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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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    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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Moving during claim process and other questions


Question

Hello all,

Let me start by saying thank you in advance for any help or information provided.

Quick backstory:

The first time I filed was in May of 2012(I lived in El Paso, Tx at the time), it was for PTSD, bursitis in hips, carpal tunnel, and a slew of other joint problems, however life happened and I missed a C&P exam that I was unaware of and the claim was denied at the beginning of 2013. I understand that this is my fault, but I did learn that the VA found nothing in my army records to justify a claim for any of the physical problems.

The second time I filed was in Feb of 2015(I lived in Tacoma, Wa at the time), it was for PTSD. I had a C&P thru QTC at the beginning of APR 2015 and attended, however during the C&P the doc diagnosed me with major depression and anxiety rather than PTSD. Also during that C&P I was made aware that the dates for one of my deployments was incorrect and did not match the stressors I had listed and thus he did not recommend a service connection and I was denied at the end of APR 2015. It should also be noted that I received no diagnosis or treatment prior to during the claim process(I still had no idea how the VA worked and was under the impression that I needed to be service connected.) Of note on this claim I attempted to use a VSO thru DAV, however when I went to the office I was given booklet titled "Federal Benefits for Veterans Dependents and Survivors" and the representative highlighted the address of the vet center near me and the ebenefits website instructing me that I needed to file the claim there.

In JAN 2018 after a low point I finally went to the American Lake VA office to see what treatment was available to me. This is when I discovered I qualified for no copay visits and partial copay of medication. I went through the intake exam at the behavioral health clinic there and have been in individual counseling sessions almost weekly as well as attending a few of the group counseling programs offered. I have also been put on various medications to combat the anxiety, depression, and insomnia. Since starting the sessions I have been diagnosed with chronic severe PTSD, chronic severe MDD, chronic severe anxiety, and chronic severe insomnia.

My third and current claim I put in on 02/27/2018(I live on Joint Base Lewis-McChoord, WA). It is for PTSD, MDD, anxiety, insomnia, as well as an application for TDIU. I listed the MDD, anxiety, and insomnia as secondary to the PTSD. I included my DoD service records and my DoD payment records to show that the dates of the deployment on my DD214 were incorrect. I uploaded my medical records from the VA American Lake office just in case there was going to be any issues for them to obtain them, they were reviewed and accepted on 04/04/2018. I had the C&P in MAR 2018, while there the doc said he was recommending all issues be service connected. I filled out the 21-4192 Request for Employment Info on 04/25/2018 the best that I was able and added an attachment to it explaining that my last employment was over 8 years ago and the reasons why I haven't been employed. On 05/03/2018 I submitted a 5103 Claim Decision Request.

Other Info:

In FEB 2018 I requested my military medical records, when I received them the only document there was the medical exam from MEPS, the one you do prior to joining. However while in service I was treated for bursitis over a period of two years(physical therapy and medication) I had the occasional trip to sick call, and at one point had an in grown toenail removed.

I filed my current claim as a new claim, however they reopened my 2015 claim instead.

My ETS was in FEB 2007 after being extended 7 months due to deployment.

I spent my entire time in the military at Fort Hood, TX as part of the 4th Infantry Division(the division has since relocated to Fort Carson, CO)

Questions:

Q. Is there a way to obtain the medical records that are missing from my file so that I am able to claim the bursitis and joint issues?

Q. I am planning to move from JBLM, WA to somewhere in Iowa(Wife's decision) at the end of AUG 2018. This will change my regional office. Will it effect my claim and what do I need to do to ensure my claim doesn't disappear?

Q. Will them reopening my older claim instead of accepting a new one have any effect, beneficial or not?

Q. Should I request my C-File now or wait until the claim is complete?

Q. Does contacting the 800 number or using IRIS to check claim status affect my claim in any way? (I'm curious where it's at because it has passed the estimated date, and the last date it seems anything was done is 04/04/2018 when they reviewed medical records.)

 

Thanks you again for any info or suggestions able to be given.

T

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Q. Is there a way to obtain the medical records that are missing from my file so that I am able to claim the bursitis and joint issues?

Yes, there are several.  Ask the VAMC's where you were treated, ask your home VAMC (they may havE BEEN TRANSFERRED THERE), let the VA find them (ask for a copy of your cfile), or contact the JPRS.  

Q. I am planning to move from JBLM, WA to somewhere in Iowa(Wife's decision) at the end of AUG 2018. This will change my regional office. Will it effect my claim and what do I need to do to ensure my claim doesn't disappear?

Make sure VA has your new address both VA's:  VHA and benefits.  Check ebenefits for your C and P exams, too.  

Q. Will them reopening my older claim instead of accepting a new one have any effect, beneficial or not?

Yes, its beneficial to you, as that would mean more retro, if awarded.  

Q. Should I request my C-File now or wait until the claim is complete?

Request it now.  You are flying blind until you do.  

Q. Does contacting the 800 number or using IRIS to check claim status affect my claim in any way? (I'm curious where it's at because it has passed the estimated date, and the last date it seems anything was done is 04/04/2018 when they reviewed medical records.)

No.  Contact the 800 number or IRIS should not affect your claim, except that you MIGHT rattle a cage and get some work done on it, especially if you get a great employee.  

 

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Tomas ,

If its been a few weeks since your C&P Exam Go

check with your VBA (Veterans Benefit Administration)at your VAMC before you move.

just  go to the window  the clerk will ask you what you need and just tell them you need to see a VSO to make a copy of your last C&P Exam......>you will sign in & have a seat  and they will call you back to visit with the VSO.

They can pull the QTC Exam up on their computer and make you a copy.

be sure and ask the VSO to give you all exam copies.  the ones that you want.

Unless things have changed I did this about 4 years ago.

Edited by Buck52
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Thanks for the response, some followups

1.  Q. Is there a way to obtain the medical records that are missing from my file so that I am able to claim the bursitis and joint issues?

      Yes, there are several.  Ask the VAMC's where you were treated, ask your home VAMC (they may havE BEEN TRANSFERRED THERE), let the VA find them (ask for a copy          of your cfile), or contact the JPRS

      to clarify the medical records I want to obtain are from when I was in service and they were not in my records(only thing in those was the medical exam from MEPS) that I            requested from St.Louis, so not VA. I have been out of the military over 10 years and the Unit I was with has relocated to a new post(Fort Hood to Fort Carson). I don't even          know where to start looking at this point.

2. Check ebenefits for your C and P exams, too. 

     My C&P were done through a contractor (QTC) and are not available through ebenefits, myhealthevet, or anywhere that I know of as far as I understand. Is there a way to               get them that I am unaware of?

 

Thanks Again,

T

Edited by ThomasGray
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Update: The VA finally finished with my claim and I was awarded 100% scheduler for PTSD, however not P&T(I assume this is because I'm 36) and said I would be re-evaluated in 2020.

I just want to say thanks to everyone who contributes here, the answers to my own questions and the answers to questions others have asked helped me quite a bit.

Thanks,

Thomas

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