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    I have memory problems and as some of you may know I highly recommend Evernote and have for years. Though I've found that writing helps me remember more. I ran across Tom's videos on youtube, I'm a bit geeky and I also use an IPad so if you take notes on your IPad or you are thinking of going paperless check it out. I'm really happy with it, I use it with a program called Noteshelf 2.

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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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  • Most Common VA Disabilities Claimed for Compensation:   

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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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    • So, my lawyer sent an IME w/ IMO and filed a supplemental claim solely for IU on March 20.

      It was closed on March 25, and va.gov just states claim closed and nothing more.

      Hopefully, I get good news.
    • Thanks for the responses. I am filing a new claim but will continue pushing the NOD. My new question is it stated in law or statute that if during the claims process the VA finds conditions that could possibly rate service connection that was not originally filed for, the VA will “invite” the veteran to file the claim on the claims form. Reason I ask is that my private DBQs, NEXUS letter, and even the VA nurse examiner's DBQs lists bilateral upper radiculopathy as present. If it is written in statute or official guidance it might qualify as a CUE. Just looking at all angles. 
    • Everyone needs to read our stories so they can try to avoid these screws by the va...
      Thank you, everyone contributes, good or bad, all of our stories will help others, and yes, they have been stated by others for ages, over and over, but we just get depressed, and the time turns into years as they screw us..

      Welcome to the department of Veterans Affairs!  I can honestly say, "been there, done that".  

      Even after winning my tdiu in 2017, it was back to the drawing board as VA hornswaggeld my effective date.  (but of course).  

      I finally won my tdiu effective date in Feb. 2020, 18 years after I first applied!!!  

      Here is how they managed to drag mine out 18 years:

      1.  They never adjuticated my decison until 2009, where they called it "moot".  

      2.  I appealed, said it was not moot because it could result in an earlier effective date and SMC S under Bradley vs Peake.  The judge agreed with me, and ordered VARO consider me for extra schedular TDIU, under 4.16 b.  

      3.  The VARO piddles with  the remand for 3 years, and hoped I wouldnt notice.  I noticed and raised cane until they adjuticated it.  (denied of course).  

      4.  Finally, after the baord denied again, I hired a lawyer, in 2014, and appealed to CAVC.   

      5.  The lawyer won a remand, got an IMO and I won tdiu in 2017.  But at the wrong effective date, even after 15 years.  

      6.  I hired another lawyer, Chris Attig, and appealed the effective date, and he won a remand for effective date.  Trip 2 to CAVC.  

      7.  Mr. Attig won a remand, and advised me to get another IMO.  

      8.  The board awarded my earlier effective date in Feb. 2020.  

           So, I do have advice fighting VA for TDIU, they fought and fought and I hung in there and won it all.  

      ADVICE:  Dont count on VA, they could easily throw your fax in the trash.  Follow up!  
    • "Keep in mind that due to the nature of the digestive system, VA would most likely combined your conditions and pay you at the higher rate to avoid pyramiding".    That is one of my main gripes.  They are only listing the GERD with hiatal hernia and ignoring the rest of my gastric issues such as the gastritis which I also had in service.  I included it in my 2007 request for increase and again in 2019.  The info from the civilian dr that stated I had the gastritis with H pylori was not even provided to the examiner in 2007, nor did he have my VA health records. The 2019 request was based on an EGD I had AT THE VA in Jan 2019.   I filed for an increase 6 Mar and they did an ACE on 27 Mar and downgraded to noncompensable on that date.  The only reason I was thinking CUE:  38 CFR § 3.326 - Under Examinations  it states (c) Provided that it is otherwise adequate for rating purposes, a statement from a private physician may be accepted for rating a claim without further examination".  
    • Enough has been said on this topic. This forum is not the proper forum for an attorney and former client to hash out their problems. Please take this offline
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abnrgr88

P&T from IU yes or no?

Question

I was just granted P&T IU at 90% overall. I have not filed for an increase from a 20% DDD. I had 13 level spinal fusion after the 20% was granted. Yes my wife and son now have a chance at champva, yes chapter 35 as well. its been 17 months since surgery and everything seems to be falling apart. upcoming surgery for right and left hip impingement...not yet rated. Lost all hearing in right ear and now 50% in other,...10% hearing loss and 10% tinnitus existing. Chronic pain syndrome well documented in my file..not yet rated. 19" scar down my back painful as heck...not rated......I can use some experienced advice please??

