The Veteran's Administration (VA) is not your friend. I have heard this echoed by people within and associated with the VA. The VA is actually a self licking bureaucracy that makes work for itself.
If the VA were to provide more objective disability ratings earlier in the claims process, the number of appeals would be substantially reduced. Because the VA institutionally low balls veterans, the veteran is forced into a circular appeals process that takes four to 10 years or longer.
Rightardia is not and has never been an anti-government site. We think that the average American can expect more assistance form the government than they can from private enterprise.
But we We feel obligated to advise other veterans that VA criticism is well-deserved. The VA has corrupted the rating process and has been institutionally disregarding a precedent rulings from the Court of Appeals for Veteran's Claims (USCAVC).
If the VA were to rate a Veteran for hypothyroidism, the rating officer would start at the bottom of the rating scale and work up in a lock-step fashion.
For example if a vet did not produce medical evidence that he or she was constipated, they could not be rated higher than 10 per cent. I
f the vet had bradycardia, an irregular heart beat and other cardiac conditions due to the hypothyroidism and sleep problems related to sleep apnea and insomnia, the VA would ignore these 'criteria" and render a 10 per cent rating.
The VA likes to award the 10 per cent and 0 per cent ratings. In both cases, the Vet is now eligible for services at veteran's hospitals and clinics. He or she can also get service-connected medications for the specific condition.
These 'lowball' awards provide more clients to the VA at low cost. Essentially, the VA is saying, 'you're OK now because your are on medication.'
A three judge panel released a precedent setting ruling that the VA is ignoring: See UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR VETERANS CLAIMS, NO . 07-2728, DIANNE C. TATUM , APPELLANT , (Argued July 15, 2009 Decided September 28, 2009).
"Where there is a question as to which of two evaluations shall be applied, the higher evaluation will be assigned if the disability picture more nearly approximates the criteria required for that rating." The VA Secretary disputed this argument.
The USCAVC considers the laundry lists in the 38 CFR to be examples rather than criteria. In addition, the higher level examples are inclusive of the lower disability rating examples.
However, there are exceptions. If you are claiming diabetes mellitus, a common condition, you must meet all of the criteria in that particular disability code (DC).
We encourage vets to look closely at 38 CFR, part C to determine exactly what disability you have. Do you have polyuria/polydipsia or diabetes inisipidus .
The later is a permanent condition, the former temporary. Get a diagnosis form you doctor in a letter or progress notes. Show you doctor the 28 CFR, Part C. mMny veteran conditions aren't even described in this document.
In this instance, ihe Board failed to explain why a 60% disability rating was not warranted.
The Veteran should use board certified specialists to counter the conclusions of VA clinicians in the physical examinations.
Reguest an interview with the DRO as part of the appeleate process. This will require the VARO to lay out the case before you.
If you have made your cases, the DRO will increase your ratings.
Still dissatisfied after the DRO review?
Move the claims to the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA) as soon as possible. The BVA seesthe forest through the trees and consider evidence from Board certified physicians over the VARO clinicians and also consider the veterans credibility on the claim.
The BVA judges are less concerned about the bureaucratic circle jerk that goes on in black hole the VA. The BVA and US Court of Veterans Appeals (USCAVC) don't overloook errors and the limited documentation the VARO and VA Medical Center (VAMC) provide on the claim.
The BVA overturns 73 per cent of the VARO rulings. The USCAVC overturns 80 per cent of the claims they receive.
The US CAVC is generally the last step in the appeal process and you should try to find a lawyer to represent you in the DC court. Many attorneys do this "pro bono."
The VA likes the system the way it is. It is slow and good for job security. Backlogs mean the VA will have to hire more legions of claims workers.
The big loser in this bloated system in the veteran.
Subscribe to the Rightardia feed: feeds.feedburner.com/blogspot/IGiu
Netcraft rank: 10841 http://toolbar.netcraft.com/site_report?url=http://rightardia.blogspot.com