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New letter from VA, Aid and Attendance.

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broncovet

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I got a new letter from VA, which states, in relevant part, "I could be eligible for disability benefits, under the new (pact law)".  

I have no idea why they sent that letter, Im already 100 percent P and T, plus SMC S and there really "are NOT" any additional benefits availble to me, with an exception of Aid and Attendance, which Im not persuing at the present.  

I had applied for A and A, in the past because, the criteria so states:

Quote

 incapacity, physical or mental, which requires care or assistance on a regular basis to protect the claimant from hazards or dangers incident to his or her daily environment.

My spouse, a nurse, has to remind me to take my pills.  I have forgotten, in the past and wound up in the hosptial.  

I dont do well without my meds, and I reguraly forget them without my spouses help.  

Further, the regulation states:

Quote

 

c) Attendance by relative. The performance of the necessary aid and attendance service by a relative of the beneficiary or other member of his or her household will not prevent the granting of the additional allowance.

 

 

 

 

Source:  Criteria for Aid and Attendance:

https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/38/3.352

The VA does not interpret the regulation like I do, and denied A and A.  The reason is VA (has or had) a service where they call Veterans daily to remind them of stuff like this.  The calls were irritating robo calls, and mostly not useful.  So, I let it go, and did not aggressively appeal.  One reason:

    You see, I know stuff.  The effective date of SMC is "not necessarily" the date you applied, but rather the facts found (when the doc said you meet the applicable criteria).  Of course, the doc does not make benefits decisions, BUT, if he documents that my symptoms (eventually result in additional SMC), then the VA will have to use his "facts found" as my effective date.  

     So, if I get A and A later, the date I applied wont matter.  What matters is the date the doc said I meet the criterias symptoms.  

    Knowledge is power, and VA does their best to keep us uninformed.  

Did anyone else get a similar letter?

    Most likely:  The letter is a form letter, and pretty much means nothing.  But, I may have missed something?  

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While I do agree with broken soldier, I wish the system is perfect but its not.  For example, "in battle injuries" are often not documented, and further, "not every military clerk", gets the documentation correct as far as your period of service and where you were.  

At least one well known Veterans advocate was told "he did not get shot" in Vietnam, that there is no record of treatment.  It may have had something to do with being airlifted out and treated in another country because there was no GI hospital available at that time.  

Medics, in battle, often have neither the time, nor the resources to document every wound in battle.  Instead, they patch him up, try to keep him alive, and immediately  move on to the next troop screaming for help.  

 

 

 

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We are required to notify all PACT Act-era veterans under PACT guidelines. If you are already 100% P&T and SMC S and arent actively pursuing a claim or an appeal we still have to send it. Likely yours was a letter generated automatically because unless you were actively seeking a benefit there would be no reason for a human to send you the letter, but the computer system identifies based on several criteria and for those veterans not actively seeking a benefit, sends the notice.

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That's what I thought.  Its a generic letter sent to everyone, it just has my name on it.  I wonder how many trees gave up their life to send this useless letter?  

Incredibly, VA wont tell vets stuff we REALLY need to know, such as what percent of first time claimants are denied, how long does it really take to get your cfile, how to get a copy of your c and p exam released, etc. etc.  

But, JUNK we dont need, they send us that by the bushel basketfull.  An example of government waste.  Computer generated meaningless letters.  In the real world, that is called "spam".  

The problem is, VA can send you a real letter, and you really need to respond.  

Edited by broncovet
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Useless to you, maybe, but not to the tens of thousands of others that now fall into this class. We don't know your mind or what you want to file or not file for. Anyway, we didn't have a choice. Congress passed it, then mandated that we notify everyone in the identified class.

We also have to develop any claim in that time period so that we mark any contention that wouldn't be related in any way to exposure as exempt, and then document how, with documented research of your area of operation and how the contention is not related to toxic exposure from that area. So hangnails and claimed physical contentions, and MH issues that you claim directly due to injury or other things still have to be ruled out for that contention for toxic exposure. So it adds an average of almost an hour, sometimes more, per claim even if it's obvious you weren't exposed to anything or that exposure wouldn't cause it.

 For contentions that are covered by toxic exposure we have to type up a potential exposure report that averages 2-3 pgs to the examiner for each exam. 

We'll do it, but Congress didn't think or care about the extra time it would take to type up these reports for contentions that aren't covered by PACT just to say they aren't, but also still wants there to not be a back log. 

 

Not everything is the VAs fault. 

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I feel left out no letter. Or maybe they just haven't gotten to my letter of the last name.  Mine will be a complicated one anyway with exposures in different parts of the world. I haven't looked in to it how do you sign up to get tested? It seamed like when you ask about it before the PACT Act you had to prove that you were exposed to get tested.

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You don't. We have access to a multi service database created by the DOD. We can see where you were stationed, what you were exposed to, so long as DOD has it in there. It's all presumpive if you were 1.there, 2. Have a condition on the list, 3. Within the time frames.

 

It's based on totality of exposure. Some of the reports I've printed to pdf are a hundred pages long. Lots of repetition, but still, the reports are pretty thorough.

Edited by brokensoldier244th
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