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    • A bit about Tbird and HadIt.com for those who've asked...

      The following is on my About page, but some have been asking how this all happened. So here is my little story. Tbird US Navy 1983 – 1990 E-6 HadIt.com the website domain registered Jan 20, 1997 the domain is registered and paid for through Jan 21, 2023 at which time I plan to register it for another 15 years Lord willing and the creek don't rise. I guess the best place to start is Jan 1991; I had gotten out of the navy Dec 1990. At my separation seminar, there was a DAV rep Jim Milton he told us to bring our medical records in and he would look through them for us and let us know if we should file a claim with the VA. Well, bless his heart, he opened my medical file, reads the first insert, looks me straight in the eye, and says you will be 50% for the rest of your life and he would file the claim for me. 50% was for surgery I had in the service. True to his word he met with me and talked with me for a long time filled out my paper work and urged me to file for PTSD. I would not file the PTSD claim, nor even discuss it. By Feb 1991 I had moved to the San Francisco bay area and was staying at a friends apartment and pretty much I was just a puddle. In desperation one night I called suicide hot line, I had no job, no idea about going to the VA. They talked with me for a long time and explained to me that I could go to the local VA hospital even if I did not have insurance. Now, I know what you are thinking if I was 50% why didn't I just go to the VA in the first place, two reasons 1, this was Feb 1991 and the 50% didn't come till May and 2, even if it had come through it is unlikely that I would have had the mental acuity at the time to put the two together. I relate this here because it is where so many of our brothers and sisters are coming from, perhaps where you started. Fuzzy and unsure, in pain and sometimes homeless they come to the VA hospital for help. And that is where I ended up. Up to the pysch ward I went, blah, blah, blah, a few days later I was released with a promise of a call from the out patient program, which I would soon be entering. Blah, blah, blah, after many missed communications, and no call backs I was at the Day Hospital everyday M-F. And this brothers and sisters is where I began to learn and formulate my plan for HadIt.com. Veterans, veterans everywhere…I spent a year in the day hospital and about another year at a sheltered workshop before I got back on my feet. So I just talked to veterans everyday waiting for appointments, waiting for prescriptions, waiting for a vet rep and I started to learn the system. While in the navy I was data analyst and had to learn a 5 volume manual and just about anything you were suppose to do was in that manual. So I figured there must be a manual on how to do a VA claim or at the very least regulations. So I found out about the Code of Federal Regulations, United States Code, Veterans Affairs Manuals and so on and so forth. Of course this was 1991/1992 I was living in a tiny studio apartment in a particularly bad neighborhood, working in a sheltered workshop making a nickel per envelope I stuffed throw in PTSD and you will see that it was a difficult task for me to get somewhere where they had copies of these, let alone that they would let me look at. And there was so much knowledge around me, it was like the gold rush in those days, I could just sit on a bench a veteran would sit down next to me a little conversation later I had another nugget, I made copious notes. Phone numbers to call, ask for this guy or that guy he'll give you the straight scoop and they'd slip me a piece of paper with a number on it. You want to read this regulation or that one and another slip of paper into my hand. I spent a lot of time on those benches watching the squirrels they gathered their nuts and I gathered mine :) So I'm thinking I could put a little handbook together print it out and hand it out at the VA. Or perhaps fliers. Still formulating, time goes by, 1994/1995 I am being treated for PTSD regularly and doing and feeling much better and I go to work for a company as a marketing systems analyst and I discover the internet. Well let me tell you that was perhaps one of the most significant life changing events I have ever experienced. And I might add finally a positive one :) It seemed only natural to me that surely there must be a website that contained all the knowledge I wanted, well as it turned out not so much, lots of stuff but I wanted to get straight to the claims information and there was a lot of stuff to wade through to get to it. So taking my lesson from the squirrels earlier I started to gather, gather, gather…and learn HTML and work as a marketing systems analyst and work my claim. 1996/1997 major PTSD cork blows and unemployed. Working my claim, working the website. 20 Jan 1997 register HadIt.com domain name right after getting off the phone with the VA and saying I've had it with this. As fate would have it the old DAV board goes down just as mine opens up and folks start to wander in. So HadIt.com has two main components the website which supports the discussion board with links, articles, research resources etc. The website starts to grow, I can't tell you how many times I had to switch servers for space and features. I continue on a downward trend and in 1998 ended up back home in St Louis living in my sisters basement in therapy and working it, I swear I would have swung a dead chicken around my head at midnight naked if I thought it would have helped. The website continued to do great during this time, I just stayed in the basement bought new software, new books, and learned how to make things work and I continued to use this knowledge to make HadIt.com better. My 100% finally came through from the VA and I had a friend who is an advocate who helped me thru my SSDI claim, he was literally at my side thru the entire process and that came through for me. My therapist and sister continued to try and get me to leave the basement, but to no avail. At some point in 1998 or 1999 I put a counter on the website and was shocked to discover how many visitors we were getting. Time goes by my sister gets married and I move from the basement to the upstairs, there is much celebration that Aunt T is living in the light again. More time goes by and I settle into my life in St Louis and spend more time on the site trying new things, finding more information. 2003 I buy my own home VA loan. For years now I have just considered HadIt.com my job and I get up every morning go to the office and work for several hours, take an afternoon break and see where the rest of day takes me. I have a place in the office to use the computer and a comfortable to place to read journals and articles and take notes. Blah, blah, blah so that is my story and HadIt.com's intertwined.
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      VA Training and Fast Letter Forum Index The following is the index with links to the various Training and Fast Letters plus a few miscellaneous. These letters are not necessarily in the original formatting. I have tried to present them in an easy-to-read form instead of some forms as originally presented. Some of the paragraphs were WAAAAYYY too long. lol - HadIt.com Member fanaticbooks Something to be aware.... Some of these letters may be rescinded, outdated, or otherwise no longer viable. I have still included them because sometimes they provide additional insight or just plain more information than the newest version. Use them wisely. The oldest letters will display at the bottom with the latest letters displayed at the top, all in sequential numbers. Coding of the letters... FL = Fast Letter TL = Training Letter First two numbers = last two digits of year of origin Training Letter http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40694-va-tl-00-07/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40693-va-tl-00-06/ Fast Letter Number Title http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/44262-va-fl-11-15/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/44260-va-fl-11-13/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/44261-va-fl-11-11/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/44310-va-fl-11-09/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/42151-va-fl-11-03/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40957-va-fl-10-49/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40958-va-fl-10-46/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40959-va-fl-10-45/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40960-va-fl-10-42/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40961-va-fl-10-39/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40962-va-fl-10-35/ 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Denied Increase In Ptsd And Tdiu

