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Filing for secondary's

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How do you file for secondary's? What form do you use and how is it awarded like is it on the primary or a whole new code and disability rating on the secondary? Thanks in advance I never filed for any secondary's.

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All conditions are filed on the same form regardless of whether it is secondary or not.  Use a 526EZ, if it is the first time filing for it. As far as ratings, they stand alone so for example GERD is rated the same as GERD that is secondary to a medication for a service connected condition.

Edited by asdf
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.  Good question.  Its unnecessary to "file" for a secondary.  YOu apply for the (applicable condition, PTSD, arthritis, etc. etc) "to include" both the primary, secondary, presumptive etc.  

Its the rating specialist's job to decide "primary, secondary, presumptive, etc", not your's .  The Va is supposed to "include the different types of service connection".  Now, if you are unsure if VARO "will include" secondary, primary, etc,. its okay to mention it, but dont burn down bridges that "limit" it to secondary condition even if you are a claims expert who has recently reviewed your entire cfile.  (unlikely).  

If you specify "secondary sc only", well you may not get it right, first of all, "especially" if you have not recently thoroughly reviewed your own cfile, because SC is mostly "evidence based".  As an example, if you are SC for both PTSD and mdd, and specify "secondary to MDD", then a doctor may well say your condition is not secondary to MDD, but instead is secondary to another of your sc conditions, or, even, list it "at least as likely as not" due to an event in service, that is, primary.  

I know its tempting to show VA "just how much you know" about the claims process, but this can well be offensive to some.  I have heard comments like the following: 


How would this Veteran supposed to know if this condition was primary, secondary, presumptive, etc., when he has never worked in claims?  This is "my job" and I have to follow the rules of my bosses, but Veteran claimants dont have the right to tell me how to do my job.  I will fix him for that, I will just deny it and we will see how much he knows about VA claims when he appeals to the board..or, better yet, just forgets to file a (timely) appeal.  Serves him right.  

Remember, there are "disgruntled" VA employees, like many other employees.  Not all, of course, but do you know which one(s) will you "draw" to work on your claim?  You probably dont know.  And, at least some are "looking for a fast easy denial" in order to meet quotas.  Remember, with a denial, the VARO employee "need not" try to consider a disability percentage, effective date, etc.  Just click "denied" and cut and paste some "textbook" reasons for denial, probably already saved in the system. 

My advice is dont give them an "easy way" to deny you.  I think its a good idea, if you have lots of claim knowledge, to mostly keep that under your hat.  Some VA employees will want to "one up" your knowledge, and see how knowledgeable you are when you go to appeals.  

Contrary to some postings, a denial is often way faster, as it involves fewer steps, such as deciding disabilty percentages, or effective dates.  All those steps take time, unnecessary with denials.  

    Of course, VA will adamantly deny that there is any hint of disgruntled VA employees "taking revenge" on Veterans by denying it.  

    1. Really?  Ok, you go to a restaurant TWICE.  The first time you get a really attentive pleasant waitress.  

     2.The second time you get a distasteful, hatefull waitress insistent on telling YOU how to be a "good customer"...and how you are all wrong at being a good customer.   

       Which of these will get more tips?  Which one will YOU tip more?  

        Even if we tried not to be biased, it would difficult to give waitress 2, more than just a minimal tip, or just deny and give no tip at all.  Can you really blame the customer?  In a similar way, be pleasant to your VA employee, and dont try to tell them how to do their job.  It can be offensive in some circumstances.  Be generous with praise, and stingy with insults.  

      It is human nature to want to help someone you consider "pleasant", and, not so much to help someone you think is offensive.  

      "Being smart" is over rated.  I have been told "Im really smart" for years.  And, its not all that great..you have a high standard to live up to, and people love to "call out" people who were/are/should be intelligent, but who make one or more dumb mistakes.  We all make dumb mistakes.  Trying to tell a 20 year employee how to do their job, when you have zero experience is a easy way to alienate the person YOU NEED to help you.  In short, its a dumb mistake.  

      Instead, I would MUCH rather people underestimate my intelligence level.  If my goal is "winning" it does not help to caution others to "bring their A game", by letting on you are a genius.  

      Instead, I often "dumb down".  My brother, used to get very mad if I used words he did not understand.  

      (that was pretty easy, too, to use words he did not understand).  

      Once, I let slip the term "Optimal Interceptor Allocation" instead of "best part for the task".  He said, "I dont know what you just called me, but wanna step outside and say it again? "  

      Well, my big brother was 180 pounds of pure muscle and speed..and I had no desire to fight him, as those who did mostly took a trip in an ambulance to a hospital.  I would rather try to pet an angry Grizzly bear momma's cubs. ..I may be able to out run the bear.  

Edited by broncovet
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