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34 minutes ago, abnrgr88 said:

I guess i am worried they will take away existing disabilities. Or, give me 100% overall from 90% and keep me IU

1) no and 2) no  that is not how it works.

To reduce a rating or in your case take away TDIU, they would have to jump through a bunch of hoops and prove the you are no longer in a state of not being able to work. ...that isn't happening. I am not being rude, but your level of spinal problems don;t just get better and damn sure cannot be faked.  yes there are more technical and detailed ways to say it, but  the short version is don't sweat that.

you still have not posted a list with percentages of what you are rated for that makes up the 90% so that is still unclear

37 minutes ago, abnrgr88 said:

give me 100% overall from 90% and keep me IU

no. just no. What TDIU means is that a veteran who is NOT 100% schedular but cannot work even with a lower rating (lots of extra details not important here) gets paid at the 100% rate. the monthly compensation is the same.

If that vets problems get worse and the VA increases their rating to 100% schedular, TDIU becomes moot and no longer applies. In other words you cannot be both 100% Schedular and TDIU at the same time. The lesser value rating is TDIU and the official VA party line is that all decisions are to be made to the best advantage of the veteran.

your money will be the same in terms of compensation. If you have SSDI that is unaffected by becoming 100% schedular.

As brokensoldier said in his second post

1 hour ago, brokensoldier244th said:

If you are 100% by schedule you can work as much as you want, so long as you can tolerate whatever you are doing physically and mentally, while IU is a lot more restricted. 

As for rocking the boat.

I will bet that 95% of the people who read that sentence will immediately think some VSO told you that...and I am one of them.

Don't believe it. There is a lot of chatter as to why VSO's say this, and some can make sense if you are the conspiracy theory type or just believe that everyone in government is corrupt. Whatever the truth is, many vets do hear that from their VSO.  I personally subscribe to the idea that the lazy ones just don't want the hassle of what appealing and asking for increases entail.

if you are in pain, or some existing harm has increased, file for an increase!!!!!! The VA rating system for payments is meant to compensate the veteran for harms incurred by their military service. It is not a handout, it is not the VA's money and it is not a gift. It is compensation.

if you want opinions on ratings we can do better if you supply more information.

list all the SC conditions you have, and at what percent.

List all the other conditions you have not yet been rated for, and if you have already filed a claim for, even if they denied that claim.

list the date each claim was approved, made or denied.

with your level of back problems I doubt you move very well (that makes the weightlifting entry in your profile unusual), which indicates you could possibly have packed on a few pounds and or may have issues with things like diabetes or are nearing that. IF you did pork out the extra weight and limited movement may be aggravating any condition you have with your knees, legs or feet.

I am not trying to be rude my friend, but IF those things exist you may have claims available to you as secondary conditions.

do you snore? do you stop breathing when you sleep? does your spouse have to wake you up when you stop breathing? you may have Sleep Apnea, which can be secondary if your existing SC problems can be logically and medically connected to the SA. for example, your back problem means you have porked out and now have breathing and sleeping problems from the weight. that is a direct line that can be fleshed out to help make the connection. I am not saying it is easy, or some straight process, just that it would be a valid path to explore if that situation exists.

please understand no one here can make suggestions or offer valid opinions until you provide us the information on all your conditions.

1 hour ago, abnrgr88 said:

 now it is totally gone in the right and at 50% in the left.

 

as I asked before is this based on a hearing test or just life? if there was a test was it part of a C&P? Deaf is a ratable and compensable condition and a 50% loss is too if they are service connected.

if you have the audiogram please post the numbers and frequencies. Also post the Maryland CNC results.

