Disability Compensation Letter

Sample Disability Compensation Letter – Sinusitis, Sleep Apnea, Rhinitis

This quick disability claim letter to VA Comp & Pension from my own claim for sinusitis, sleep apnea and allergic rhinitis should help get your claim going.

Knowing where to start when filing your first disability compensation claim is daunting, and this quick article with my own sample will help ease your anxiety.

About Sample Disability Comp Letter

Here is a sample of the first two pages of my application for disability compensation to the Dept of Veterans Affairs. If you want to “understand” how to increase your disability or managed the process, check out my post to increase your disability compensation rating. It provides the step by step process of researching your claim.

Keep Disability Letter Short

The entire disability claims package, including documentation, was approximately 70 pages. My summary letter was 5 pages. I usually suggest that disabled veterans keep their disability claims summary to no more than 5 pages. One to two pages is ideal but not a hard and fast rule.

RELATED: Veteran Shocked By Disability Rating Reduction 70 To 0 Percent

The reason for the length of my disability claims package was because of the Veterans Administration‘s incompetence.

Dispute Bad Facts

The VA claimed I had only seen a doctor 1 time for allergies. The claims adjudicator also completely ignored all my treatments for sinusitis. Rather than trusting the VA to their own lack of due diligence  I took action and wrote a thorough summary.

For that reason, I took it upon myself to ensure that they had the correct disability documentation the second time around. At the appointment, the VA’s ENT (ear, nose and throat) examiner told me the VA had conceded service-connection for the sinusitis before even beginning his exam.

I wrote this and include a copy of the first two pages of my disability claims letter to give you an idea of how to format your own summary letter. This format was borrowed from a NOVA conference on VA disability compensation primarily for Veterans Law attorneys.

Before Drafting Your Disability Letter

Before drafting your letter, be sure to look through your service medical records to get your dates right. Be sure to get a copy of your file using the Freedom of Information Act request letter. Getting your file is the first real step to winning your disability claim. Click on the above link to get a copy of that letter.


Next Steps On Disability Letter And Disability Claim

I hope that helps push your claim along by greasing your wheels in at least one way to present your claim to a VA claims adjudicator. Provide this to your VSO or attorney to help begin the process, whether on appeal or filing a new claim or anywhere in between.

One last important detail is the need to request a copy of your file.

I wrote up a free eBook for veterans to download that will help you get a copy of certain files that VA likes to hang on to like your health records, Voc Rehab records, and similar files that are more difficult to request.

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  1. will there be a panacea the VA can reach for, or would VA be willing to try. Nothing is politically incorrect, in the eyes of the VA, if they choose. Between the VA and Veterans, accord will never exist. Two decades have passed,
    since several compensation claims were filed,to cover assignments, ranging from , two years (24 months) in South Korea DMZ line next day after the 24th INF Division pushed the NK, back up north. Agent Orange was standing in puddles so full, it could be splashed, by stepping in shallow puddles, no perk to the ground. Later, I completed a tour in Thailand, then another tour in South Vietnam. 48 months of toxic herbicide, has placed one foot in my grave and another on a banana peel. VA wants me dead bedfore they have to pay compensation to me. No payment until after dead. I forgot, I can take the money with. I hear it is one hell of a battle for survivors. It is evident, in most cases , the dependent survivors have to eat dirt. An attorney with NSLVP , told me , how impossible it is to get VA to pay compensation. From hang-nail to blindness, the veteran is very much out of luck. How is it the veteran takes less . Here is another cramp I live with, where mustard on the cramping muscle, don’t work. What is the veteran’s reaction toward VA giving out 17 million dollars in free bonus during the year 2015. Along that same time frame, VA did not have money to pay claims. Someone must bleed the words, Not me, I am probably in the chicken coop .


  2. I am in the process of obtaining evidence for an appeal that I submitted. About six months ago, I was searching the Web where somehow I found a prepared Sworn Declaration Statement letter. That sample letter gave me all the information I need as a guide to organize and prepared my personal Sworn Statement letter. I have been searching for that sample letter and am having a difficult time finding it. Presently I have obtained all the evidence I need to submit my claim. Please send me that sample letter I so desperately need. It gives a step by step guide to follow in completing that important introductory information. I have been trying to find it for two months without success. I can write my own letter,but that sample guide is an excellent tool. Please help me ASAP. I will sincerely appreciate it….

  3. Using a highlighter to highlight relevant diagnosis and injuries in my MIL med records seemed to work great. It helps the person/doctor/NP to find the relevant info faster for your claim. I received no complaints from doing that. One year for the whole claims process. I received 90%.


  5. What a waste of time. Just another vet giving out bad information. The VA looks at your STRs the information is either there or not. It doesn’t matter what you say unless it’s a mental issue. Stop being a jailhouse lawyer!

    1. @John B – You are obviously a veteran service officer who has zero legal training. Instead, it sounds like you are spreading the dysinfo many regional offices put out there to discourage veterans. I used a layperson statement in my own disability claim on numerous occasions and successfully fought VA on my own case before I became a lawyer. FYI. In fact, this post was written based on that experience during my first year of law school.

      The law clearly indicates VA is required to consider layperson statements so long as the statement is something a non-doctor can comment on. For example, VA will not consider a layperson statement where the veteran opines about a medical diagnosis such as saying, “I have TBI.” VA is required to consider descriptions of pain, congestion, trouble breathing, etc. It is erroneous to claim layperson statements only matter for mental health claims, “I hit my head and lost consciousness while in combat that resulted in stitches later.” If the person has a record of stitches on the head, VA will need to consider the layperson statement. The same kind of logic would support a different percentage for sinusitis. If you have a certain number of congestion attacks from sinusitis, it will result in a different / higher disability rating that can be supported solely from a layperson statement so long as the STRs indicate the person had sinus trouble in the military.

      This is not the first time I’ve heard this erroneous claim from a veteran service officer who is not educated in the law but instead shilling for the agency by spreading dysinfo myths. There is a court of appeals to remedy cases where VA ignores the law, which VA does on a regular basis.

      1. LOL, this John B sounds like the same F**ktard spewing his hatred of veterans all over facebook. When it comes to free meals on veterans day he gowns himself with stolen valor uniforms cause he has no documentation of being a veteran just to feed his fat self. He has many people looking for him including non veterans. Even children know of his fakeness. He has many aliases and they can be viewed on youtube. Here is just one of them.


        Don’t waste your time with this idiot Ben!!

