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    • How to get your questions answered.

      How to get your questions answered. A few observations, and requests of all members. All folks who come here are volunteers who do this on their own time and their own dime.To avoid burning out our best contributors please follow these guidelinesf you are reading a post and it reminds you of a question you want to ask, start a new topic, if you place your question in someone thread it will be difficult to distinguish your question from the original poster, you will get better results posting a new topic with your question. 1. Before Posting please do a search and see if your question has already been answered. If you find the answer print it out and put it in a file to use as a reference file, I find this helpful myself. 2. If you can not find the answer and you do post a question, please print out those answers and refer to them to avoid duplicate questions. 3. Refer to the Frequently Asked Questions4. Duplicate questions will come up from time to time but the keeping them to the minimum will lighten the load on the regular volunteers.5. Respect folks privacy do not request their personal phone numbers for claims help, it is inappropriate and not why they are here.6. Keep the topics focused on veterans issues, in closing Search first Search ... Ask second.it may save a lot of time or at the very least enlighten you.
    • Listen Live Every Wed 5:30 PM CST to SVR Radio, Veterans Issues are discussed with various guests.

      Listen Live Every Wed 5:30 PM CST to SVR Radio, Veterans Issues are discussed with various guests. Please check the little home I am carving out for our SVR partners. http://www.hadit.com/svr.html
    • 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.
    • HadIt.com Pass It On Cards

      Hi I've updated our HadIt.com Pass It On Cards. They are in a PDF format you can print them out cut them there are 12 to a page. If you have found HadIt.com helpful and would like to pass it on to other veterans this is an easy way to do it.I hope you find them helpful, feel free to leave a few anywhere veterans gather, veterans centers, veterans hospitals, public libraries, be creative. Please make sure though, that if you want to leave some at any business you ask permission first.Here you go http://www.hadit.com...it_on_cards.pdf
    • VA Training and Fast Letter Forum Index

      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/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40963-va-fl-10-34/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40964-va-fl-10-32/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40966-va-fl-10-30/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40967-va-fl-10-26/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40968-va-fl-10-25/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40819-va-fl-10-24e1/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40818-va-fl-10-24/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40817-va-fl-10-22/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40814-va-fl-10-04/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40969-va-fl-10-03/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40812-va-fl-10-02/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40808-va-fl-09-52/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40806-va-fl-09-50/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40970-va-fl-09-41/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40971-va-fl-09-38/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40804-va-fl-09-33/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40972-va-fl-09-28/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40671-va-fl-09-27/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40973-va-fl-09-26/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40803-va-fl-09-25/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40802-va-fl-09-21e2/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40801-va-fl-09-21/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40799-va-fl-09-20/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40798-va-fl-09-17/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40974-va-fl-09-15/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40975-va-fl-09-13/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40797-va-fl-09-10e1/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40796-va-fl-09-10/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40795-va-fl-09-09/ http://www.hadit.com/forums/index.php?/topic/40976-va-fl-09-08/ 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  • 0

C-File Info

Question

Posted

I currently have a claim for TDIU pending at the Minneapolis VARO, which they forwarded to the Washington D.C. VARO, and then to a claims processing center in London, Kentucky. My question is this: I have not yet requested a copy of my C-File, and I am wondering if doing so would possibly set my claim further back on the calendar. Any help is much appreciated.

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7 answers to this question

Posted

It certainly could take some time away from the claim. It might only take 30 minutes for VA to copy it, but getting it to a copier could take weeks if not months.

With the 90% now, they had to consider you for TDIU at the time of that decision. Unless you were employed then.

Is this due to a NOD you filed on the 90% award or a separate claim for TDIU?

The 90% decision gave key reasons (if VA followed the regs) as to why they didn't consider you for TDIU or, if they did, exactly why they denied at that time-which is what you need to overcome now.

I am surprised they even farmed the claim out-I think you mean the AMC (Appeals Management Center) by Washington DC?

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Posted

I got my copy after I won and I am glad I did it that way. Lucked out as dumb as I was.

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Posted

Berta-Here are your comments and my responses:

It certainly could take some time away from the claim. It might only take 30 minutes for VA to copy it, but getting it to a copier could take weeks if not months.

With the 90% now, they had to consider you for TDIU at the time of that decision. Unless you were employed then. I was employed then, and there was no mention of TDIU anywhere in there decision letter.

