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Help for fellow veteran


2oicclouds

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Help! Veteran friend is Desert Storm vet, diagnosed with PTSD.  The bad.....  He has a general discharge under less than honorable conditions.  He went AWOL for a short period of time after Desert Storm when his dad was diagnosed with cancer.  The problem is that he was authorized to receive mental and physical care at local VA and has been going for the past 15 YEARS!  ..with no problems.  I encouraged him to to file a change bin Character of Service with the VA and DOD bc of war related PTSD.  He has not filed, yet.......but started gathering evidence for this claim.  Today, he gets told by local VA, the very one he has been going to 15+ years now, that he can no longer use them bc of his discharge.  His mental health and medical health are bad.  He has no insurance and has been getting all meds, live saving meds, thru the VA.  Question...... Can they just cut him off like this???????  We will continue to work on a claim to, hopefully, change his character of service BUT......he is terrified and needs his medications!!  Any advice?????  Thank you all!!!

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Hello and welcome,

It sound like the VA has messed this up bad.  First thing first you need to get them to file to get their discharge upgraded, and caused the issues for the bad discharge.  Without this going on you are just hoping someone will do something.  

Next I would contact your Local VSO and next I would contact the Reginal office.  I would explain the situation and see if they can send you in the right direction.  

Next I would call the 800# and find out if there is any direction they can give you.  

My point here is to keep calling anyone you can until they send you in the right direction.  The first step is to get that discharge upgraded as they do not have to do anything until that changes.  I am not saying they won't and you should not try, but it will be more difficult.  

I am hoping someone else has some better direction on here to send you in.  

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2 hours ago, 2oicclouds said:

Help! Veteran friend is Desert Storm vet, diagnosed with PTSD.

I am not trying to be insensitive, but you can lead a horse to water, but you can't force it to drink. The bottom line is the veteran will have to fill out the form to upgrade his discharge. While he can try to get some assistance from a social worker at the VAMC hospital, he is going to have to fill out the form and send it in. Now due the COVID-19 everything is moving a lot slower, and it may take even longer to get his upgrade.

DD Form 149, Application for Correction of Military Record Under the Provisions of Title 10, U.S. Code, Section 1552, May 2003. (pentagon.mil)

DD Form 293, Application for the Review of Discharge from the Armed Forces of the United States, August 2015 (pentagon.mil)

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Posted (edited)

Yes.  This is what he needs to do:

Contact NVLSP for help upgrading the discharge.  MANY PTSD Vets had "issues", thus the PTSD!  PTSD probably began before exit from service, thus the behaviour challenges.  

https://www.nvlsp.org/what-we-do/lawyers-serving-warriors/assistance-with-discharge-upgrades-for-veterans-from-all-eras/#:~:text=Request Assistance with Discharge Upgrades,a less than honorable discharge.

 

IN relevant part:

Quote

....

4. Who is eligible for assistance with a BCMR application through NVLSP’s Lawyers Serving Warriors® program?

All veterans who suffered from a mental disorder (such as PTSD or depression) in service that contributed to misconduct that resulted in an administrative separation with a discharge under Other Than Honorable Conditions (OTH). 

My opinion:  Dont, repeat, dont go to a VSO "at least" until/unless NVLSP declines to represent you.  Instead of a VSO, get a professional lawyer, which should cost you zero out of pocket. (NVLSP).  NVLSP are "pro's" at discharge upgrades, VSO's are not.  

However, confirm this with the NVLSP that you are eligible, at the link, above.  

 

Edited by broncovet
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From what I read, less than 10% are successful.

I also read that you have to be committed to it, and want the upgrade because the OTH was unjust and your stellar life and career since your misstep have improved and you are now an upstanding citizen and want to contribute.  I also read that the board really is not concerned with your medical situation and is kind of turned off on that request.  So there is that.

Your friend needs to step up and figure this out on his own.  You're nice to be helping, but not with the OTH upgrade.  That's his and he needs to fix.

I also read, that there are different considerations for the amount of time AWOL, and they take into consideration how he preformed after he rejoined his unit, i.e., they like to see a letter from his Commander stating that he improved and was an asset to his unit.

So, your friend needs to step up,

Hamslice

Not sure how he got help from the VA up until now, but they do help sometimes.  The quick stop might mean there might have been some shenanigan's when he got his benefits.  So, there could be more to come in that regards. 

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