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Need Documentation On New Vets Getting Quicker Va Attention



Would someone please direct me to the hadit post that has the actual VA letter that outlines that the new vets are being fast tracked in the VA claims process over us older vets?

I know I read a letter embedded in a post late the other night but I forgot to print it. The poster wrote something along the lines of "you are behind the times, here is the VA letter that outlines the fast tracking of new veterans" and then they posted the letter. It was the actual VA letter outlining the process to fast track new vets and there were several comments about it.

I tried running a search but couldn't locate it so I must not have used the right search words. I also tried looking at several folks recent postings but couldn't find it so it must be embedded in an older post. I have just spent the last hour looking for it but can't locate it so I am at the end of my rope and need help on this.

I am going to talk to my civilian shrink on Thursday morning and I want to take it with me to show him why it is essential that he write his narrative in such a way as to address the things the rater will be looking for. I don't think he understands or appreciates what I am up against so I have printed off a couple of articles that show how messed up the VA is (an article in CEO magazine said the VA makes mistakes on 12% of claims, I thought that number sounded low) and I would like to be able to show him why it is imperative that he write up the narrative in an outline form that the rater can match up to the things they rate you on.

Having the VA letter that shows that as an older veteran I am being pushed to the back of the line will hopefully convince him that I am not just paranoid but am simply trying to do everything humanly possible to get the VA to understand where my symptoms fall out and rate me accordingly. He's a good guy but a civilian and has no clue how the whole process works.

My thanks in advance for pointing me in the direction of the hadit post that has the VA letter that instructs the VA to fast track the new veterans first.



Edited by tssnave (see edit history)
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Guest jangrin


I believe it is under Special Alert FYI started by Spike. I think the information was actually posted by Betrayed. It shouldn't be too hard to find. If this is what you were searching for. Go to "view new posts" scroll down to Spikes topic. It should be found on page one or two of the recent posts in the Claims and Benefits research section. I hope this helps.


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Thank you, thank you, thank you! I spent over an hour earlier today trying to find this and just couldn't locate it. I appreciate your quick reply.

I will copy it and take it with me on Thursday to help convince the doc that the easier he makes it for the rater to line up my symptoms with the rating schedule the better it will be for my claim since it's already at the back of the line because I served in the late 70s, early 80s.

I fail to understand the rationale for this ruling giving new vets top priority. Like other posters, I assume it is because they have the public sympathy and support. Also, I assume that they, their families, and friends can bring more political pressure on the VA than us older vets who are scattered to the four winds and doing the best we can with whatever our sc disability is.

As part of your outbriefing now the Army talks to you about VA disabilities and what "service connected" means. There's even a DAV rep on post. When I got out they didn't tell us anything. Oh well. I don't hold it against the young guys. Perhaps the only advantage to being older is supposedly we're more patient. The VA certainly tests our patience, that's for sure.

Thanks again, I really appreciate the help.


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tssnave- there has been considerable discussion here as to what an IMO should contain.

A search under independent medical opinions should bring all that up.

The VA will reject IMos that lack this criteria-

by the same token a veteran can reject with evidence and argument any VA medical opinion that also does not meet this criteria-

In most cases the doc needs all service records-SMRs, and all VA and private medical records.

The doctor should give a complete statement as to their background and how this qualifies them to render an IMO.

They should state their opinion and support it with a full medical rationale.

(meaning in many cases they refer here to specific medical records or to a specific stressor incident etc-

They should in some cases rule out any other know etiology but for service- for the disability-

they should provide a treatise or abstract ( or just quote it and cite the source if possible to support their IMO-depending on the type of claim)

And then make the More than likely statement that supports the nexus factor.

I am sure their is more in the IMO discussions here- I am only looking at my IMOs and what they covered.

The nexus statement is not confirmation of a stressor.

It can confirm inservice events that more than likely caused the present disability.

If the SMRs reveal manifestation of present physical or mental problems-

this supports an IMO.