    2. Benjamin, thanks for the insight. I am also trying to put a VA Claim together for COPD. Would appreciate any advice you can give. I can give more details upon request. SD

  6. Thank you Ben ! A real “eye opener” I will use it in the future!
    I ‘ve been chaptered (61) out from the US Army on 2009 with 82% SC disability from the MEB/PEB. with over 20 years of Service and while I was filling up the paperwork to get Promoted to E-9. (SGM) About a year later the VA gave me 100% SC (but not P&T). On July 2015, I received an evaluation letter from the C&P stating that they are dropping my evaluation to 90% . I filed immediately a (nasty) “letter of disagreement” and an “appeal” . Two months later I received another eval letter granting me the 100% P&T!
    But My case is still open! there are Disabilities SC and CR that are not evaluated yet
    and these disabilities ratings are affecting my CRSC Payments from the DFAS (the other MF) which is now at the 20% . As you understand , after my case settles completely I will have some big Back pay since my Discharge/ Retirement on 2009
    I will welcome any other suggestions you might have on my case.
    Thanks again and Regards

  7. This is absolutely amazing documentation.
    I am trying to have have my depression which is currently at 30% increased (been getting worse for the past 3 years) and my Post Traumatic Migraines secondary to a Traumatic Brain injury (both are at 0%) upgraded.

    I am having difficulty finding the wordage to use. I have been seeing a VA psychologist and psychotherapist for the past 4 months and I know that has to be included into the documentation they have requested for me. My psychotherapist is thinking that I might be suffering from PSTD. I am also having those close to me and those who I have worked with write letters as well stating how these have had an affect on me. I have also been diagnosed through an MRI of the brain with focal seizures.

    My question is should I put in the dates of future appointments or just my past appointments and since I have already been classified at a percentage do I write my letter from just the point from the first percentage rating.

    Thanking you in advance,

    Susan V

    1. I have the same deal basically. Im 30% for PTSD and trying to get a claim for my seizures, which really hasn’t gone anywhere as of yet.

      1. My husbands health has gone down the toilet since ETS. He filed paperwork and has a 0% rating for two things but they denied 8 others. We are gathering our resolve in order to attempt to file for his ptsd, which is awful. Good luck James and God bless. hopefully my next post will be a victorious one.
        Amber, Virginia.

  8. Awesome info. Thanks a lot. Plan to utilize some of this info. and apply it to my case. Currently 90% sc and had to retire early do to my sc disabilities.


  9. Maybe you can help me out. I have applied for military disability. It took me seven and half year, to get a approval for my left eye, and a increase to 60%. I was knocked off a rope in the Marine Corps. I suffered damage to my left eye, left lung. I put in a claim for my left lung. I have diaphragmatic paralysis, which has lead to COPD and other ailments. I was denied, even tho I have letters from three different specialists, who have stated the lung problem was caused by my following from the rope. The VA claims it never was reported prior to my being released. I was released within three weeks after the incident. Any idea how to proceed? I have working with the VFW, however, they have had quite a bit of turnover, and the person helping me, more or less files the forms and really doesn’t give me any guidance. The VA is saying my COPD is unrelated to the fall. Any help would be appreciated.

    1. James, the only idea that I can give you is too possibly contact someone who was in your unit at the time of your fall.If possible get more than one statement. You might want them to have it notarized.

  10. I am thinking about filing a claim, I have been diagnosed by the VA, with PTSD! Anxiety, moderate depression and knee pain. I have been on medication since 2012 (after my deployment OEF). I have been a student since and when my symptoms are bad my grades show it. I haven’t worked since and have difficulty sleeping amongst other things. I have seen a therapist and a psychiatrist, but that just drains me talking about these things all of the time. Do you think I have a chance of getting a good rating? Do you have any advice for me.

    1. If you have problems sleeping go to the va and request a sleep apnea test! that alone is 50% compensation if it turns out you have it. Also, go to the VA for everything. Have the doctor do a test for everything you are complaining about. ask for referrals to see other doctors if you need to. Ask for your military medical record if you do not have any copies of ir (i hope you do) and go to the nearest VA place to submit the claim. By the time you have the results of your illnesses they should be in the step where they are asking for your documents to support your request. The faster your start it the better it is, plus they will give you retroactive pay.
      It took them 9 months to approve my request and that ended up been $13,000 in one payment direct deposit into my bank account.
      I cant stress it enough do it as soon as possible

      1. I have sleep apnea and i use a seep apnea machine every night for over a year now,and i applied for disability for sleep disorder and i was denied,i have recently reapplied for it,do you think that i will receive it now .Mary

      2. I Serve ten year in the military I was diagnose with sleep anea but they say it not service
        connected because it not documented in my record but I was granted 50% for my PTSD I

        Know that there’s a connection somewhere can anybody help me with this or give some advice

  11. I need an updated award disability letter since the bank i am applying for a loan doestn want to work with my original one i need help.

  12. Hi worked as a computer faculty in before some time, now i want to salary compensation from That computer institute, in previous i took salary through cash. if they provide any salary compensation letter.
    How would be there ?
    could you please provide that salary compensation format ASAP.

  13. I wonder if you could help me? I applied for service-connected disability for asthma. My one doctor wrote a letter but it was not sufficient. I requested my other doctor to write a letter for the VA but he requested that I give him a sample letter that would be sufficient in wording for the VA, and he would be more than willing to help me out. Could you possibly e-mail me a good sample letter were my Dr. can fill in the necessary information. Thank you for any help that you can give me. Stanley J Jenczyk.

    1. I have sinutits, had surgery where they reamed out my nasal canal with a high speed reamer, I looke like Michael Jackson, no shit! it was hoorible and I still have a large pocket of mucuos in my sinus cavity, I am having a sleep study done, could this condition be from being stuck in the head witk a M-113 Drivers hatch without a CVC on? Here is what I have done, I ask my VFW rep to provide me with a letter specifically what to state on her letter for my claim, he told me he would give IRON CLAD, evidence to win my case. When get this form I will share with you the form’s # and what specically needs stated.Good luck to all of you, Have A Nice Turkey Day! Please share any info you can so we all can get what we deserve. Good Luck keep in touch.

  14. I have a claim in with the VA from injuries while in the Army WTC program for prior service folks. The way the VA is, I’m guessing I will be needing legal counsel shortly. I found the link below during a google search for VA comp attorneys.

    hope this helps!


