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  • 14 Questions about VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims

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    When a Veteran starts considering whether or not to file a VA Disability Claim, there are a lot of questions that he or she tends to ask. Over the last 10 years, the following are the 14 most common basic questions I am asked about ...
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  • Can a 100 percent Disabled Veteran Work and Earn an Income?

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    You’ve just been rated 100% disabled by the Veterans Affairs. After the excitement of finally having the rating you deserve wears off, you start asking questions. One of the first questions that you might ask is this: It’s a legitimate question – rare is the Veteran that finds themselves sitting on the couch eating bon-bons … Continue reading

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dolfanbls

C&P Exams Results

Question

What type of increase do you think I will get? I am currently rated at 10% for Back, sciatica and depression. I have applied for an increase and unempoyability,

C&P Exam.pdf

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This descriptor is at the 30% level, from the General Rating Formula for Mental Disorders (38 C.F.R. § 4.130):

[X] Occupational and social impairment with occasional decrease in work efficiency and intermittent periods of inability to perform occupational tasks, although generally functioning satisfactorily, with normal routine behavior, self-care and conversation

However, these items, from Section II, Number 3 of the Mental Disorders DBQ, are at generally higher levels:

30%
[X] Depressed mood 
[X] Anxiety 
[X] Suspiciousness 
[X] Chronic sleep impairment 

50%
[X] Disturbances of motivation and mood 
[X] Difficulty in establishing and maintaining effective work and social relationships

70%
[X] Difficulty in adapting to stressful circumstances, including work or a worklike setting 
[X] Inability to establish and maintain effective relationships 
[X] Neglect of personal appearance and hygiene 
[X] Intermittent inability to perform activities of daily living, including maintenance of minimal personal hygiene

You can find the signs, descriptions of functional impairment, and symptoms associated with each disability rating level in the General Rating Formula for Mental Disorders. I attached a Word doc, whcih contains the Rating Formula.

Of course, the RVSR (VBA 'rater') determines your disability rating, but as I understand it, if they assign a rating lower than 70%, in your case, then they need to provide a rationale. It partly depends on your medical records, particularly mental health treatment records, but if they are not dramatically different, in terms of the symptoms and associated problems noted, then I would anticipate an increased disability rating for depression. 

I noticed that she (the C&P psychologist) did not say anything about IU (Individual Unemployability). If the VBA requested information about employability on VA FORM 2507 (the referral form VBA uses to request a C&P from a VA medical center or contractor), then VBA will probably send your exam report back as insufficient and instruct the examiner to answer their question(s) about employability. 

Her diagnosis for ICD-10 code F32.9 is wrong. She listed Depressive Disorder NOS (Not Otherwise Specified), which is a DSM-IV diagnosis. VA instructed C&P psychologists to use DSM-5 beginning on 1 December 2013. The ICD-10 code F32.9 is for Major Depressive Disorder, Single Episode, Unspecified

Although the C&P psychologist's report is not a good one, it looks like the end result will be positive for you. :biggrin:

Thank you for your service and sacrifice for our country @dolfanbls

All the Best,

Mark

General Rating Formula for Mental Disorders.docx

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Thanks for the feedback.

 

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