This will seem personal and intrusive. it is not meant to be so. Are you depressed, anxious, a little paranoid about things? do you get angry for reasons you used to not get angry? all since your back stuff started "falling apart" as you stated?

you may be able to make a claim for depression and or anxiety secondary to your physical injuries. No one could blame you if you were depressed and anxious. it is no shame no matter what you may feel or think.

the level of problems you have are consistent with developing severe depression. I am not suggesting you lie or exaggerate, but if you are depressed and or anxious, and be honest ask your wife if she thinks you are 'different',  mention it to your PCP, Back Docs, and any other VA docs you see. get them to note it in your treatment record. ask for help with it.

If it is bad enough file a claim.

every vet here has empathy for you and wishes you the best. please post those things i asked for so we can give you better suggestions.

                   
                   
                   
                   
                   
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If they make you 100% you don't need I/u anymore. 

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brokensoldier244th this is debatable

Example/Senerio 

What if a veteran has a 50% 10% and 30% combined rating for hearing loss and he got these ratings over the years as his hearing kept getting worse.

50%hearing loss 10%tinnitus 30% increase on hearing loss   total 90% combined. so actually his rating is 80% plus 10% for the tinnitus  & all service connected. but we will say he has a combined over all rating at 90% for this example.

Okay , he now has a combined rating at 90% and since he can't work due to his S.C. hearing loss  the rater infers the TDIU P&T with no future exams and this condition is not expected to improve within the veterans lifetime.and is P&T

Ok this Veteran is Rated at TDIU P&T Now &  he can't work if he could because of this rating.

OK few years later  he files another claim totally different from his original hearing loss claim,  lets say PTSD

Okay he gets a 70% rating for that plus files a E.D. Claim  secondary to his PTSD medications causing the E.D...This is service connected & rated at 0% But paid in addition to his already TDIU the 108** $$monthly...so basically the ED. Rating don't count being its just at a 0% rating but S.C. (keep in mind this is all service connected)

Ok what do you think his rating should be now? do you think it should be a scheduler 100%.??

Do you think he is entitled to SMC S HB?..Do you think they will make this Veteran 100% and moot the IU award?

If they do that and make the IU Award moot  then that takes away the 90% combined rating he got for hearing loss ..right? then that leaves only his 70% for PTSD.

So in your opinion how should this veteran be rated at now?

What final degree rating should this Veteran have  in your opinion veteran to veteran.

Edited by Buck52

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2 hours ago, Buck52 said:

f they do that and make the IU Award moot  then that takes away the 90%

why would getting rated for PTSD remove the hearing rating? I don't understand how you think that is what happens.

The mere 'addition' of another SC'd condition does not delete or remove your original condition.

so in this scenario the vet is at the stated 90%, gets rated 70% for a non related claim, ptsd in your example, that makes 90 + 70 which is 97 rounded to 100.

Once you are at a schedular 100 there is no place to go except the SMC's but not every 100% vet is entitled to SMC's

AS for TDIU it is the lesser rating. Schedular is the superior rating. they both compensate at the same level.

TDIU amounts to a Congressionally created  work around for unemployable vets whose injuries don't yet meet the schedular maximum of 100%

Once 100% schedular is reached the work around is no longer needed but the underlying conditions and ratings don't go away.

have you ever met a veteran who told you the scenario you mention happened to them? or do you know/hear from veterans who were TDIU but made Schedular and longer needed the TDIU work around?

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GeekySquid

This is just an example and scenario for Brokensolider244th 

Just for Veterans information and education about rating proposals for IU Veterans  and discussion on the above posting about the way IU is rated my example is addressed to Brokensoldier244th as to what is being discussed.

I know the answer to this scenario and how and why a Veteran is rated for I. U. or the 100% Scheduler for the normal rating process  and for SMC...With the exception of special circumstances.

A lot of Veterans out there don't know the answer to this who maybe rated with the CFR 4.15. OR 4.16 (b) Extra scheduler rating that were rated with a combined rating less that the 100% scheduler

Your correct as to why we have the TDIU Rating for Veterans that have a lesser rating of 100% who can't work because of their S.C. Disability   the IU is giving to the Veteran to help out financially Obviously.

I wanted to see what Brokensolider244th answer was?

 GeekySquid quoted

''why would getting rated for PTSD remove the hearing rating? I don't understand how you think that is what happens.''

I don't think that  duh!!!!

This was addressed to Brokensolider244th  not you sir.

