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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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    • This is the latest Compensation & Pension (C&P) Clinicians Guide dated 20180719. The only other one I've seen is dated 2002, including the one on this website and the VA website. I got this from my claims agent, who got it from the VA.

      VA Compensation & Pension (C&P) Clinicians Guide 2 Final Corrected 20180719.pdf
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    • I don’t say thank you enough to all of you...
      You, yes you, are the reason HadIt.com has remained a resource-rich resource. Thousands come each month to read, ask questions, or to feel a sense of community.

      Last month June 2020, we over 50k visitors they viewed over 160k pages. Veterans and their advocates, spouses, children, and friends of veterans come looking for answers. Because we have posts dating back 15 years and articles on the home page, they usually can find an answer or at least get pointed in the right direction.

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    • VA has a special where we can ask questions TODAY, at 3:00 to "people that matter?"  Someone should ask why we can not ask them questions EVERY day, why today only? (This is a big problem with VA..the 800 number often does not give specific answers).  We should have people in VA who "solve Vets problems" like Allison Hickey did a few years ago. 
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    • The 5, 10, 20 year rules...



      Five Year Rule) If you have had the same rating for five or more years, the VA cannot reduce your rating unless your condition has improved on a sustained basis. All the medical evidence, not just the reexamination report, must support the conclusion that your improvement is more than temporary.



      Ten Year Rule) The 10 year rule is after 10 years, the service connection is protected from being dropped.



      Twenty Year Rule) If your disability has been continuously rated at or above a certain rating level for 20 or more years, the VA cannot reduce your rating unless it finds the rating was based on fraud. This is a very high standard and it's unlikely the rating would get reduced.



      If you are 100% for 20 years (Either 100% schedular or 100% TDIU - Total Disability based on Individual Unemployability or IU), you are automatically Permanent & Total (P&T). And, that after 20 years the total disability (100% or IU) is protected from reduction for the remainder of the person's life. "M-21-1-IX.ii.2.1.j. When a P&T Disability Exists"



      At 55, P&T (Permanent & Total) or a few other reasons the VBA will not initiate a review. Here is the graphic below for that. However if the Veteran files a new compensation claim or files for an increase, then it is YOU that initiated to possible review.



      NOTE: Until a percentage is in place for 10 years, the service connection can be removed. After that, the service connection is protected.



      ------



      Example for 2020 using the same disability rating



      1998 - Initially Service Connected @ 10%



      RESULT: Service Connection Protected in 2008



      RESULT: 10% Protected from reduction in 2018 (20 years)



      2020 - Service Connection Increased @ 30%



      RESULT: 30% is Protected from reduction in 2040 (20 years)
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Orthopa02

Does the VA Law Judge normally asked alot of question?

Question

Good afternoon fellow vets, Today was my BVA video conference hearing after 13 years of waiting,  my file was certified with the BVA on 7/7/2015... and my claim was filed Nov 2005 for those wondering about the time line. I have a very challenging case involving multiple discharges with 2 honorable discharges and 1 Big Chicken Dinner for striking an officer. In the beginning the VA merged everything together and tried denying everything placing all my illnesses in the bad period. So I had to fight to have the periods broken up which was suppose to be by government law. ( every time you reenlist, you get a discharge summary)  … about 9 years ago the VA finally recognized all of my discharges... fast forward... in the mist of the VA conveniently overlooking words in my medical records that are positive weight for me and just not evaluating the entire records, I finally had my day to at least move past the regional office and talk to a judge.  First I will say that a video conference is actually pretty good  ( for all those who are not sure about it) , I could see the judge very clearly ( the white of his eyes ) and he could see me and my attorney. He was very nice, nodded his head constantly... according to my attorney, he has only been a Law Judge for around 3 years and doesn't ask a lot of question. Law Judges know how to put their poker face on !!! I didn't know what he was thinking...The conference was definitely not adversarial, very informal but I was on the record after being sworn in, after we got to the big ticket items, PTSD/ Depression , IVDS for my back with 3 years of bed rest, and bilateral knee issues ,( majority the things that were over look or not documented right from the RO ). He started asking a lot of question.. the conference took around 40 minutes and during my post meeting with my attorney, I asked was that a bad thing.. my attorney stated actually no, he believe the law judge was trying to get a clear understanding and it always not a bad thing. I am so nervous after 13 years on fighting for my benefits and starting to let me anxiety get the best of me. What do you guys think? Is it bad thing for a Law judge to ask more questions than usual ? My attorney asked that if the Judge needed  additional information , to wait 30 days before a decision.. is that a bad? ( because other than that it may be remanded back to the RO ). and lastly   why is it that the Law Judges see about 10-20 vets for that one video conference? Of course that's not my field of expertise, however, wouldn't it be confusing remembering whos who. ( I just don't want to be another number, as cliché as that sounds). At the end the judge ask me if I had something to say and I said some things but ended with I would just like to have a fair accurate hearing, he stated that he was not bound by the RO decision and thank you for my service.. is that stand jargon ? Any answers or comments are very much welcome and appreciated....thank you in advance . Be bless  and continued luck to all you VETS !!!