  15. You can get a free lawyer through your local legion rep.Mine va rep. is in our courthouse but your American legion can help you. Danny U.S. Navy 98-2002

    1. Hey Danny, one can get a lawyer from American Legion, for free, how, is this to help with our claims??? Now, I am just trying to understand, that it is a lawyer and not VSO rep., correct???
      I have no idea who to contact, the American Legion that I am involved, well they are all older and not sure they would know about this, maybe you can point me in the right direction… thanks

  16. Hello,
    My name is Danny.I was in the navy fron jan 98-jan 2002. while i was in hurt my neck and back.I have had trouble with both since i got out but i tried to live with it to the point that i just couldnt take it anymore. i filed for and recieved 100% ssc. then i filed for va comp. the va had done x-rays and mri’s and the va apointed doctor stated that basically this guy’s back is beyond repair. i had 0’s all the way down the list on mobility. I figured i would get maybe 70% and then apeal and get th 100%, but the government decided that i was still employable even thogh the doctor said i wasn’t. thay gave me a rating of 10%. what a joke. so now i have to go through the apeal and no telling how long that will take. the doctors have me on cyclobenzaprine for muscle spas. and vicodin 10’s every 4 hours for pain and also celexa 10mg for depression, but hey im employable lol. and i have to take 2 sleeping pills every night just to get some sleep with all the pain i am in. I hope that the apeal wont take forever. thank you for letting me vent.

    1. Hi Danny,
      Boy, our stories sound pretty much alike: The USA should be ashamed of the way they treat veterans in general, and the out-and-out lies the government puts out. I served on active duty in the Navy aboard an aircraft carrier from November 1979 to November 1983. In January 1983 I was diagnosed with bladder cancer, and of course could not continue my naval career. I was honorably discharged in November 1983, and as of January 1, 2013 (exactly 30 years to the day), the VA still claims that my cancer was NOT SERVICE CONNECTED!!! How they come to this conclusion is beyond me, because as far as I know I didn’t know you could joint the military as a cancer patient. In addition, all these “job” programs for veterans is also a bunch of BS. I have 2 college degrees and over 20+ years experience, yet not one of these so-called “veteran friendly” companies will hire me, and in fact they don’t even bother to respond at all! The United States Government should take a long look at the way it has treated people throughout its history; Indians, blacks, and veterans–hmm seems to be a pattern here. If a person/organization does not plan on honoring its agreements and commitments, then why bother putting them in place in the first place?!

      1. Yahoo Search

        www. Veteran Secret Codes on DD Form 214. Com DoD codes your DD Form 214, Block 26. Eight different sessions–view them all!

        Yahoo. Search

        Military Separation Codes.com

        The code on your DD Form 214 might be alerting your potential employers
        about private issues…who knows!

        Research and draw your own conclusions.

      2. It took Me over 8 years to finally get 20% service connected , but the thing is obama and the democrats are gonna take Our compensation and pensions and use the money to help the illegal aliens they are bringing in to food , homes , cars , etc . I just wonder are We gonna let them get away with this without a fight ?

  17. If your issue on service in Vietnam has not been resolved as of this date-let me give you a bit of advice/help. I could only prove to the VA(lost medical records, of course) that what occurred, did occur, be submitting my letters sent home to my mother and sisters, with copies of letters, with Vietnam(APO)postmarks and details consistent with servie in a wartime setting. That was my only proof of an accident and it was accepted. Hopefully you saved some letters, your family saved some, or you have some evidence of in country service. Also have them check the archives of medical records. They have a Duty to Assist. Good luck and thank you for your service-don’t give up-keep on it. It took me over a year.

  18. need a VA layer to represent me in a denial of disability  claim 2012 ?/ help please Joseph.A.G.  

    1.  @Joseph AnthonyHi Anthony
      where do you live? I know a VA lawyer Jorgensen Law they are in San Diego California, just in case my son gets a denial I would be ready….

      1.  @mstaiadair
         IN ….MD and no luck so far ,pardon my spelling,thanks for reply !

  19. I hope you are going for SSI / SSDI benefits as well, even their approval will help your case..send in every emergency room visit..if possible prove nobody in your family has the same proble with their permission and medical exam..prove severity
    Provide every medical complaint to the ships doctor or on base..seek your own records. SSA.GOV have a form that doctors could fill out for back injuries, very specific and a rating of prognosis. Check and see what your doctors are saying about you…..

  20. Hi
    I am a military mom, my boy served on the USS Enterprise…He came home a wreck. I immediately got POA Power of Attorney and began seeking treatment for him. I waited until I had enough medical evidence. Actually I started gathering evidence when he was in because I started seeing symptoms, not quite PSTD but more Bipolar, he saw psych at least three separate time on the ship during the time of other shipmates committing suicide.
    So we when went to QTC, and I already faxed his evidence that I gathered including the reckless driving speeding tickets, my documented proof of me trying to contact the base before he deployed, I wanted him to talk to somebody”. I was told that he will be approved. I am very good with SSI/SSDI cases because that is my actual job 9 to five..
    So I am waiting to see what she says is true that means he got approved in the matter of months. As my boy mind is clearing up I see other issues that will raise his ratings.
    So I want to impart some of what I did- hopefully it would someone case here and
    Thank you for your service
    1. get as much medical evidence you can gather, even if you went to jail and medicine for it.
    2. Use your firing from job as evidence- especially for any mental health issues ie: poor performance, agrressive etc..
    3. Use any workman comp awards after your served and it pertains to your present claim, espeically if you believe that the military cause the issue in the first place…like mental health issues, some work settings can worsen symptoms with PSTD, Major Depression and insomonia
    If you were EVER in prison as a result to your mental illness after you served, use those records including any release conditions- must see psych or be violate, must take medication be violated, those conditions..
    Domestic Violence Records can be helpful if it describes your behavior ” bizarre” ” crazy” ”off his/her medication”
    Family History is important- I once won a case for person who dad was a vet with pstd, daughter air force pstd, son arm bipolar, another some navy bipolar..raised the ratings

    Ms Adair

    1. Fax if you can depending what phase of the claim you are in- your evidence often as possible, present it well. I hope this help a case * I meant to say that..

    2. I served on the Enterprise and wanted to know what where some of her findings about the ship. I Had several bought of bronchitis, my sinus are messed up and have this repeated vertigo symptoms head aches.

  21. I hate to hear of so many verterans having to go through so much red tape for help. I filed a claim about a year ago for a primary immune deficiency called CVID which first manifest during my service. The VA finally sent me to a QTC doctor who turned me down saying that I was born with this. I was not born with this. I went into the Navy a healty 25 year old. My immunologist reviewed my medical records and had written a supporting letter saying this happened during time in service. The worst part is the QTC doctor I was sent to is an orthopedic/spinal doctor. How does his opinion over rule a board certified immunologist? By the way, the QTC doctor spent maybe 3-5 minutes with me, did no examination, and asked for no health history. I have asked my VSO to file a letter of disagreement along with a second letter from my immunologist stating that I was not born with this disease but rather developed it in while in the military. My VSO was helpful to file the paperwork, but is quick to let me know I probably have no chance since the QTC doctor turned me down. I’m not ready to give up yet.

