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Soc Bva Local Hearing?



Got SOC in the mail today .......all denied..... This SOC & form 9 came & a letter for appeal hearing options.

1. request a local hearing w/RO DRO

2. request BVA hearing held by BVA board member visiting locally

3. video conference before a BVA board member telephone/tv...

4. request hearing before BVA Washington DC

Which is the better choice? and how long does each take?

Edited by gwvet90 (see edit history)
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  • HadIt.com Elder

I would ask for the DRO Hearing. I have had good luck with these hearings. In Tampa it usually takes about a year for the DRO. The BVA takes about two years. There are many different opinions on this subject and all are good. I think the time limits to get a hearing are different at different VARO's. I would say the DRO can be more of a crap shoot, but it is quicker and their are no remands. You can do your NOD and ask for the DRO Hearing. You can also send in the Form 9 and write on it that you want a DRO Hearing.

If you lose before the DRO you can still ask for a BVA Hearing. My preferrence is to stay local and just bang away at the VA with new evidence until they give you what you want.

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I agree with John- in the denial they tell you why they denied-

you will have time before the DRO hearing to uncover more evidence to support your claims- or you could consider an independent medical opinion-

The BVA looks at the same evidence as the DRO is supposed to consider so to me it could well save you much time to ask for the DRO hearing and do all you can to get more evidence to support your claim.

I got a denovo DRO (sameo sameo- verbatim) review in 2005 but filed the claim in 2003.

Your RO might be faster then that.

The BVA is made up of lawyers who actually read the evidence-the BVA makes good decisions but what I see there at the BVA is that-in granted claims- the veteran had supplied significant evidence to award.Or at least the veteran balanced the scale for Benefit of Doubt. Once in a while I see something at the BVA that makes me angry- for ecample one vet had 4 IMOs to support his claim and the RO STILL denied. The BVA granted the claim.

If the medical evidence is lacking- it makes no difference whether you go DRO or BVA -in my opinion-

and the VA gives every claimant enough keys in their decision to understand what evidence they need.

Do you have a vet org to represent you if needed at a DRO review?

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No, we do not have a rep...

The RO totally disregarded what their C&P examiner diagnosised....

The RO sent him for a 2nd C&P - (his 1st was done by a NP & was very inadequate.)

I got a copy of his C&P reports. The 2nd C&P examiner that they sent him to diagnosed him with "Irritable Bowl, Chloracne, memory loss of unknown etiology & arthritis foot & back. We have several claims in, this is an example of 1 claim -

we NOD and ask for rating to be 30% w/diarreha - he is at 10% it is the only thing they have s/c him for so far.

The RO denial for higher rating says "the Dr made that diag. based on inaccurate health history from you."

They basically call me a lier throughout most of the "decessions".

This was their Dr & they chose to disregard & discredit his diagnosis.

I very firmly believe this is a retalitory decession & abuse of their power.

After their 1st decession I wrote a fairly mean letter asking a superior to look at my case because they screwed up. (obviously this was a mistake on my part.....)

example - They use that " I didn't claim diarrhea on my SS app & conclude that I don't have it" .

They totally ignored the medical documentations of my complaints.

Yet they do use every time that I went to the VA or any Dr/ form etc & didn't complain about diarrhea to again say that I don't have it because I didn't complain about it every single time.

Aren't they supposed to help prove the claim? They are litterly taking every single chance they can to find evidence to try to disprove my claim. I don't know what to do here?

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  • HadIt.com Elder


Yes, the VA will do go on a hunt through all your records to find one thing you or your doctor has said to deny a claim. The way you get around this is to get an IMO and have your doctor shoot down the exact reasons why the VA denied your claim. Your IMO is going to contradict and challange the VA on every point they used to deny your claim. This is about the only way to beat these guys. I did it this way, and I think this is how most here have beaten the VA at that game. They used my own doctor against me by taking half a sentence out of context to deny unemployability even though my doctor said I was IU. I had to pay for an IMO to get that right.

Remember, anything you say to the VA doctors may end up in print in your records. The stuff that supports your claim and the stuff that is ammunition to deny your claim can end up in your records, so be careful what you tell them. Any records like from SSA can be used against you so be sure what you give them supports your claim.

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Thank you for your responses,

I think in our case we are leaning towards going with BVA local office (option 3).

The more I've thought about it today, I have to agree with fla-viking - for our RO it feel like a dead end.

If they would go to the extent of discrediting their own C&P Dr's & dispute his diagnosis - which I know is against their rules (making medical judgements) , just so they could deny a higher rating, I don't think I have a chance with them.

I know it will be a long wait with the BVA - but I can't see how a DRO would change their minds now - this was their decession on my 1st NOD - so they have had 2 chances already.....

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  • HadIt.com Elder


I wasted 4 years with the rating board and the dro process and none of my medical records from 1965- 1979 were even considered.

I went for my first C&P examination and all was fair and above board with a more likely than not.

I am guessing the Va couldn't handle this and sent me for a board of two for a denial as that is what I recieved.

I went to the BVA with the advice of the National Level of the American Legion.

I was remanded to the AMC and have been there 5 months and they are making a complete investigation of my claim, as my medical records were twisted and turned, just as yours were.

If the Va cannot find anything in your records to deny your claim, they may as in my case, fabricate to give you the diagnosis they wish.

Go on to the BVA and not waste your precious time.


Edited by Josephine (see edit history)
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