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HLR Informal Conference? Statement? Both?



Hello all. Hopefully an easy question as I can assume that there are a good number of people that have questioned this, and have gone either way, when appealing to a Higher Level Review (HLR).

When I fill out my paperwork for a HLR, should I check the  box and ask for an Informal Conference? Should I just submit a statement? Should I do both?

I have heard good arguments for, and against, the informal conference. Some say it's better to speak to the rater to make your case and make sure that all the evidence was looked at. Others say that It's better to submit a statement making your case because the rater can't look at the claim until you're on the phone with them if you choose a conference, and that you may inadvertently say something that goes against you, and the HLR will take longer if you select the informal conference rather than submitting a statement. I'm not sure if all that is true or not. I'm leaning toward doing both, but am not sure as I don't want to delay my claim any longer than it needs to be.

Any advice is much appreciated!

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If you have no problems talking to people, go for that.  Or, if you prefer, write it down if that is more comfortable.  Do what you are good at.  

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With an HLR, you're not supposed to include any additional evidence, but I'm not sure if a statement would be considered evidence. I submitted an HLR for an earlier effective date and I did ask for the informal conference. It is possible that asking for the conference could delay your claim but I think it's worth it. You can plead your case and point out evidence that they possibly missed. 

My informal conference was very short because the DRO had reviewed my claim and agreed that my effective dates were incorrect and that she was going to correct them., which she did do.  

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I would have the conference it will become part of your record.

So if you do have to appeal to the board it will be part of your record

It is much faster to get the conference than bva hearing.

I have a couple of claims won during the conference also

Good luck

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