12 posts in this topic

Posted

Received my envelope recently and needed time to think about claims. As I reported earlier I have a 50% rating for PTSD and since I do receive disability from social security I put in for TDIU.I don't think SS gave disability on PTSD alone, I just wanted to mention that. I also had a claim in for tinnitis which was granted so now I am at 60%. I was denied an increase in PTSD because they noted my degree of PTSD to them continues to most closely correspond with a 50% evaluations based on my symptoms and feelings.I felt my C&P went very well, my VSO also stated he thought the intern wrote up a good report, the only exception was she rated my gaf at 57 when it's been consistently lower around 50.I continue to take meds and go weekly to group therapy.I mentioned that I have limited social contact with the exception that I enjoy meeting weekly with other Vets and they made mention of that so I got blackballed for that statement.What I meant was that we PTSD vets look forward to group.

I thought I had a good case for uneployability, plenty of employer documentation and C&P doc stated that I was unemployable due to my PTSD.

I did file an NOD, so now I'll have a long wait.

Any input or encouragement would be appreciated.

Stever

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Posted

You cant rely on a GAF score as the VA looks at the whole picture.

But this concerns me-

"C&P doc stated that I was unemployable due to my PTSD."

What medical rationale did the VA use in the decision to go against their own C & P doctor's positive statement? That sure doesn't happen often.

"plenty of employer documentation"

I assume this regarded how your PTSD affected your work performance?

Did the VA list and fully consider this as evidence?

If you go some retro for the tinnitus have you considered getting an IMO from an independent shrink?

Since the SSDI is not solely for the PTSD is there any other disability included in the SSDI report that could potentially be service connected?

Unfortunately the rating might well be correct at 50% when they compared the medical evidence they have to the Schedule of Ratings.

If your PTSD meds are ever increased in dosage, that could indicate need for higher rating.