In other cases -without combat awards- the stressor has to be proven by the veteran even if they have the more then likely statement from a doc-

(unless the doctor was there then and can provide an eyewitness account of the vet's specific stressor)

I only mention all this from time to time because I live near a VAMC and as soon as a vet gets a PTSD diagnosis they sometimes think that is all they need.They might have accumulated reams of medical shrink stuff too with VA-but without the combat awards- they need to prove the stressor.


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I just went over some of your posts tssnave-

have you filed for Reconsideration or is the IMO to be attached to that request?

Also you mentioned TDIU-

It would be a good idea to get a statement in support of the TDIU from your shrink too if the medical evidence in the shrinks opinion warrants TDIU-

I certainly agree with what you said- that -with the rating schedule before the IMO doc-and the medical evidence you have that supports a higher rating ---that could help a VA rater-

but I dont think print out about the new vets for the doc will help get you a faster rating.

I didnt get that point-

If you can isolate the specific medical evidence and put tabs on it- along with all your other stuff-(like the rating schedule) I would think that -with a cover letter showing the doc what you specifically need in an IMO- it will help you a great deal.

Although I discussed my situation in email and by phone with my IMO doc-

I also prepared the medical evidence so that it was easy for him to review and I sent a cover letter with colored tab references to what he

specifically needed.

For an additional IMO I sent the SSOC that he combatted with medical evidence.

I dont know if we mention this facet of IMos much-

if you are attempting to knock down a SOC or SSOC that contains inaccurate or deficient medical evidence from a VA doctor-

the IMO doc should have the actual SSOC and actual C & P medical report -in order to shape an opinion that can circumvent the VA's opinion.I just love what my last IMO stated clearly that the VA doctor's opinion "was medically inaccurate" and this was expanded with full medical rationale as to why it was inaccurate-point by point.

As a layperson I had already rebutted the VA medical inaccuracies-

yet it was good to get a real doctor to agree with these inaccuracies too.

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Thanks for weighing in on this and reviewing my previous posts. I appreciate your due diligence in helping me and other veterans.

I am in the process of getting new evidence to try to get my rating increased to 70%. I haven’t submitted a request for reconsideration yet but want to submit it before 1 year is up to get it back dated to my original claim date. I am not filing a NOD because I think they made a decent determination given the information they had. I’m still in the process of getting the IMO, or in my case, a narrative of my symptoms from a civilian psychologist so the VA can have the information they need to appropriately rate my claim.

My claim was approved so nexus and service connection has been addressed.

I was awarded 50% for mental disorder based on a very poor C&P exam. Part of it was the way the exam was given (close ended questions, questions that didn’t fully cover what the raters evaluate on) and part of it was me (didn’t realize I needed to explain how each answer related to my illness, was depressed during the interview and just didn’t put things together very well).

So, I am not trying to knock down anything the C&P exam has in it, I am simply trying to ADD to the information in the C&P exam. Since the examiner noted I had trouble concentrating during the exam I assume the VA will understand why I need to provide this additional evidence.

My decision letter states they couldn’t assign a higher rating because I didn’t show how I was unable to live independently. The C&P examiner did ask me if I had panic attacks (nope) but didn’t ask how depression affected my ability to function independently.

So, I realized that my symptoms fall squarely out in the 70% area of the rating schedule; I had just not expressed that to the C&P examiner. Based on the C&P exam 50% is understandable.

So, my DAV rep told me to go to a private psychologist, which I’m in the process of doing, and have him write a narrative of how my illness affects my ability to live independently.

There were also some other areas of the exam that I want to clarify with the civilian psychologist like how it impairs my social life (we just glossed right over that during the C&P exam).

So, I have my last appointment with the doc this week (I’ll have spent 5 hours talking with him as opposed to the less than 1 hour talking to the C&P examiner).

He has agreed to write a narrative and I believe he will be amenable to writing it in such a way that it clearly addresses the living independently issue. This is the only issue they cited as being the reason they couldn’t rate me higher.

They had a paragraph in the decision letter that reads:

To assign a greater evaluation, there must be …….then they listed the rating schedule for 70%....They concluded the paragraph by stating:

“We cannot grant a higher evaluation at this time because this condition does not affect your ability to function independently.”