    1. QTC: There is more here than meets the eye folks. Who is OTC? OTC performs
      examinations for the VA. Who was leading the VA prior to the current Secretary
      of The VA. Research: http://www.VA Watchdog.org. Read up on OTC (Millions)and Diamond Bar Company (Billions). Yes got it: The former Secretary of The VA!!!! Click on Trace Your Claim
      on Top of screen–strode all the way down…check out their filing system. Afterwards Click on C & P Exam on the
      left side of the screen–there it is folks!!

  22. I would like to know if some one can advise me on how to proceed. I was honorably discharged from USMC for chronic back problems after a fall while in training. I was not rated because according to Navy doctors, an MRI reports showed a spinal bifida occulta S1 defect (birth defect). After 27 years and a lifetime of chronic back pain and related complications, I find-out by three independent orthopedic surgeons, that I have no birth
    defect, but an old injury, which now renders me unemployable.


    1. I love it. It is so true that the people sitting behind the desks and making these decisions about our livelihood do not have a clue. If they were in our shoes they wouldn’t be able to wear them because they probably couldn’t handle it. I don’t know about you but the times I get a rejection letter, I put it in my bible because I know “It is already DONE.” How do I know this to be true, because GOD said so. Amen my sister

  24. I cannot hire an attorney at this time due to needing my decision and no matter what, I am planning on suing for one million plus due to non disclosure. My claim is for retroactive from 1956 to present. If I were to hire an attorney, he would get his normal retroactive fee. I have done all of the work and an attorney would never have done what I have done. I am fortunate I type 80 WPM which helps my cause. There are thoughts I was a gineau pig. I work on this 24/7 due to righteousness and fair play.

  25. Again, I filed for anxiety disorder and VA listed through my records seizures due to talking to my wife (lay person). I was illegally turned into DMV by VA and have not had a license for one year and like you say, they could care less. Their salaries range from $53,000 to $83,000 per year to turn us down. I do not want something for nothing. I am convinced I am to help other veterans and my case should be on FOX news. If one does not have PTS going in, they will have it when finished with VA processing and what about the spouse who endures it also. ANYONE OUT THERE KNOW HOW I COULD GET ON FOX? I have a compressed vertebra due to streptomycin given to me from TB
    I caught in Africa setting up Sac bases for all of Europe. This one head surgeon here in California stated I compressed my vertebra falling down a flight of stairs when I stepped off one stair, I was lucky to spot this when I pulled my Clinical reports. What about other veterans who do not pull their records. My doctor told me this levetiracetam was for anxiety when quoting it in my record for 5 years as seizure medication. The use of medication to be put on bottle and VA requirement, but not enforced. My doctor put in report that I complained she never answers my letters and that she does when in fact I have 19 unanswered letters and all these type things destroy your credibility and mine is very important to me.
    I have sleep Apnea and report states most my family of 10 brothers and sisters have it when in fact none do.
    I went to neurology several months ago and she listed in report that I told her I had not had a seizure in years and I was furious, so sent her letter stating I never had a seizure period and she never responded.
    I could probably get benefits for seizures, but itwould be illegal to claim and I do not need this stigma on my record. It goes on and on.

  26. I have been fighting the VA for PTSD while in combat in Vietnam for 42 year’s. Their main issue is that they cannot find where I was in country. Well I was killing people in the South Mekong River Valley area with a group of ARVN Rangers and a small Spec ops team. Apparently there were no “orders cut” so the VA says I need to give proof of each operation while in Cambodia and Vietnam border crossings. I was a kid (like most of us) and what did I know about orders except to follow them. Now the VA after turning me down for PTSD because I cannot give them names I again am fighting the system. My own VA Psychiastrist says I am unemployable because of PTSD, and gave me the lowest score for disability which says on paper at the VA I suffer from severe PTSD, Hearing and Tintinitus plus vertigo which I receive 20% on. The VA does not care about the Vet now or never. I am hiring a Lawyer and I will see someone from the Comp & Pen meeting in front of a Judge. I as well will at that time go public with just exactly what the “missions” were all about…killing select targets… and some of those targets were civilian and done so just for a psychological affect on the enemy. This is areal problem for guys that were on ops that have no paper trail. It sickens me knowing what this country took from me and how terrible they treat the soldier after they screw him or her up.

    1. I am sure your family and friends could testify about your symptoms post and pre war conditions. Make sure you get it notarized, seek out those who fought with you- if possible
      I cannot stand facebook but to find people who served with my son prvided me with loads of info, but you have to decide how much is revelant in your case…

    2. The VA has someone with a security clearance who can research classified operations and verify veterans statements.

      1. Yes they’re should be someone to research these claims and missions without the proper papertrail. I went through Ranger School but wasn’t black ops, so you would think that patrols that I was on in Bosnia would be filed with my chain of command. Doc, said I have PTSD and Major Depressive Disorder, but no paperwork exists saying that these patrols I went on ever actually happened. I have shrapnel in my right knee from a grenade that got me just outside of Camp Dobol and the nightmares from the bodies in mass grave sites. According to the VA C & P experts, I was never there, if I was then I’m making too big of a deal of it and deserve no compensation because it wasn’t a designated Combat Zone. I haven’t been able to get or hold a job for more than a month in the last 8 years, and the grenade, well according to my former PCP, it’s only a small piece of shrapnel that isn’t harming anyone so it can just stay there. Even if it does feel like a hot needle being moved back and forth. All that is on top of a diagnosis of Sleep Apnea requiring a CPAP machine and back pain, from my spinal surgery. Well it turns out that those super strong titanium rods and screws holding my spine together aren’t that strong after all. My x-ray yesterday explained why I was hurting so bad, one of the screws broke in half, so part of it is secured in my spine the other part is just floating around causing even more scar tissue. I wish I could sue for pain and suffering.

    3. Perhaps to save you all hiring lawyers try using the VET organizations like VFW , Order of the Purple Heart or American Legion most have offices at VA centers stop in and talk to one of them they are very helpful and can help you out. I did it and i got my claim faster. They also are not publicized much but its a sure thing going to one of them..