It will state in e benefits on EOB just how a Veteran is rated and S.C. for and if they meet the 100% of the scheduler rating   as to the final degree of his/her rating.

  If they reach that plateau and Normally a 90% combined S.C. Rated Veteran that is getting IU With P&T with no future exams scheduled and his disability is of chronic in nature and not expected to Improve in his/her life time  AND files for another disease or Injury and that is S.C. And giving a rating of 60 % or higher  this quailfy's  the Veteran for SMC S H.B. using the SMC Special rating table chart  The reason for of this   is some times the rater don't do this for the Veteran  so if the Veteran knows of this then he can request the SMC S HB be given to him  its about another 360.00 bucks added to his 100% rating .

this is a statutory  rating and its mandatory for the raters to give this rating to the Veteran. They tend some times not to do that.

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  • Our picks

    • So, my lawyer sent an IME w/ IMO and filed a supplemental claim solely for IU on March 20.

      It was closed on March 25, and va.gov just states claim closed and nothing more.

      Hopefully, I get good news.
    • Thanks for the responses. I am filing a new claim but will continue pushing the NOD. My new question is it stated in law or statute that if during the claims process the VA finds conditions that could possibly rate service connection that was not originally filed for, the VA will “invite” the veteran to file the claim on the claims form. Reason I ask is that my private DBQs, NEXUS letter, and even the VA nurse examiner's DBQs lists bilateral upper radiculopathy as present. If it is written in statute or official guidance it might qualify as a CUE. Just looking at all angles. 
    • Everyone needs to read our stories so they can try to avoid these screws by the va...
      Thank you, everyone contributes, good or bad, all of our stories will help others, and yes, they have been stated by others for ages, over and over, but we just get depressed, and the time turns into years as they screw us..

      Welcome to the department of Veterans Affairs!  I can honestly say, "been there, done that".  

      Even after winning my tdiu in 2017, it was back to the drawing board as VA hornswaggeld my effective date.  (but of course).  

      I finally won my tdiu effective date in Feb. 2020, 18 years after I first applied!!!  

      Here is how they managed to drag mine out 18 years:

      1.  They never adjuticated my decison until 2009, where they called it "moot".  

      2.  I appealed, said it was not moot because it could result in an earlier effective date and SMC S under Bradley vs Peake.  The judge agreed with me, and ordered VARO consider me for extra schedular TDIU, under 4.16 b.  

      3.  The VARO piddles with  the remand for 3 years, and hoped I wouldnt notice.  I noticed and raised cane until they adjuticated it.  (denied of course).  

      4.  Finally, after the baord denied again, I hired a lawyer, in 2014, and appealed to CAVC.   

      5.  The lawyer won a remand, got an IMO and I won tdiu in 2017.  But at the wrong effective date, even after 15 years.  

      6.  I hired another lawyer, Chris Attig, and appealed the effective date, and he won a remand for effective date.  Trip 2 to CAVC.  

      7.  Mr. Attig won a remand, and advised me to get another IMO.  

      8.  The board awarded my earlier effective date in Feb. 2020.  

           So, I do have advice fighting VA for TDIU, they fought and fought and I hung in there and won it all.  

      ADVICE:  Dont count on VA, they could easily throw your fax in the trash.  Follow up!  
    • "Keep in mind that due to the nature of the digestive system, VA would most likely combined your conditions and pay you at the higher rate to avoid pyramiding".    That is one of my main gripes.  They are only listing the GERD with hiatal hernia and ignoring the rest of my gastric issues such as the gastritis which I also had in service.  I included it in my 2007 request for increase and again in 2019.  The info from the civilian dr that stated I had the gastritis with H pylori was not even provided to the examiner in 2007, nor did he have my VA health records. The 2019 request was based on an EGD I had AT THE VA in Jan 2019.   I filed for an increase 6 Mar and they did an ACE on 27 Mar and downgraded to noncompensable on that date.  The only reason I was thinking CUE:  38 CFR § 3.326 - Under Examinations  it states (c) Provided that it is otherwise adequate for rating purposes, a statement from a private physician may be accepted for rating a claim without further examination".  
    • Enough has been said on this topic. This forum is not the proper forum for an attorney and former client to hash out their problems. Please take this offline
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