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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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CptDT

Level of detail in statement of events; MST

Question

I'm putting together a narrative of what happened during my service. There are court martial records, so establishing the events isn't an issue.

My question is how much detail should i provide about my experiences? 

That is, should i detail just the exact events or should i explain what happened during my service that led up to the events as well?

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Make it no more than one page long.  It probably wont get read if its too wordy.  Once, I wrote something and someone put "TLTR" on it.  (Too long to read).  Concentrate your words. 

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I guess its a matter of opinion. When I write something I go into great detail, leave it alone for a few days and start to shorten it... leave it alone again, then fix all the spelling and stuff... my statements usually end up being two -four pages... depending on the issue and events...

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Guest L

I agree with @broncovet More concise statement with just the facts is how I did mine - also with similar evidence. The "event" is already summarized in the Court martial statements. Mine was one- half.

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I recall, somewhere, that the CAVC limits the number of pages.  They just dont want to read on and on rambling by the Veteran about how messed up the VA is.  They are too busy to read a book.  You will probably get a better result with a clear, concise, but brief summary, and not pages and pages of irrelevant details.  Here is what to include:

1.  Date of "in service event", along with names of offender, and possible witnesses.  

2.  Where you were stationed, and where you were at when the event occurred.  

3.  Brief summary, for example, "I was sexually harassed by my supervisor on xx (date) and xy (date).  He stated, "If you dont give in to me, you wont get a promotion".  It was verbal, and no touching.  Or, If you were sodomized, then so state.  You dont need to describe the color of paint on the walls while the act was in progress.  

4.  If you can testify that your friend, "friends name" was also assaulted by the same supervisor, then so state.  

5.  State if you reported the incident, and to who.  

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One piece of advice.  Write the letter in third person or try to keep only to the facts.  I find that when I write letters I tend to get tied up in what happened and explaining my feelings.

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