  27. Greetings to brother and sister veterans. The help that I received came from VETERANS QUALITY of LIFE ACCESS NETWORK INC., located in New York City, NY. VQLAN’S HEADQUARTERS. Go to the website at http://www.vqlan.org
    If you want some serious help and information from a veteran who has 30 years of experience helping veterans across America and beyond. I’m speaking from my heart because I been there and done that. You’ll be glad you did. Westley Thomas / USMC / Vietnam Veteran 1966-1968

  28. Just a couple of quick questions as I venture into this spiders web! I served in active duty Air Force 1976-1985. Then I served in Air Force Reserves from 1985 to 1990. I was medically discharged from the Reserves for a “grossly abnormal EKG”. I also had documented abnormalities even when I was active duty. I never attempted to file any claims all these years until Sept 7, 2011. It is on this day that I went into V-tach and almost died of Sudden Cardiac Arrest. I ended up with a pacemaker/defibrillator implant. The diagnosis is a suspected genetic diesease that started with the symptoms while I was in the military. Does it mean anything to the VA that I was medically discharged from the Reserves and in those discharge papers make reference to active duty medical records for the same heart problem? Also, does the VA automatically rule against genetic diseases? I appreciate any help anyone may have.

  29. Well, I wish I had seen this before I sent in my application. I prepared a chronological list with details about the conditions I intended to file for – sort of like you have here. I took this and all my records to the DAV to get assistance filing. The rep told me not to include any of my prepared documents. He told me to only list my conditions and let them review the information in my records. He said they didn’t want the extra documents and I would be wasting my and their time including it.

    I filed under the benefit delivery at discharge program (goal of 2-4 months for determination after separation) and now almost 7 months after separation I have no rating decision.

    That was some great advice.

  30. Denise Green,

    I would suggest you contact your service organization, VFW, etc which is ususally located in the same VA Regional Office, Winston-Salem and have them make contact on your behalf. Usually the service organization has an ongoing relationship with the VA Claims person who is working your file and they can either speak on your behalf or you can submit a letter or e-mail with your exact words and have your service organization submit it directly to the VA RO Winston-Salem. You just need to contact your service organization or call the RO Winston-Salem directly.

    Jerel L. York, National Pre-Discharge Claims Representative
    100 North Main St.
    Suite 1700
    Winston Salem, NC 27101
    Phone: 336-714-5955
    Fax: 336-714-5999
    E-Mail: [email protected]
    or try calling

    Donald W. Priem, Jr.
    VFW Department Service Officer
    VA Regional Office
    251 North Main Street
    Winston-Salem, NC 27155
    Phone: 336 631-5457
    Fax: 336 714-0901
    E-Mail: [email protected]

    I hope this info is helpful


  31. Can anyone give me a good phone number for the Winston Salem VA office dealing with compensation claims? I am not getting anywhere with the 800 number. I have also put in several inquires and have not received a reponse.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated. I served for almost 30 years and feel as though I have been put kick under a bus. This is very depressing:-(


  32. I would rather die which I will do as a result of malpractice at the hands of an incompetent foreign doctor in the VA emergency room, than to go thru this arduous and torturous dog and horse show and reems of paperwork to add to my misery before I die and then wait an enormous amount of time which I do not now have thanks to the VA uncaring attitude.


  34. i am disheartened reading many of your stories.. All I can add to the conversation is that I am service connected 100%+ for multiple gunshot wounds and PTSD, The VA has been very good to me over the course of my life and I domt have many complaints outside of the times I have seen people who I thought were deserving of compensation and unable to recieve the benefits they earned, often times in blood.. Good Luck to all of you and God Bless

  35. I am a retired Army veteran wh0 retired in 1986. While in service I was diagnosed with Asthma,sinusitis, allergic rhinitis, and COPD. During this time I had problems sleeping which continues to this day. In 1986 the va denied service connection for Asthma, and sinusitis. I filed a CUE claim on the asthma which was granted in 1988, with an initial rating to date of discharge of 10% and then a 30% rating from date of the approved CUE. From 1986 thru 2007 I kept my claim of sinusits alive by new material evidence, appeals, de novo reviews and anything else I could think of. Finally in 2007 service connection for sinusitis was granted. In Feb 2005, I was informed by a doctor at Fort Hood that I had COPD secondary to my asthma. In 1986, I thought COPD and asthma were one of the same, how ignorant I was. My retirement physical stated in the doctors own had writing COPD secondary to long standing chronic Asthma. In 2009, I was awarded service connection for the COPD, and because I was on oxygen I was granted 100%. In 2009, I was finally forced to face my sleeping problems. I had a sleep study done at Willford Hall, Lackland AFB. It was determined that I had sleep apnea, and the va did in fact provide me a CPAP. Now think about this.. I have service connection as I said for Asthma, COPD, allergic rhinitis and sinusitis. Anyone with any knowledge about breathing issues knows that these conditions overlap to some degree… But the sleep specialist at Lackland tells me that none of my medical issues contributed to my sleep apnea… so my question is.. ( short of going to a private doctor) how do I prove that my sleep apnea is secondary to my allergic rhinitis/sinusitis, and lung conditions. I have done extensive research and found many articles that indicate that rhinitis often causes sleep apnea. I have reviewed the BVA cases of which many indicate apnea granted secondary to rhinitis, sinusits, or asthma. While all of this information supports my position, the va does not accept BVA cases as precidence, nor do they accept scholarly articles from the internet as a basis for awarding any service connected condition, but the VA will remand a case back to the regional office to conduct a c/p exam based on such articles submitted with a claim.

    So the question again, how to prove service connection for sleep apnea secondary to either asthma/allergic rhinitis or sinusits… short of going through another sleep study and a private doctors opinion….

    Appreciate the site, and and ideas you have on this subject.


    1. I have the exact same problem . I have filed for iu and my copd and sleep apnea are on appeal. I took letters from generals that I worked for in the Air Force. I’ve since recieved 2 letters in the last 2weeks telling me they are working on my benifits. Hope it’s over soon . God bless u.

  36. In 2005 I filed for disability and was turned down. I did the Notice of Disagreement and was turned down. I did the DeNovo and was turned down. I did not do the Form 9 because my advocate retired, and he did not turn my file over to someone. I went to the office, no one wanted to do anything because were not sure what he did and how he did them. So, the form was not filed. I was new to this, so I have no where else to turn to. I got my health benefits in 2006, but in 2008 they were taken away because someone did my advocate a favor. So, I did not benefits for about 2 years. In 2009, I started my fight again for my benefits. I filed again with another advocate that someone at the VA told me about. He started my process for me and also got back my VA benefits. In 2010 I was finally granted 30% for major depressive disorder. Same thing I claimed for in 2005. GO FIGURE. Well, things got rolling with my new advocate and talking with someone at the Regional Office, I ended up getting 70%, because in 2005 I should of received 50% and then 70%, so of course I received a good amount of back pay.
    I am trying now to go back to the 2005 claim, but they are telling me because of the Form 9 was not done, the claim is dead in the water.
    I was told by a military lawyer to keep fighting. If the evidence was there before it came final, and I can prove this, I should be allowed to still go back and claim was is owed to me.
    Is this true, or does it make sense to you?
    Is there some advice you can give me or some where to look for some more information on this. If so, I would definitely appreciate it.