Edited by Orthopa02

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Okay you asked a number of questions.  Let me take a stab at it.  First, let me address a procedural issue.  Even though your hearing is in front of one Administrative Law Judge, he is part of a team that will make the decision.  Included in that team is the Attorney for the Board.  That is why the proceedings are transcribed, and you (or your attorney) will get a copy of the transcript.  (If it goes to your attorney, make sure he gives you a copy for your files.).

As far as the number of questions, I do not think it matters.  I would rather have the Judge ask a question to be able to make a positive decision than leave him ignorant whereby he then rules against your claim.

Yes the Judge no doubt forgets much of what he hears.  That is why the proceedings are transcribed.  In this matter I think the VA system exceeds that of non VA courts.  Go to any courtroom on motion day and the judge will hear hours upon hours of motions and litigants.  All he will have is his/her notes because he/she will not have a transcript.  Those proceedings are recorded, but not transcribed unless and until a party pays for that.  Quite expensive a process, I assure you.

The part about your attorney asking for 30 days is unclear to me.  I think he is asking the Judge give him notice with thirty days to respond if the Judge finds he needs some form of additional information.  That sounds prudent.  Again better to have to provide some additional information that to be denied.

It sounds to me like your hearing was more or less the status quo.  I would not worry because that accomplishes nothing.  The worst case scenario is that you are denied, and you have at least one more appeal to go. 

 

 

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  • Our picks

    • This is the latest Compensation & Pension (C&P) Clinicians Guide dated 20180719. The only other one I've seen is dated 2002, including the one on this website and the VA website. I got this from my claims agent, who got it from the VA.

      VA Compensation & Pension (C&P) Clinicians Guide 2 Final Corrected 20180719.pdf
        • Thanks
        • Like
      • 5 replies
    • I don’t say thank you enough to all of you...
      You, yes you, are the reason HadIt.com has remained a resource-rich resource. Thousands come each month to read, ask questions, or to feel a sense of community.

      Last month June 2020, we over 50k visitors they viewed over 160k pages. Veterans and their advocates, spouses, children, and friends of veterans come looking for answers. Because we have posts dating back 15 years and articles on the home page, they usually can find an answer or at least get pointed in the right direction.

      You all made that possible. Thank you.
        • Like
      • 3 replies
    • Help HadIt.com stay online buy a subscription
      If you can afford it and want to help hadit.com consider buying a subscription this gives you as free viewing of the site and allows me to budget in subscription payments.
       

      You can try it for 1 month for $5 or get a monthly subscription or a yearly subscription.

      Subscribe here https://community.hadit.com/subscriptions/
      • 1 reply
    • VA has a special where we can ask questions TODAY, at 3:00 to "people that matter?"  Someone should ask why we can not ask them questions EVERY day, why today only? (This is a big problem with VA..the 800 number often does not give specific answers).  We should have people in VA who "solve Vets problems" like Allison Hickey did a few years ago. 
        • Like
      • 8 replies
    • The 5, 10, 20 year rules...



      Five Year Rule) If you have had the same rating for five or more years, the VA cannot reduce your rating unless your condition has improved on a sustained basis. All the medical evidence, not just the reexamination report, must support the conclusion that your improvement is more than temporary.



      Ten Year Rule) The 10 year rule is after 10 years, the service connection is protected from being dropped.



      Twenty Year Rule) If your disability has been continuously rated at or above a certain rating level for 20 or more years, the VA cannot reduce your rating unless it finds the rating was based on fraud. This is a very high standard and it's unlikely the rating would get reduced.



      If you are 100% for 20 years (Either 100% schedular or 100% TDIU - Total Disability based on Individual Unemployability or IU), you are automatically Permanent & Total (P&T). And, that after 20 years the total disability (100% or IU) is protected from reduction for the remainder of the person's life. "M-21-1-IX.ii.2.1.j. When a P&T Disability Exists"



      At 55, P&T (Permanent & Total) or a few other reasons the VBA will not initiate a review. Here is the graphic below for that. However if the Veteran files a new compensation claim or files for an increase, then it is YOU that initiated to possible review.



      NOTE: Until a percentage is in place for 10 years, the service connection can be removed. After that, the service connection is protected.



      ------



      Example for 2020 using the same disability rating



      1998 - Initially Service Connected @ 10%



      RESULT: Service Connection Protected in 2008



      RESULT: 10% Protected from reduction in 2018 (20 years)



      2020 - Service Connection Increased @ 30%



      RESULT: 30% is Protected from reduction in 2040 (20 years)
        • Thanks
        • Like
      • 9 replies
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