Is this due to a NOD you filed on the 90% award or a separate claim for TDIU? A separate claim for TDIU. My back has gotten much worse, and have not worked now since March 22nd.

The 90% decision gave key reasons (if VA followed the regs) as to why they didn't consider you for TDIU or, if they did, exactly why they denied at that time-which is what you need to overcome now. Again, there was no mention of TDIU in the 90% decision letter of 2010.

I am surprised they even farmed the claim out-I think you mean the AMC (Appeals Management Center) by Washington DC? Letterhead says Veterans Service Center in DC. It may have been farmed out because my files are flagged due to being an employee of the Minneapolis VAMC for one year in 1987. I know that issue occasionally comes up when I go in for treatment.

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Posted

“Again, there was no mention of TDIU in the 90% decision letter of 2010.

OK ...they didnt have to mention TDIU because, as you stated, you were employed at that time.

“It may have been farmed out because my files are flagged due to being an employee of the Minneapolis VAMC for one year in 1987. I know that issue occasionally comes up when I go in for treatment.

Yes that is possible and even though years pass after a vet leaves VA employment sometimes they still farm out C &Ps too,to make sure they are not done at the same VAMC where the vet could have been employed.

I hoped you were able to follow advise in the TDIU forum here Rich, as to putting any side affects of the SC meds in the TDIU form ( Under Remarks one can refer them to a separate page for that.) I dont know how you even managed to work with 90%.

If I were you I would try to sit tight on this unless others disagree with me on the C file request as I would hate to see that hold up for you what I would certainly expect to be a TDIU award, based on , I assume, another C & P exam, since it has been about 2 years from the past one.

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Posted

Thanks Berta. As far as working while 90% rated, there wasn't much choice. I am now scheduled for left arm ulnar surgery on 7/30 and lumbar back surgery on 8/27-both at the Mpls VAMC. Hopefully this will help my TDIU claim. I am copying the letter from my wife that we sent with the claim that summarizes things quite well, in hopes it will help clarify my ramblings. Your thoughts and comments are very helpful and greatly appreciated.

April 2, 2012

Re:

To Whom It May Concern:

I submit this information regarding my husband, __________________.

Richard & I were married in 1970, while he was home on leave after his service in Viet Nam. He began having problems with high blood pressure in 1972 and 1973 before his tour of duty ended. Due to his young age, Richard’s high blood pressure was treated inconsistently until 1978, when, under the care of a new doctor, his heart was found to be unusually enlarged because of the chronic high blood pressure. Richard has been under doctor’s care for high blood pressure ever since.

Richard has had lower back problems our entire marriage since having a tower blown out from beneath him in Viet Nam. In the early years of our marriage, Richard’s symptoms varied from aching in his lower back, to an occasional “going out.” There was no specific movement or action that consistently caused a problem. In the past, he would lie down on the floor and elevate his legs from the knees down on a foot stool until the pain and discomfort was sufficiently relieved to get up from that position. It would usually resolve over a 6-8 hour period. He was generally prescribed 800mg ibuprofen for the pain and inflammation; not enough to mask the pain, but to relieve it somewhat and help reduce swelling. Richard rarely missed a day of work due to back pain; he learned to live with the constant aches.

About 1985, Richard was diagnosed with herniated discs as the cause of his lower back pain. He was given a series of exercises to do to help alleviate the pain. He continued taking the 800mg ibuprofen for discomfort. It was about this time that his right knee began giving him trouble as well.

In 1987 at the age of 36, Richard had his first heart event. It was in the very early morning hours and he said goodbye before going out the door. To my surprise, he came back in an hour later. He had been sitting in his vehicle the whole time. He explained that he felt terrible, but couldn’t identify what was wrong. He called the Doctor’s office as soon as they opened and got in to see the Dr. later that morning. Enzymes present in the blood test the doctor performed revealed he had had a mild heart attack.

In the mid-to-late 90’s, Richard’s back problems began to noticeably worsen. I had left my career to stay at home and take care of our adult son, Kevin, who was diagnosed with an extremely disabling form of multiple sclerosis in 1993. Ever mindful that he was the sole breadwinner at that time, Richard continued to live with the discomfort of his own back, “taking to the floor” when he needed to, and taking ibuprofen for the pain. He also had a prescription for Hydrocodone for pain, but only took it when he was at home for the evening or weekend and was experiencing considerable discomfort that was not relieved by ibuprofen.