I have given him all of my records as well as a copy of the decision letter. Hopefully he will write his narrative in such a way that it will address the living independently issue. I took my spouse with me for all but one hour of our talks to collaborate my claim.

As for why I was looking for the letter about younger vets getting put at the front of the line – when I first called this doctor (and he was the 3rd or 4th one I talked to, all of the others wanted me to come in for continued treatment but were not willing to do an evaluation – he was the only psychologist I could find locally to talk with me) he told me that he would talk with me but not do an evaluation. Since he was the only one willing to even talk with me and I don’t drive by myself farther than a 8 mile radius I went ahead to see him. I got the impression on the phone he thought I was trying to scam the VA or SS (he said something about SS even though I’m not even eligible to get SS disability because I haven’t worked in the last 7 years).

However, when I came in with 25 years worth of treatment notes his attitude changed. He even went so far as to ask me at our last session how he should write up the session notes. However, because of his initially telling me that he wouldn’t write a disability claim narrative, since this is what the DAV is telling me we need, when I talk to him this week and let him know that the DAV said to write a narrative that goes along the lines of the rating schedule, I wanted to be able to show him that the whole VA process is a royal pain and that the easier we make it for them the better it will be.

I am still not certain if he will stick by his first comment that he won’t write a narrative for a disability claim or if he will come through with his query on how to write up the claim and do it the way the DAV wants him to which is a narrative that goes line and verse down the rating schedule.

I do plan to ask him to begin the narrative with the independent living documentation and ask him to address the unemployability.

The Decision Letter sates “This has impaired your ability to maintain employment” and I want to flesh that out with more solid information than I gave the C&P examiner.

I also got a letter from the CPA who has done our taxes attesting to my earned income during the last 9 years (no income 2006 – 2001, < $4,500 in 2000, and nothing in 1999 and 1998) and I plan to submit that as well.

I tried to get a copy of my C&P exam but it was done electronically and the outpatient clinic wouldn’t give me one and referred me to the VA. I am waiting to request my file if I get in a bind with something so I don’t wind up having to pay a copy charge on it.

I think that covers all your questions. Right now I am just hoping the psychologist will be willing to write his narrative in alignment with the rating schedule. Otherwise I will be out big bucks and have to start over and it is gut wrenching to have to talk about everything over and over and over again.

Any suggestions or advice for me at this point in the process?

Thanks again,


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Why would a psychiatrist carry more weight with the VA when my VA C&P exam was done by a psychologist? For that matter, "a psychology intern under close supervision of an attending psychiatrist or psychologist" could have done my VA C&P. What, do they want me to spend more money on my own examination than they are willing to??!!?

I spent several days finding a psychologist who would even work with me on this. I still haven't seen a report and I'm out several hundred dollars already. If this guy doesn't work out I guess I could go to a psychiatrist. The psychologist costs $125/hr no matter if he's talking to me or writing a report. I shudder to think what the hourly rate of a psychiatrist is and how hard it will be to find one who will work with me on a VA claim.

Several psychologists I talked to didn't want to do anything short term, they only wanted to know if I had insurance and was looking to get into counseling. I understand they are businessmen so I didn't take it personally but what a pain.

The other idea is that I could ask my primary care physician to sign off on a form the DAV faxed to me that has the rating schedule for 70% and 100% and see if she will check off the 70%. I hadn't really planned to do this since it would be another $100 for an office visit but will reconsider if you or others on the board think it is vital to have an MD of one kind or another sign off on the rating schedule.

I would think a psychologist is better trained in mental disorders than a primary care doctor. I would also hope (ok, I've read this board too long now to bet on the maximum effective range of my hope that the VA would do things in a logcial way) that the VA would accept evidence from an independent examiner who is as equally qualified as the VA C&P examiner.

Common sense should prevail on this one but if you or others have experience that says otherwise, please tell me now and I'll fork over the bucks and get a pyschiatrist to weigh in on the matter.

I'll be in the 100% schedular category for mental illness from dealing with the VA before this whole thing is said and done. GRRRRRR!



Edited by tssnave (see edit history)
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