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Form 21-4138




When I was with the DAV, they always sent my evidence to VARO with this form in support of the claim.

(I sent the evidence too on my own- just in case)I never saw this form until I got a copy of my c file.The DAV 4138s were in it.

Since those days not all claimants used this form- as it is usually prepared by their Vet rep or NSO-

BUT- in the 3 years I thought my vet rep was supporting my claim (NYSDVA) he had never sent the VA any 21-4138 at all-but my new (NYSDVA) vet rep does.

There is no regulation or direction (haven't seen this in the VBM either but maybe they advise this too)

that a claimant has to attach a 4138 to any new submissions of evidence.

But now men and women- I think this is how I got Screwed-my former vet rep- for some reason -prepared 4138s for many claimants (maybe all )but not for me (and like a dope I was helping him with some claims he had- and I never checked to see if he was actually supporting my evidence-his contact at the RO didnt even know they were on my POA when I got my DRO review)

As I look back- it seems he took deliberate steps not to help me---there was hardly anything in my file at his office- none of my claims were there either-and I sure complained to his boss.

I am thinking now that maybe this 4138 is what triggers the VA-in many cases- to actually read the evidence that is attached to it as it stands out more than a letter from a veteran with attachments and most often it comes from the POA.

For years I thought that only POAs used this form-but I don't see anywehere that says a claimant cant use it too.

At least my new vet rep has sent in 3 or 4 in the past few months in my behalf.

For 3 years I guess it looked to the RO that my POA had no belief in my claim as that other guy never sent even one in.

ROs are skimming over our stuff so fast that maybe this form is what it takes for them to pull out the evidence and read it-

from now on-if I need another IMO- I already contacted a doc for that and will send the 4138 with it- even though my vet rep will too.

Do many of you use this 4138 as a cover sheet when you send them more evidence?

Or does your SO or vet rep?

Edited by Berta (see edit history)
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I use the 21-4138 for just about everything I've submitted in the past 10 or 12 years. In fact many times I get paperwork back from St. Pete VARO and they have attatched a 21-4138 to it stating if there's not enough room I could make copies or write on the back.

St.Pete VARO is great at sending those to me ---------------



Edited by carlie (see edit history)
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Carlie- Yeah-----I hear you on that!

Brandy -I never got a proper VCAA notice since January 2003.

I got a generic form Important Reply Requested but nothing specific as to what they needed.I responded with the IMOs they had still failed to address. I received no election notice either.

Jangrin posted an actual proper VCAA notice and then I knew they didn't send me anything like it.

I found a widow's claim at the BVA remanded in 2006 and the BVA said the widow did not get a specific statement as to what she needed to support her claim-in her VCAA letter-such as getting an independent medical opinion-

I had just obtained my third IMo and sent it to them but this one also was sent with a 4138 by my vet rep.

They did promise me 2 VCAA letters on my CUES but I pointed out to them CUEs dont get VCAA letters.

A proper VCAA letter shows that they actually had to read the claim to determine what evidence was still lacking.

I dont think the VARO read my claim at all until they got it back from the BVA in Sept.

I asked BVA to remand due to fact that none of my medical evidence was addressed, I attached a third recent IMO, and I stated that they had violated the VCAA as my files would reveal, their VCAA letter was deficient-by not specifying what I still needed to send.

I got the remand very quickly.

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Guest rickb54


You said, " I am thinking now that maybe this 4138 is what triggers the VA-in many cases- to actually read the evidence that is attached to it as it stands out more than a letter from a veteran with attachments and most often it comes from the POA."

I strongly disagree with your assesment!

I have never in over my 20 years submitted any of my claims on a 21-4138. And just for myself I have requested increased ratings or inital claims exactly 39 times. Of those 39 times I have won ever claim except one than remains on Appeal since 2004, and two waiting DE Novo appeal since 2006. I have also lived in five different states over the last 20 years, so it is apparent to me that a 21-4138 is not necessary.

The US Government has a form for everything, but I do not believe there is any legal requirement requiring their use.

As a DAV service officer, I used to give out examples of how to submit a claim. My examples were typed on plan bond paper, with the veterans name and claim number on the top of every page, on the bottom of the last page was a statement that read: I certify that these statements are true and correct to the best of my knowledge, and then a place for signature and date. While I did pass out 21-4138 as a DAV service officer, I never advocated their use, in fact I advocated against the use of a 21-4138 because it was so much eaiser to sit at computer and type up a claim using MS Office.

anyway my experience and my humble opinion

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I've used the 4138 for everything since my first award. I think that you get a chance to outline the attached information. I've used it for increase to 30%, 50%, 70% TDIU & for 100% Agent Orange for Prostate Cancer.

Recently I used it for a friend that went from Pension to 100% P & T. I know that I used it for 3 other vets that are now 100%. I usually type out the text on Word & do spell check & then write it on 4138 in BLACK INK. Never used anything but black ink since my Air Force days.


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Interesting info here-

Rick- I never used one myself for my past claims and when I have helped local vets- I just prepared a letter for them.and Never had a problem with that-

But Don- I see you do use them all the time- guys- I guess I am just trying to figure out some reason why my medical evidence was not addressed at all by the VA- the problem always seems to fall back on the way my first vet rep handled my claim-and whatever really happened at the DRO meeting-

Well- at some point they will actually have to read my evidence.

I even think they want to award on an old CUE claim they re-opened themselves-just so they dont have to acknowledge my IMOs.

My POAs acted like they never even heard of Dr. Bash- they dont see many IM0s at all.And they don't suggest that their claimants get them.

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