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Retroactive Pay - Following new legislation for Presumptive Conditions


GulfWarVet1990

Question

Good evening, please excuse if I am posting on the wrong forum. 

In 2003 VA denied my claim for chronic sinusitis, re: environmental hazard conditions/burn pit during my deployment in theatre, Southwest Asia during the Gulf War.

Post new legislation re: VA recognizing Presumptive Conditions for Burn Pit Exposure, I resubmitted a supplemental claim. 

I was granted 10% for chronic sinusitis.  Effective 9/20/21

Am I eligible for retroactive pay as far back 2003 due to the new legislation?

I submitted a HLR late November 2021, as expected no action to date. 

Has anyone experienced this or have guidance on back pay.  

Thank you for your time. 

 

 

Edited by GulfWarVet1990
typo
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This is great News!!!! And a good example and encouragement for other burn pit vets , whose claims are still in the appellate period.

It is exactly how the new regulation will work!!!!!!

This is good advice you gave us, GulfWarVet 1990:

"I would encourage anyone to save your paperwork, hold onto any piece of paper the VA send you."

YOu bet-I have VA paperwork from back to 1983,

"This helped my claim re: environmental hazard conditions-Gulf War."

That paperwork helped me , as a widow of a vet, to succeed in my claims.

My husband was never denied in his lifetime for anything.He had two claims in process that I became the substituted claimant on.He never knew his SCs went up to over 260% from 30% in his lifetime.

I even kept dated envelopes the decisions came in.And a stack of USPS tracking slips,to prove the VA had what they tried to say I had never sent to them.

The VA did the correct job here on your claim. Wonderful News!

 

 

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Welcome to Hadit Gulfwarvet1990 The covid pandemic has messed up a lot of processes and it may be the case for you. A HLR for you that is 2+ months old isn't terrible. Did you request a conference; if so, that is even longer. I would suggest calling the VA info line for claims, 800-827-1000 and see if the rep can shed any light. Ask if it is in queue and is it assigned yet, when you might get a schedule for a call etc. The rep may not be much help but it is shaking the tree a little and you may get them to move on it. You also could talk to a VSO that has VBMS, which allows them to see certain things on your claims file. Most county VSO's have VBMS. More importantly, if by chance you get denied, I wouldn't give up. I would get a good lawyer to appeal for you as the EED process can sometimes a some issues that they are more accustomed to handling. 80% of back pay would be a lot more than 100% of nothing if you were to be denied. Just be sure to be timely if you have to appeal. Keep the appeal string going by submitting within 365 days of the denial of your appeal.

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If you still pursued the claim you should be, you know the drill, NOD, appellant process and so forth.  But that is one point on the new laws with the retroactive date that folks to include my self have pointed to as well.   It seems that they will have to process those in the legacy lane while also granting new claims under the new revised regulations and law.  Then sorting that out later.  My own opinion on the matter is that it will produce a big mess on top of all other issues while these things are hashed out on the hill. Effective date are going to be a big booger.  Still, great ,granting more health issues but I think it's a bandaid of a much larger issue.

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There is considerable info in this thread as to in burn pits claims and why some will receive a favorable EED and why some vets will receive the date of the claim as the EED , if they are filing an initial claim:

https://community.hadit.com/topic/86621-burn-pits/

We all need to get up to speed on this.

"More than 3.7 million people have served in the Persian Gulf and Afghanistan since 1990. Almost all of them were exposed to smoke from burning garbage on U.S. military bases in burn pits, as well as dust storms and man-made pollution."

https://www.pbs.org/newshour/world/va-will-now-recognize-some-veterans-illnesses-associated-with-exposure-to-burn-pits

In this article :

 

"VA Secretary Dr. David Shulkin believes the department’s new ruling is a good first step, but says it still falls short.

“I’m very pleased that the VA has taken a proactive position to finally grant veterans who have been waiting sometimes now for decades to get the benefits that they deserve. But I’m concerned that they didn’t go far enough,” Shulkin said."   He is right!

 This article also explains part of the regulations:

"IMPORTANT: There is no minimum time requirement for the service in the qualifying duty location. As long as your service took place in the Southwest Asia theater of operations from Aug. 2, 1990 to now—or in Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Syria or Djibouti from Sept. 19, 2001 to now—it doesn’t matter if your service was two weeks, two months or two years.

What does matter is that your condition manifested within 10 years of discharge from active duty service. The limitation of 10 years past your date of active duty discharge means you must have developed the condition during that period. 

But even if we’re now more than 10 years past your active duty discharge, that doesn’t mean it’s too late to qualify—IF you had a diagnosis during that 10 years."

https://vaclaimsinsider.com/burn-pit-exposure/

I am not familar with the VA claims Insider -I hope their assessment of that 10 year criteria is correct and it probably is.

I wonder if past unappealed denials could create a valid CUE scenario-if the rating was NSC at least at 10%, I dont see why not--

but then again I also read at a site I do not trust (it came up in a search I did) that VA is reviewing past denied burn pit claims,  in the appeal process now to see if those claims should be reviewed under these new regulations.

I am not putting any money on that.

Some of us here including me were denied this type of a special AO review by the ROs under  Nehmer 2010 but luckily we knew enough about Nehmer to succeed in those claims ourselves with our own"reviews" -by supplying VA, as evidence,  their denials of what became an AO presumptive in 2010, that had been rated as NSC at 10% or more. NVLSP reviewed those newer AO decision if we requested them to-and VA did most of them correctly.

This stuff is BIG for GWVs but it apparently is not important enough to become national news -Sec Wilkie only mentioned Blue Water NAvy AO regs once that I know of on a news channel -Fox- and the other medias seemed to ignore it.

Hopefully the VAMCs have some info on their lobby bulletin boards about it and hopefully some recent hard copy mags from DAV, AL, VFW etc .

 

 

 

I posted this NVLSP info below here before- but it bears repeating the info- also Nov 30 2021 is gone but that will not matter.

I believe this regards only vets who have not filed yet for any of the new burn pit presumptives.

The regulations have covered those vets still in the appeal process,who are impacted by the regulations in this thread and in many recent BVA decisions.

"Burn Pits Claims Assistance Program

NVLSP is expanding its representation of veterans to include cases before the VA on claims for service-connected disability benefits for diseases arising from exposure to burn pits overseas. If you or someone you know served on a base where burn pits were used to dispose of paint, medical/human waste, metals, plastics, rubber, etc., and you are currently seeking service-connected compensation for a condition, respiratory or otherwise, that you believe resulted from your exposure to these burn pits, NVLSP may be able to help.

Please fill out and submit the Burn Pits Intake Form linked below, and we will send you an application, Privacy Act Waiver, and Standard Form 180 to help us obtain your records and determine whether or not we will be able to represent you in your case.

Our organization has been representing veterans in VA service-connected disability compensation cases for 40 years. We understand the large burden that navigating the world of VA benefits often places on veterans, and we do not take these cases lightly. We therefore guarantee that we will thoroughly review each application we receive and will work as quickly as possible to decide whether we can provide legal representation in your case.

NVLSP provides legal services at no cost to the veteran. Priority will be given to veterans who submit their application before November 30, 2021."

https://www.nvlsp.org/what-we-do/burn-pits-claims-assistance-program/

 

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