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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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Galen Rogers

Submitting a NOD with supplemental claims under the new system

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Howdy all. I'm finalizing my NOD to submit. I should have it ready to submit early next month. I have been told that I need to submit in the Supplemental Lane because I have additional support document to rebut the C&P Nurse examiner's exam. But I also plan to submit supplemental claims for the pain, numbness, and tingling in my arms and legs due to my neck and lower back problems. They will be secondary to those two issues. But the arms and legs issues were both listed as problematic in my original claim and even identified in my NEXUS letter and the DBQs I submitted. I did not specifically claim those issues independently though. Would those also be part of the NOD since they did not acknowledge them or actual supplemental claims?

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If your neck/lumbar issues are not currently SC, the VA may wait for them to be SC before putting in the effort to process them.

When I filed my last set of claims, I submitted requests for my cervical/lumbar conditions and explicitly requested bilateral upper and lower limb radiculopathy as secondary to it. I realized that if I could not get cervical/lumbar SC, then the secondary issues were moot.

Keep in mind the VA is supposed to fully develop your requested disabilities plus any secondary disabilities which could arise from them. I would advise you remind them of the radiculopathy when you submit your NOD. Don't let them let it fall through the cracks.

 

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I dont recommend "applying for new benefits" within an appeal.  Send in a new application, seperate from your appeal.  Its true,   It might work, but you are better off keeping it simple, because you dont know the level of education of the person who will be working your claim.   By sending in a claim within an appeal, you are giving a decision maker an opportunity to make mistakes and delay you more.   

Further, Veterans need not completely understand the differences between "primary", "secondary", "presumptive",  direct, etc., to receive benefits.  If you go to work for VA, you will need to understand these things well, but dont try to do their job for them..they may resent it.  The VA has to consider all methods of sc.  For example, if you apply for beneftis which are on the presumptive list, the VA needs to figure that out..not you.  

    This said, I understand that there is plenty of incompetency to go around at the VA, so I can see the temptation of defining what type of claim your's is.  However, your rater may see it differently than you, and you dont want to give em an excuse to deny, for example, because you applied for direct sc, and the rater thought it was secondary.  

    If you are sure there is evidence for secondary SC, then say something like:

"I want to apply for benefit x, BOTH primary and secondary to xyz.  Let the rating specialist decide if the evidence supports a primary, secondary, or presumptive condition.   Dont "limit" your claim to ONLY primary or ONLY secondary or ONLY presumptive..the VA is supposed to consider all.  

Edited by broncovet

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