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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

Question

     I have been rated 80% with TDIU since 2013. I recently attended my 5 year re-evaluation for PTSD. My exam results showed up on Myhealthyvet today, but I shouldn't get a decision until June or July according to VA.gov. I just wanted to know what you guys thought my rating "MAY" be based on this C&P.  Of course, my PTSD and MDD are firing at max speed right now worrying about it. My concern is the part where the Dr says "Moderately Severe" PTSD and depression. I have heard stories about the raters pulling small words like that out and using them for a reason to reduce benefits.                             Thank you in advance for your time and responses. 

 

cp1.pdf cp2.pdf cp3.pdf cp4.pdf cp5.pdf cp6.pdf cp7.pdf cp8.pdf cp9.pdf cp10.pdf

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               Thank you for your replies... I tried to go back to school by taking two college courses in the past 2 years and it didn't go well, I ask my professor to write a letter stating what she witnessed and what special accommodations she had to make in order for me to get a passing grade. I submitted that letter to VA. Gov as evidence for my "claim". Let's just say the accommodations were far beyond what a normal student would receive.  VA.gov says the rater has viewed my letter from a college professor basically saying I had no chance of being successful in college due to my symptoms & I assume the DBQ from the C&P exam. My decision date has somehow gone from June 13th to April 4th. So I am guessing they have enough to rate me?? Is this good or is this bad? I wasn't ready for the VA to do something faster than expected. Normally its the other way around. 

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           I dont know if it matters but I have a couple other things I sent in as evidence and for some reason the rater did not read any of them. Only he letter from my professor. I don't know if this is good or bad that they moved the date forward 2 months. I hope someone has something to tell me.  Thank you again

 

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14 minutes ago, haasume said:

               Thank you for your replies... I tried to go back to school by taking two college courses in the past 2 years and it didn't go well, I ask my professor to write a letter stating what she witnessed and what special accommodations she had to make in order for me to get a passing grade. I submitted that letter to VA. Gov as evidence for my "claim". Let's just say the accommodations were far beyond what a normal student would receive.  VA.gov says the rater has viewed my letter from a college professor basically saying I had no chance of being successful in college due to my symptoms & I assume the DBQ from the C&P exam. My decision date has somehow gone from June 13th to April 4th. So I am guessing they have enough to rate me?? Is this good or is this bad? I wasn't ready for the VA to do something faster than expected. Normally its the other way around. 

That evidence should carry the day.

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Posted (edited)

My guess would be that yours is not a difficult claim to adjudicate so they were able to get it (almost) finished faster than expected. Based on the info you shared, there's no way they'll reduce your rating. 

Regarding the term "moderate to severe", it's important to put it in perspective. 90% to 95% of the country is not suffering from two serious debilitating mental disorders at the same time.

Here's Dr. Mark's off-the-cuff, unscientific, for-illustrative-purposes only, 11-point "severity scale" that I just typed out as a "thought experiment" to give you a sense of where "moderate to severe" fits on the continuum.

Rating - Description

0 - No symptoms, no history of disorder.

2 - Mild symptoms but frequency, intensity, & duration insufficient for DSM-5 diagnosis of disorder.

4 - Mild symptoms that satisfy DSM-5 diagnosis for the disorder. Experiencing symptoms more often and with more intensity - harder for him to say "it's just a bad week" or similar. Wife said he seems dejected, less energy, motivation flags. He'll bounce back for days or even a week or two but that's becoming less often. Calling in sick to work more often. Supervisor said management has commented on his declined productivity.

6 - Moderate symptoms that cause noticeable and significant social and occupational impairment; frequent distress, dispirited; interpersonal relationships strained, even with her children; school functioning has clearly declined. Got a "C" in one course and two Incomplete grades. Decided to hold off on continuing college coursework, even though she is close to earning all credits for bachelor's degree.

8 - Moderate to Severe - frequent painful symptoms much of the time despite assiduously seeking treatment and following his doctors' advice; significant social & occupational dysfunction; probably will need to seek medical leave, reduce work hours, or may end up not being able to work. Psychiatrist has discussed options for "treatment-resistant depression", e.g., ECT (electroconvulsive therapy); the new ketamine-like medication; Lithium; Abilify; etc.; psychologist recommended VA's 6-week residential treatment program for PTSD in Sheridan, WY.

10 - Severe - very frequent, soul-crushing painful symptoms most of the time despite assiduously seeking treatment and following his doctors' advice; substantial suffering is obvious; significant social impairment, and no longer able to work, at least for the next several months or longer.

[The above is not an official, unofficial, actual, or real mental health scale. It's just a way to put symptom severity and functional impairment in perspective for illustrative purposes only.]

Edited by Mark D Worthen PsyD
left out "11-point"
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 VA.gov says my claim went from Gathering info to Preparing for notification this morning. My claim went from a C&P exam last Monday to prep for notification the following Monday so exactly one week. They didn't review all of the evidence I submitted either. Kind of odd, but I will keep everyone posted in case someone else has a similar situation. Hopefully this will be of some help weather, bad or good. 

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