"go weekly to group therapy." DO you also see a VA shrink one to one?

If you mean by group- a vet center (I volunteered at a vet center with the PTSD combat group and it changed my entire life)

I dont feel the VA blackballed you because you enjoy the group-

but I think a VA psychologist/psychiatrist would have possibly more ability to really gauge your symptoms as to severity than any documentation from the group leader.

At the combat PTSD group meetings I was at (I am a civilian but the vets voted me to attend)

nothing was documented at all.

It was the real Nam nitty gritty sometimes and then again many of the vets would not reveal too much.

If PTSD gives a vet anger problems,often only their spouse or significant other can really reveal that with a 'buddy statement'.

Many VA docs don't even know there are serious domestic problems at home due to PTSD anger issues, and only find out if they also have input from a family member.

I am not saying this regards you at all. Something for other PTSD vets to think about.

Also, have you ever applied for VA VocRehab and been turned down solely for your PTSD? If so this is obvious strong documentation of unemployability due to PTSD.

The C & P doctor had to have a rationale for his/her statement.I am surprised the VA rejected that opinion for TDIU.

Were you ever given the Combat related MMPI?

Maybe the C & P doc used those results and the rater overlooked them?

Can you scan and attach the decision here" (cover personal identifying stuff)and maybe we can help advise more as to how to appeal this?

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Posted

Sorry to learn of VA turning you down. Have you applied for Social Security Disability. If you are getting SSD it would bolster your claim. Your C&P indicates your C&P Doc thinks that you can't work.

If it was my claim I would read the Reasons and Basis with a fine tooth comb. You might see if your VA Doc would be willing to help.

Good Luck

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Posted

Thanks Berta and Pete

I will provide more information later, Thanks to you I noticed on the SOC RE: Evidence they have only my Psychiatric exam dated 11-29-11 but not the C&P exam that I had on 12-01-11 with the general Doctor who stated in his report that I was Unemployable.There is no mention of this what so ever.Could this be an error on va's side? Did they not read this follow up report.This was disturbing because they said that your claim for TDIU was denied because the evidence does not show you are unable to secure or follow a substanially gainful occupation as a result of service connected disabilities.

This is what that Dr said.

The review of the patient's clinical record and the personal medical history indicate that this patient is unable to continue performing activities consistent with his work experience and prior training in order to maintain a gainful employment. The patient is unemployable at least as likely as not secondary to mental changes secondary to exposure to traumatic events during the Vietnam war.

Stever

PS more to follow

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Posted

Talked to vso and he said everything is right on my claim, I guess I was barking up the wrong tree, I still don't understand it. As stated I'll try to send more info later and have you all look at it

Stever

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Posted

Something to attack your recent denial in your case would be Hattlestad v. Brown, 5 vet.app.395(1993) and Blackburn v. brown, 4 vet.app. 524(1993) and VA Training letter 10-07, sept.14, 2010. You already have the va examiner's strong opinion as strong evidence of unemployability.Pound this evidence and these precedents rulings into your arguments on appeal and eventually someone who can READ AND COMPREHEND EVIDENCE will see this and do the right thing in your case.Tdiu cases are supposed to be considered on a case by case theory. The key to your situation would be that in determining entitlement to TDIU evaluations, a CLEAR explanation requires analysis of the CURRENT DEGREE OF UNEMPLOYABILITY ATTRIBUTABLE to the SERVICE-CONNECTED condition as compared to the degree of UNEMPLOYABILITY ATTRIBUTABLE to the NON-SERVICE CONNECTED CONDITION(S).

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Posted

It looks like you have a 50% and a 10% with a total of 60%. To qualify for schedular IU you need specific %. You need one service connected disability evaluated at 60% or more OR one at 40% or more and another condition which when combined with the 40% equals 70%. So they may not have ignored to doctors opinion, but determined that due to your current evaluation you don qualify. I grabed this from the VA website.

What Is Individual Unemployability?

Individual Unemployability is a part of VA’s disability compensation program that allows VA to pay certain veterans compensation at the 100% rate, even though VA has not rated their service-connected disabilities at the total level.

What Is the Eligibility Criteria for Individual Unemployability?