    Thank you,
    Karen Campbell

    1. Hi Karen,

      Keep fighting for it. Get the new rep to push the fact that the VA made a mistake and didn’t do the right thing. They make so many mistakes and if the info was in, and it wasn’t reviewed properly and a “erroneous disability determination” was determined, that is a mistake they made. Definitely push the issue. I think that if you talk to your VSO and/or get a review officer to take a look at it, then I think you will be successful. It never hurts to get documentation from your civilian doctor about that condition if you saw one at that time for treatment. Have the doctor do a letter stating that and submit it and based on your new evidence, which they ignored the evidence completely the last time, you should be successful. I read that they can get claims decided a lot faster if you have a qualified medical professional – MD, PhD etc,. document it and provide your records to the VA. I had an appeal for 2 1/2 years and when I submitted the paperwork after my second back paperwork, I went up to 40% retroactive to when I filed my appeal. Hang in there and hopefully, I will hear that you were successful. 🙂 Good Luck, DT

  37. Ben, can i ask where you found the information on the epa reports and such for the buildings you were stationed in?

  38. hi my name is anthony brown and i served in the united states navy from 1987 to 1995 which the military has lost my medical records serveral times. i was diagnosed with having seziures likes activities on active duty and discharged with only 10% rating for my disabilities. my illness started when i would get upset, having aniexty attacks, sweating, shaking, because of going into battle dress of encountering missiles firing over my ship. the military just release me and did not try to give me help with my situation. to this date, i have lost my wife and kids from dealing with my siutation that the military discharged me with no help. i can’t sleep at night, i wait up sweating, having night mares, and out burst. sometimes getting up and putting clothes on for battle dress. to this date, i submitted a claim in on feb 3, 2010 in for numerous illness, and have contacted my congressman john lewis for help. my claim is going on almost 2 years with a congressman backing me an nothing has happen. can anyone give me some points of what should i do next.

  39. I have rad this whole article by mistake whille searching info for a fellow veteran. I have been working as a VSO for 3 yrs and i came across various atrocities. Its unfortunate that most of you have gone thru the HELL of VA. I go thru it daily but, then again I consider them my colleagues because I deal with them everyday and I have to fight for my veterans. Unfortunately, the truth is VA works ardously to help vets, but the the C&P evaluators are the ONES who run the show. You can have all the evidence on hand but, if the evaluator states differently then the VARO will be forced to follow his orders. I have seen that very much so I know what I am talking about. I had gone to the coaches and to no avail, they stated that the C&P evaluator has precedence over anyother info. THAT IS the problem, like many state FIGHT and keep on FIGHTING. You guys have senators in the states we dont have any here to support us locally or in congress, we live on an island. Therefore, we are out in the middle of nowhere. Keep on fighting eventually you will win!!

  40. I totally agree with you because my Dad, veteran from WW2, was just denied his VA benefits as small as they were. They told him in January how much he would be receiving and he had to tile a complaint just to get the denial letter he received. All I have to say, you are ready to serve again? I say only to defend you and your family because obviously this govenerment cares nothing about their Veterans, especially those that are senior citizens now. This is an outrage for the United States of America and it is time the seniors stand together, with their supporters and put a change to all of this “political” crap.! That’s all I got to say about that! (Quote from Forrest Gump)

  41. I am a combat veteran of WW2 and VA related for years. I live as permanent resident in Ukraine and all past annual medical expense claims and the current unpaid claim are in Russian language. Today in Zaporozhye I cannot obtain medical assistance due to overdue satisfaction of my Jan. 19, 2011 for 2010 filed claim not paid into my USA bank. There has been no problem of these past filed Russian language claims over the past 5 years. They have always been paid in U.S. dollars before April 1 every year. Today I have not received reimbursement for my January 19, 2011 filed claim for 2010 medical. I cannot receive much needed help as these people expect cash at the moment of service. I am 87 years and my principal, among others, malady is CS F rhinorrhoea which means that the brain containing sack was punctured in a fall and the fluid continues to flow every minute every day. I have no language interpreter today and no American group or person to assist. Maybe an email from you with subject: “Don’t Tread on Me” may encourage me: kelleykents (at)(gee)mail(dot)com Thanks for caring.

  42. Mr. Ben
    You are a very intelligent person. I hope that i dont offend you when i say your are God sent. In any regards you’re providing a great service.
    appreciate you,

  43. I am in need of assistance. My husband was in the USAF from 1986-1990. during that time he was stationed in the Phillipines. He was a comtech(telephone installation)While working on a telephone line, he was electrocuted. He was in the hospital for roughly 3 weeks and then sent stateside for additional recoup. He is no longer in the telephone business and avoids electrical contact, He left the phone company via buyout for that same reason, constant stress of this happening again. He is most recently employed with the National Park Service and that job will be terminating 8/12/2011 due to budget cuts. He deserve to file a claim. why one was never done i don’t know, what i do know is that a friend of his injured his knee playing flag foot ball while inthe USAF and receives a benefit of over $800 per month and will continue to for the rest of his life. My husband was almost killed and he gets nothing. We have the form sf 95 but not sure where to send it, I need assistance, any help would be greatly appreciated.

  44. I have processed several requests for upgrading my service connection percentage. all denied. They say that they reviewed my claim and did not review my military Medical files, because no-one knows where they are. They were sent directly to the VA by the USAF in 1990. I filed for my disability upon discharge was was rated at 0% service connection on three issues. They awarded me compensation at 10%. They state that if I have an on-going chronic condition but haven’t been seen by a VA doctor about it, there is NO CHANCE it will be considered. Many times a Vet will have a condition that there IS NO TREATMENT for thus they will not see doctors, but just put up with it. Also VA doctors decide on examination whether your conditions they treat are service connected, If you get billed for the Medications they prescribe for it, then they have determined that it isn’t service connected. A lot of what are now compensated conditions were not known when many veterans were in-service. Proving service connection for these is very hard, because the doctors never diagnosed, or documented. One thing I found is my doctors never did Blood sugar tests on me in-service, My diabetes was diagnosed post discharge by the VA, but since I have diabetic family members, they said Non-service connected. My medication co-payments equal my VA compensation.

