your claims...

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Rootbeer,

Keep in mind that my original claim was well over a decade ago. I am trying to be nice when I say that VA lost or ignored the evidence in the original claim but back then, my C-File could not have been more than one volume may be two but not as many as I have now. I know the evidence was there because it is numbered around page 2540 and then it jumps to 3256. We must always keep in mind "The Human Factor", which breaks down to try to close the claim out as soon as possible and if the evidence is not smacking them in their face to deny the claim. Then many years later the system is set up to get the veteran to accept a low ball rating or the claim is denied until the veteran is force to get an attorney and by this time some bean counter has come up with a theory that most veterans will just give up or die.

Edited by pete992
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