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InfantryB4

IU, STD and the Vet Center!

Question

Hello all,

Forgive me if this has been addressed before.  I feel like I have been reading forums and articles forever and not come across this. 

Currently I am rated 80%.  70% of that being PTSD.  I have been seeing a therapist at the Vet Center for a few months now.  She has been telling me I should not be working.   Recently, we focused a bit more time on the IU aspect during a session.  She doesn't really know much about the process involved but says she's more than willing to write a letter stating my issues and I should not be working.  Also she said I should put in for short term disability through my employer while I wait the for the IU decision. 

 I have all sorts of struggles at work, reliability, attitude, anxiety and just generally being around other people. I'm already on the radar and feel like I could be fired at anytime.  The VA psychologist I seen for my C&P this past April noted the struggles I have at work but stopped short of saying I shouldn't be working.   I have not been seeing a psychologist or psychiatrist.  Just the Vet Center therapist. 

So,  my questions  are:

Does a Therapist recommendation hold any weight as evidence or do I need one from an psychologist or psychiatrist?

Can I apply for IU while on STD from my employer?  or is that considered still working?

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Posted (edited)

My suggestion is you apply for an "increase".  Its possible you get increased to 100 percent.  

While I realy sympathize with your plight, applying for TDIU while you are working probably isnt gonna fly, so you should wait until you DO lose your job, however, your short term disability may suffice.  

Do you have other issues?  Apply for those, also if you do.  

That is a good question regarding the "therapist", noting that not all C and p exams are done by doctors.  I have no idea the level of expertise of your therapist.  

You can certainly submit that letter, along with her CV and see if it will fly.  Medical evidence needs to be "comptent to make said opinion" not necessarly an MD.  If your therapist is an "expert witness"..considered an expert in her/his field, that is important.  

S

Edited by broncovet

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4 hours ago, InfantryB4 said:

Hello all,

Forgive me if this has been addressed before.  I feel like I have been reading forums and articles forever and not come across this. 

Currently I am rated 80%.  70% of that being PTSD.  I have been seeing a therapist at the Vet Center for a few months now.  She has been telling me I should not be working.   Recently, we focused a bit more time on the IU aspect during a session.  She doesn't really know much about the process involved but says she's more than willing to write a letter stating my issues and I should not be working.  Also she said I should put in for short term disability through my employer while I wait the for the IU decision. 

 I have all sorts of struggles at work, reliability, attitude, anxiety and just generally being around other people. I'm already on the radar and feel like I could be fired at anytime.  The VA psychologist I seen for my C&P this past April noted the struggles I have at work but stopped short of saying I shouldn't be working.   I have not been seeing a psychologist or psychiatrist.  Just the Vet Center therapist. 

So,  my questions  are:

Does a Therapist recommendation hold any weight as evidence or do I need one from an psychologist or psychiatrist?

Can I apply for IU while on STD from my employer?  or is that considered still working?

I concur with broncovet regarding your questions.  However, I know as a matter of fact that you’ll get denied IU if you’re still working.  They’ll ask you that question on the VA Form.  Answering yes to it is a sure kick out.  The best medical opinion is from an MD that will write an opinion on the condition(s) for which you seeking IU.  Broncovet is right about requesting an increase.  Especially, if you’re working or even on STD with your employer.

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Wow, when I read your post I showed my wife and said, who does this sound like? I am going through the exact same thing as you are! I’m right in the middle of applying for STD and have until Friday to get it done! I have my psychologist and psychiatrist backing me up on my STD and hope that they will go the extra mile on my application for TDIU after my STD and LTD run out or if they deny me And I get let go from my job. I’ve been doing my job for 20 years and most of it in pain. I’ve been suspended 3 times in the past 6 months and am on the chopping block also, so hang in there!! May I ask how old you are? I’m asking because I’m 56 and figure age may play a factor in everyone’s decisions. Have you thought of reaching out to vocational rehab at the VA for their opinion? I’ve heard that there opinion has a lot of weight when it comes to TDIU! Maybe someone will correct me if I’m wrong! It’s like being stuck between a rock and a hard place. If we loose our jobs we loose our insurance for our families! If we’re still on the company’s payroll we can’t apply for anything!! What the heck??? Like I said, just hang in there and pray about it a lot!!! 

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Posted (edited)

The VA will consider therapy notes as long as a Qualified Phyischristist  signs off on her notes.

(My dillma is my therapist has a Master Degree in social behavior but she is not a VA Phyischristist ) 

however VA Psychiatrist   Are  used more for prescriptions of PTSD Medications and Opinions.

So same goes here too the therapist will need a qualified VA Phychristrist to sign off on her notes too. 

but yes you can use your therapist notes as credible evidence in your claim. as a L.C.S.W

IF YOUR STILL WORKING AND YOUR EMPLOYER LETS YOU GO...YOU NEED TO GET INTO VA Voc- Rehab  VR/E program, they will test you and try to help you find a job that you can do, if the can't  then the Rehab counselor should write you a letter stating its not feasible to retrain this veteran at this time due to his S,C, Disability's.

that letter is gold When Applying for IU.

Edited by Buck52

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This kind of shows the flaws in the VA.  You get to the point where you can no longer work, then apply for benefits, and, sure enough 5 to 12  years later (after a BVA appeal) and you get your retro and benefits.  They deliver it to your new "home" which is a shopping cart under a bridge, just to show you how much VA cares for its Veterans.  They may even pay you retro on dependents, up until your wife divorced you for being unable to provide for a family home, of course.  

A few years ago, someone pointed out that VA should just pay Vets..a couple weeks after they apply, "assuming" they will be approved.  IRS does this on an even more massive scale.  They send you your tax refund check, then come after you later if its wrong.    This lady pointed out most Veterans, if they persist in appeals long enough, will eventually be awarded Vet benefits.  Its rare when a Veteran applies at VARO, denied, appeals to BVA, denied again, appeals to CAVC  denied again, and appeals to federal circuit, and denied again.  I will estimate of the millions of Vets who apply, only a handful will be denied again and again, all the way to the Federal Circuit.  It would be much fairer to just pay those Vets and come after those who were frauds.  I do think its a good idea to have proof of service, with a DD214, which is mostly required anyway, before payment.  

      If the IRS can do this (pay first) for its citizens, can someone explain how Vets deserve LESS?  Vets, upon completion of military service, should be "super citizens" and get more benefits faster than citizens who did not serve.  

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