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Forgotten Again


It seems that both the VA and my attorney, Ken Carpenter, have forgotten about my claim/case. I have been in the appeal process for 10 years and 4 months and have made very little headway.  In my last conversation with my attorney 's assistant it was discussed that it may be time for a Writ of Mandamus but that was in May and I have heard nothing.  I think Ken Carpenter's office is overwhelmed with recent claims he has accepted even tho I think he is in his 70's. I ve been his client for about 12 years now but I have seen alot of inactivity in recent years on my case.  .  

We have been waiting for years for the Regional Office to certify my claim and send it to the board.


This forum is the best place to vent frustration




Any ideas or suggestions

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The obvious answer is have you discussed this issue with Mr. Ken Carpenter?

Now, "unless" you qualify for an advance on the docket, there isnt much an attorney can do to hurry up a sometimes decade long wait.  

Ten years to do an appeal is becoming the "new normal" for anything but the most basic of claims.  The "regular" 5 year wait easily doubles with glitches, and many/most have glitches.  VA seeks them out.  

My claim has been in appeals since 2002..a total of 17 years.  Now, of course I have had (multiple) decisions, some good, some not so good.  

Im still fighting them on the effective date and SMC.  I "might" get a final decision in 2019 or 2020, but, if either are denied (again), then 20 years is just around the corner, and beyond.  

The BVA chairmans report talks about a 5 year turn around time.  That understates it, tho, and by a wide margin.  You see, each of these issues are appealable, and each of the following can take 5 or more years alone:

1.  Service connection.  If you get denied SC, then you may have to appeal for 5 years.  Then its on to number 2, after you get SC.

2.  Disability percentage.  Again, you dispute the disability percentage and its easy to go for another 5 years. 

3.  Effective date.  Ok, you got your rating, but at the wrong effective date?  5 plus more years of appeals.  

4.  Lastly, and often not mentioned is SMC.  After you get 100 percent, often you have to go back and fight VA again for SMC...that is what Im having to do.  

      The BVA often chops up your claim into "one" of these.  Then, the VARO comes back and messes up the next one on this list.  

       Remands worsen the problem, often doubling the time.  This means that Veterans can/do spend 5 times 4 = 20 times 2 for remands =40 years to get benefits.  

I have heard of Veterans taking longer than 40 years.  Here is one, Mr. Macklem, which took the VA 60 years, and that is not the longest I have heard of:


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Wow! Utterly amazing!

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Broncovet is right on what he posted. Ask for the current status of your claim.

That and everyone is coming out of the wood work and claiming everything under the sun even if they don't have it, part of that is due to the past ten years. The economy does great less people submit claims, when the economy isn't great the flood starts with claims. This creates the back log that we have now. I know it's frustrating, I'm there too right now. My original claim was submitted couple months after discharged in 03. 

Bruce Sprinsteens catchy song "Born in the USA" isn't so catchy if you read the lyrics. That was released in 1984. 

Then you have RO that worked at the RO for decades and says the system isn't flawed. No?!, but the RO is flawed. This dude has ______, denied because its presumptive but denied anyways, lets see if her fights back with a Writ of Mandamus/CUE. Dude drank too much of the koolaid and retired after 30 years at the RO. He's whats wrong with the system. Which is why I saw the delays at the VSO and wanted speedy action, so I fired them and lawyer-ed up.

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The VA has managed to implement their motto:


Keep on delay and denying them (Veterans) until they die.  

Many, many Vets die waiting on VA to process claims/appeals.  I heard the number 1/3 of all claims.  Many/most of the widows dont know to file a "substitution" claim so they can continue the Vets claim, and, without that, the claim dies with the Veteran.  Its a win/win for VA, a lose/lose for Vets.  

This is the real reason VA delays:  There is financial incentive for them to do so.  Think about it.  

If you owed a bill, and could delay it without penalty or interest for 10, 20 years or more, hoping the guy you owed money to died, would you not do so likewise??  Frankly I would like to do that with my phone bill.  

Edited by broncovet

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About all I know to say it that Veterans need to educate them self with the VA Processing of claims.

  They need to study up on the VA Regulations known to us as the Code of Federal Regulations and how the VA  Implements them agianst us And how the Veterans can fight back  ITS OUR ONLY LINE OF DEFENSE

Remember Knowledge is Power   when it comes to the VA Claims Process.

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    • Precedent Setting CAVC cases cited in the M21-1
      A couple months back before I received my decision I started preparing for the appeal I knew I would be filing.  That is how little faith I had in the VA caring about we the veteran. 

      One of the things I did is I went through the entire M21-1 and documented every CAVC precedent case that the VA cited. I did this because I wanted to see what the rater was seeing.  I could not understand for the life of me why so many obviously bad decisions were being handed down.  I think the bottom line is that the wrong type of people are hired as raters.  I think raters should have some kind of legal background.  They do not need to be lawyers but I think paralegals would be a good idea.

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