  45. While on active duty there have been numerous time when i went on sick call and com-laint about certain things such as sleep apena, bad feet etc. It turns out the doctord never annotated my medical records. The y gave me a few asprin or what ever and said go back to your unit. Is there anything that can be done to prove an injury was service connected. Thank you

  46. Carrie, I hear you. I am an OIF vet too and I was until recently working as a VSR (claims processor) in Pension. I am also going through the compensation process for my issues related to service. Although my expertise is on the Pension side of the house, the one thing I can tell you is that it helps to do a congressional inquiry if VA is dragging ass/fucking up in general on your claim. By escalating a claim to “Congressional”, it ensures that management is tracking the claim and VA must respond in a reasonable time frame…usually 7-12 days. Go talk to your senator/congress person. You may not get the answer you want, but you will at least know how far along you are in the process, if further development is needed, or if the case got resolved. As for VSOs, do your homework-some are really on the ball, others are useless and it shows in the initial claims we get. Some are ‘slam dunks’ and I can generate the claimant’s award within 30 minutes of reviewing the folder; for others…amateur night, you can tell. By far the worst are from lawyers “elder law specialists”….they like to charge the poor claimant to do a POA, but guess what? VA doesn’t recognize POAs in Pension land! Really good job bilking old Vets out of money when a half-way decent VSO can do it for free-my point is shop around and interview them as to what they have experience with. The following is to provide you with view inside VSR-world. Our work is set up on ‘points’..we need to work a certain amount of claims per day in order to advance/keep our jobs. Your claim may be very complex, but carry few points…so it goes to the back of my box. Another claim maybe fairly simple, but carry a lot points weight wise…that is the one that I am going to work. This system is their fault, because it is all about time and quantity rather than quality. There are some nasty habits in VA that are part of the institutional culture. We were trained from day one to DENY, DENY, DENY at any level possible. It was SOP to rip off claimants on the time they have to respond to our requests for info. (development). When we request some types of evidence, claimants get 60 days to respond-other types of evidence we only give 30 days. It was my Team’s SOP to only give 30 day windows-regardless of what category of evidence we were requesting…then the claim can be denied on the basis of failure-to-prosecute. To add insult to injury, remember that in pension many claimants are elderly and it will take them time to track down the needed documentation. Also, the work arragement is all about processing claims and reducing volume-not about customer service. It is so sick that when a claimant dies while waiting to get paid, that is a ‘good’ case to work…easy points. My fellow veteran employees are all really dissatisfied, I really want to publish a whistleblower book or something, because this way of doing things is evil. Then the legislation is flawed and riddled with loopholes, a WWII hero with an amazing service record is denied because his income is slightly over the limit (he did the right thing by working and saving money); yet some dirtbag who sprained an ankle in basic training in 1995, who got separated and subsequently gets “the HIV” (how that is service connected is beyond me..my drill sergeant forced me to share needles or have unprotected sex?) is kicking back enjoying his check. Any ways if anyone wants any info. on pension or insight into the magical world of VA please feel free to contact me. [email protected] If you have ever seen the movie “Office Space”, then you have an accurate depiction of what the Philadelphia PMC is.

  47. Thank you for creating this website. This claim letter is a very good example of how to write one for my son, a Marine combat veteran. I am trying to assist him with collecting additional evidence for his disability claim and this is very helpful.

  48. I am sickened, sad, and angry after reading these posts. I am a 30 year old OIF Veteran who is currently going through the whole claims process for PTSD. I first filed back in 2008 and due to being homeless I missed one of the required appointments. When I finally found some stability I tried giving it a second shot. This time, I’m assuming due to clerical error, they were sending all of my paperwork to the wrong address! Once more I had to clear up that issue and start over. Then guess what? They screwed up the address again. Now here in 2011 I’m still battling with them and it seems like they are trying to build a case against me. Everytime I deal with a VA shrink all they care to ask me about is my past. Never about Iraq and my whole Army experience. The only shrink that did ask about it was the one that did my C&P but he was required to. Also he is a Gulf War Vet so atleast I knew he could some how relate. I will, at my next appointment, force the shrink to listen to me about my experience. I need to talk about it and she needs to hear it.
    I don’t know what the outcome will be nor do I have my hopes up. The only thing I know is the way I feel and the way they aggravate it. I strongly agree that only vets care about vets. I care about all young and old. The thought of the VA letting vets die before they decide a claim makes me want to punch whoever is in charge. That is like committing murder to rob someone of what is rightfully thiers. Sorry that’s just how I feel. Well to end this rant just let me say that my hope is for vets to unite and be heard because this is getting rediculous and obviously has gone on for to long.

  49. I file a disability claim in 2003 for IBS and was granted 0%. I worte a notice of disagreement in a timely matter. In 2004 I was granted 10%. I wrote another notice of disagreement because my IBS problem was effecting me in asspects of my life, job, chruch and even travling and sometimes being late. In 2010 I was granted 30% for my IBS. And I did not receive no back retro pay and no increase in my service disability. I was told that nothing is owed to me that my disability for anxierty. And overall disabilty stays the same, I’m 80% disable and have been sine 1997. I and someone with legal status added up my percentage through Federal Code of Regulations 38 and came up with percentage of 86. But VA told that I do not get anything, nothing change. Could someone explain this to me. Thanks In Advance,

  50. I had a hearing with a judge and my VSO back in May 2007 and have still not had a denial or approval for my claim. They said they needed more info from my regional office in Reno and that they had not investiagted my claim enough. That was in July 2010. To date I have not had a bit of contact from anyone. My original claim was filed in 2005.

  51. I started reevaluation in Dec 09. Finally received their ruling two weeks ago. I wrote a bunch about each thing I claimed. Plus every time they asked fore clarification I would add another claim to my packet. Went to all their doctors too. Went from 10 % to 60% and intend to appeal the items that they said were service connected at 0% plus add something else.

  52. My Brother, My heart goes out to you, as for myself, this is my third (3rd.) try for Compensation & Disability from the VA. I served from 1968-70, my initial complaints which were backed by the Veterans Doctors, & my own Specialists for the following Diseases, they are as follows: PTSD, Agent Orange, Hepatitis B, after (41 yrs.), I just got to see and had to go to the Veterans Hospital for my (C&P Evaulation for PTSD), the VA Doctor told me, that I had PTSD, and I would be receiving a rating letter from the Veterans Adm. within a short while, this was last Nov. 2010. I have since received (2) letters from the rating review board, and it said it was working on my case, by the way, I go to see my (Shrinks, Etc. ) constantly. I have been trying for 41 years to get what is owed to me, as well as the rest of my brothers who served there country, during those dreadful years. All I can do is wait, & fight, and never give up, I pray to God Almighty, that before I die, I will receive what is due to me, as I would like to leave my wife, with something other than her taking care of me all these years. Brother lewis, try to hang in there, as this is what the government wants us to do, is to die, get frustrated, then they do not have to give us any MONEY & BENEFITS ! I pray that the good Lord will bless you & your family, and keep trying, never give up my brother, Brother Lewis,, do not give up the fight, until we can’t fight anymore, GOD-BLESS………….Sincerely Tim

    1. Hey my brothers our true salvation is waiting for us beyond this earth. Although we all have an advocate that Will stand in the gap for each and every one of us. My prayer is wait upon the Lord he will hear our cries he will incline upon us he will pull us out of this horrible pit,and this mury clay place our feet on a solid rock and establish our comings and our goings. So just be steadfast unmovable always abounding in the Lord.