In 2001, Richard was diagnosed with Coronary Artery Disease. He underwent an atherectomy and had a stent placed in his right coronary artery when a blockage was discovered during his “50-year old” physical. Emergency surgery was performed when the artery was found to be 99% blocked. Since that surgery, Richard’s medical care has included treatment for high cholesterol and triglycerides and carrying nitroglycerin for angina caused by ischemia.

As our son’s disease progressed, Richard was mostly unable to help with some of the more physical tasks, such as transfers, range of motion exercises, and helping to turn and position him. Bedridden and quadriplegic since 2006, our son Kevin passed in June of 2009.

As Richard’s chronic back condition appeared to worsen, in both 2009 and 2010, Richard sought opinions outside the VAMC. In addition to his lower lumbar region, MRI’s were done on his thoracic spinal area. Problems were identified in the thoracic area in addition to the L-4, L-5, S-1 that had always been at issue. During this time, a problem was also identified beginning in the cervical area of the spine. As the pain became more severe more frequently, I noticed some other symptoms appearing. If we were driving an hour or more away from home, Rich would have to stop frequently to get out and stretch. He began to experience more tingling and occasional numbness in his lower legs. There were times he experienced sharp pains down the back of his legs, usually on the right side. It was also about this time he started to experience erectile dysfunction. This has become a chronic problem for which he is unable to take medication.

Richard was diagnosed with Diabetes II in March of 2010, and has been taking medication for it ever since. He was also diagnosed with COPD which he also takes medication for.

Richard has worked as a Project Manager/Electrical Engineer for more than twenty-five years. This requires him to be at customer’s plants anywhere from 20% to 50% of the time on any given project. In 2010, Richard was working for Fluor/Plant Engineering Services at the Flint Hills Resources refinery. Being a refinery, the “field work” included having to climb stairs to the top of storage tanks up to 100 ft. high to obtain existing instrumentation information. Between Rich’s back pain, leg numbness and COPD, this became more and more difficult to do, having to stop several times on the way up and down, sometimes experiencing dizziness. Rich sought other employment in December of 2010 when he felt that his own safety, and perhaps the safety of others, could become an issue if he were to stay.

Richard began work at Malt-O-Meal in January of 2011. In the little more than a year that he’s been at Malt-O-Meal, he has had projects in their Northfield MN, Asheville NC and Tremonton UT plants. In March of this year, while at the plant in Northfield, Rich suddenly experienced excruciating back pain that took him down to the floor. After a bit, he managed to get up with help from a co-worker. The co-worker helped him out of the plant and assisted him with removing the sanitary coverings required to work in a food plant, including the shoe coverings. The pain was still so intense, Rich drove himself directly to the VAMC emergency room, instead of going back to the office.

The emergency room doctor at the VAMC basically put Richard on what used to be referred to as a “profile” in the military….no prolonged sitting or standing, and no prolonged standing on concrete. She said he could go back to work in one to three days, or as his pain allowed him to. I can say unequivocally that this back event is significantly worse than it’s ever been before. The pain and discomfort in his back has yet to resolve. He has been unable to bring his own leg up to rest on the other leg’s knee to tie his shoes, or bend all the way down to tie them; I assist him in this task. It takes a good ½ to 1 hour in the morning for him to stand completely upright after arising. While he has not lost bladder control, when he feels that he has to “go,” it’s urgent. The driveway to our home has a significant incline, and Richard now finds it nearly impossible to go down and check mail as maintaining his balance on the uneven surface causes him severe back pain.

When Richard informed his employers, both Malt-O-Meal and the Contract Engineering Company, of his physical restrictions, they both informed him that they would be unable to continue their working relationship with him under those conditions. All industrial and manufacturing facilities have concrete floors, and if Richard can only stand for short periods on concrete floors, he can longer do the jobs they would have hired him to do.

I have seen this honest, hard-working man work through any pain he may have been in to provide for his family all these years, and it is heartbreaking to now see him unable to work because of it.

Sincerely,

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Posted

Your wife made some good points in that letter.

Vietnam....DMIi and CAD ..ischemia .. are these service connected due to Agent Orange?

I am sure they are SCed by now but it pays to double check.

I forgot to add, are you going to apply for SSDI benefits too?

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Posted

Berta-

The DMII is agent orange related. They classified the ischemia as being coronary artery disease secondary to hypertension. Originally rated at 0%, then increased to 10%, then again to 60%.

Applied for SSDI at the same time as TDIU. Was denied in twenty days, and now have attorneys working on the appeal.

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