A veteran must be unable to maintain substantially gainful employment as a result of his/her service-connected disabilities. Additionally, a veteran must have:

  • One service-connected disability ratable at 60 percent or more, OR

    • Two or more service-connected disabilities, at least one disability ratable at 40 percent or more with a combined rating of 70 percent or more.

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Posted

Thanks for the input, I knew with only 50% I didn't meet the requirements, that's why I put in for IU with the hope I would get an increase to 70%.since I am on SSD.

Stever

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Posted

It looks like you have a 50% and a 10% with a total of 60%. To qualify for schedular IU you need specific %. You need one service connected disability evaluated at 60% or more OR one at 40% or more and another condition which when combined with the 40% equals 70%. So they may not have ignored to doctors opinion, but determined that due to your current evaluation you don qualify. I grabed this from the VA website.

What Is Individual Unemployability?

Individual Unemployability is a part of VA’s disability compensation program that allows VA to pay certain veterans compensation at the 100% rate, even though VA has not rated their service-connected disabilities at the total level.

What Is the Eligibility Criteria for Individual Unemployability?

A veteran must be unable to maintain substantially gainful employment as a result of his/her service-connected disabilities. Additionally, a veteran must have:

  • One service-connected disability ratable at 60 percent or more, OR

    • Two or more service-connected disabilities, at least one disability ratable at 40 percent or more with a combined rating of 70 percent or more.

    i got iu with a 60 percent overall disability, including 40 percent for my back!

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Posted

It looks like you have a 50% and a 10% with a total of 60%. To qualify for schedular IU you need specific %. You need one service connected disability evaluated at 60% or more OR one at 40% or more and another condition which when combined with the 40% equals 70%. So they may not have ignored to doctors opinion, but determined that due to your current evaluation you don qualify. I grabed this from the VA website.

What Is Individual Unemployability?

Individual Unemployability is a part of VA’s disability compensation program that allows VA to pay certain veterans compensation at the 100% rate, even though VA has not rated their service-connected disabilities at the total level.

What Is the Eligibility Criteria for Individual Unemployability?

A veteran must be unable to maintain substantially gainful employment as a result of his/her service-connected disabilities. Additionally, a veteran must have:

  • One service-connected disability ratable at 60 percent or more, OR

    • Two or more service-connected disabilities, at least one disability ratable at 40 percent or more with a combined rating of 70 percent or more.
    • But that is only part A information of the reg.

      Part B doesn't always get a grant for IU - but sometimes it does.

      http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid=a676d0cdb096625f21dd042abde9ee5f&rgn=div8&view=text&node=38:1.0.1.1.5.1.98.11&idno=38

      38 CFR 4.16 B states :

      (b) It is the established policy of the Department of Veterans Affairs that all veterans who are unable to secure and follow a substantially gainful occupation by reason of service-connected disabilities shall be rated totally disabled. Therefore, rating boards should submit to the Director, Compensation and Pension Service, for extra-schedular consideration all cases of veterans who are unemployable by reason of service-connected disabilities, but who fail to meet the percentage standards set forth in paragraph (a) of this section. The rating board will include a full statement as to the veteran's service-connected disabilities, employment history, educational and vocational attainment and all other factors having a bearing on the issue.

      [40 FR 42535, Sept. 15, 1975, as amended at 54 FR 4281, Jan. 30, 1989; 55 FR 31580, Aug. 3, 1990; 58 FR 39664, July 26, 1993; 61 FR 52700, Oct. 8, 1996]

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Posted

Hello all, I put in for an increase in my disability and received a C&P appointment about 8 months ago. I recently received a letter from VA asking me if i had anything else to add to my case or they will begin the rating process. Today, i received another letter from MSLA stating that they are going to hold two more appointments for me, one is a general appointment (don't know what that is) the other one is for (Mental Health) since I'm already service- connected with PTSD. Could any tell me what this mean!

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Posted

A "general " C&P is just that, a medical C&P. What may be interesting is that you may find that the "general" C&P is actually limited to whatever the RO requested.

Pay particular attention to questions concerning existing rated disabilities, and any that you have applied for. If it's a general C&P in truth, any other non rated issues/conditions

can be assessed (or ignored) by the examiner.

The Mental Health C&P is a separate C&P (obviously). Both may be conducted the same day if so scheduled.

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