  53. I would like to see the criteria for agent orange. I was almost died Jan 4 2010 with a double anuresym of my aorta one part was repaired with a stint and the other has not been repaired as of yet. I am 40% service connect thru the VA for loss of hearing, athuritis, + eczema. I got a rash within two years after I left Vietnam, While in Vietnam awoke with a blood stained pillow from my ear. Then medical records and personnel records sent to me from St Louis and VA were totaly incomplete. So you tell Me what is a man to do to get the right benfits or the right records.
    I also got copd and ulcer in feb and march of 2010 and was in the hospital twice. Forget it I give up. I would tell anyone considering a military career forget it it just aint worth it.
    Lewis Sanders Retired First Sergeant

  54. I am a veteran that has continue to file claims for service connected disability and continues to be denied bases on not making my appointments with QTC here in the metro Atlanta office located on Peachtree Street downtown Atlanta. Mind you I constantly have my private physician mail statements about my conditions which seems to be overlooked, lost intra office at the local VA or the VSO doesn’t send the file with the new informationb. I have written both my Senators and both have responded to some tired old writing from the VA that I failed to make my QTC appointment. I have been seeing my private physician for many years and have been approved for several service connected disability but all of a sudden I need to go to one of their doctors. This aint anything but red tape. Holding up your claim longer just to be denied. Then start the NOD. Then the appeal process then more years. Something should be done about these veterans and civilians never having to serve in any capacity of a military branch of armed forces has the gall to deny me and my fellow comrades fallen on their illness to be denied over and over again because they have failed to read the claim for all its worth. Our VA system are far remove from the veteran all is seen is that some civilian or fellow veteran working are not truly dedicated to our voices and hurt. Our country takes care of everybody and anybody but us the veteran. Its a horrrible thing for any ceteran that suffers and to be homeless and sick just to be turned downN denied and polaced on paperwork cause the worker for the VA can’t and will not figfure out the correct medical disabling condition or condirtions cause its too much to read and its boring or the worker for the VA is bored. My wife worked in the file room at the local VA when it was downtown and listen to thw horror stories about the mix up of the veterans files and the information what happens to it. I know what you my fellow comrades are going through. We need an IG inspection to just wipe out a many that0is just qorking for and oinly a paycheck. We all work for our payxchecks but work for our veteran especially. I’m hoping and praying that we as veteran want have to hurry up and wait too and so long just to get denied over and over. We need a relief and a quicker and fasyter process to getting what we deserve a fair chance in dealing with our claims and grant an approval with evidence when poresented. U S Army retired SSgt 101st Airborne Division, Fort Camnpbell, Kentucky 1972

  55. The VA is a large beaucratic system where it is easier to say No than to do anything else. The responsibility to prove a claim lies with the veteran and not them. That’s the way they play the game. And it is a game to them. Far too many of the VA claims people act like the money is coming from their own pockets. You must keep on top of your claim all the time. Find a state veterans claim service officer. Many VA hospitals and clinics have in-house SO’s from the DAV, state, etc to help guide you. Never, ever give up! That let’s them win. Instead, be the squeaky wheel! Call your VA counterpart and ask about your claim at least once a month. That tells them you are actively engaged in getting it processed. Contact your Senator in Wash., DC. A congressman is great, but the senator is even better. Send a letter and be short, concise in what the problem is and why you need help. A long, rambling letter just obscures why you are writing. Tell them what’s wrong, how long you have been trying to get things done with the VA, and what you want. Tell them about your vet affliations. For me I’m a Lifetime member of the DAV and a member of the American Legion. Contact those organizations also on your behalf. The more help, the better. Good luck!

  56. I think that claim denials will soon hit an all time high. Why? Because of gigantic budget cuts which are imminent and will be pushed for by the Republicans. Being denied (or delayed) takes the fight out of many but no Veteran should ever stop fighting. I also believe that another way for the VA to cut the budget will be to re-examine and reduce existing approved claims, thus using valuable manpower to save a cent or two out of every dollar, when that manpower could be used on the fair handling of current pending claims and appeals. Let’s see if this doesn’t prove to be true in the next year or two.

  57. It’s very discouring to see that applications are routinely denied and delayed, sometimes until the time that the applicant is deceased. Is anyone aware of a manner to not get into that long grind? My original application is only a few months running to date. I was as thorough as possible with the original application, with assistance from the local rep. Other than the notification of receipt, I’ve received no requests for additional documentation, ect. Any advice would be appreciated.

  58. Take a look at the website above. You’ll learn about the Forgotton ones and how the veterans have been screwed by the system. The wrongs can now be righted while those of us are still able to submitt and win our claims. You’ll learn about the word game that is used preventing you from winning your claim. If you are not familiar with secondary conditions. Take a look at our HOME OF THE WORLD’S LARGEST INFORMATION BANK! You’ll be glad you did. It will change your life. Veterans Quality of Life Access Network Inc.
    It helped me after 34 years of being in denial, misunderstood, missinformed and receiving the run around with no help. Your greatest fight after you serve is to fight to get what you deserve. If you give up the system wins and that is exactly what they who run the system wants you to do.
    Think about it. When the Veteran suffers the whole family suffers and it is not fair to the family to have to struggle to take care of the veteran when the VA Government should be providing for them without all of the red tape.
    Westley Thomas / USMC / Vietnam Veteran 1966-1968

  59. Thanks for the information. I also filed and appealed my own claim. 8 years worth. I am now 100% and also the Post Service Officer with The American Legion Post 147 of Jasper Indiana. I average 2 appointments per week assisting fellow veterans. They range from 85 years old to 21 years. Every case if different and many are very complicated. Housedbound cases (Aid & Attendance) are the worst. It is not uncommom for the veterans to pass before the case is final. Daniel Lawson, Sfc US Army Retired.

  60. Russell O’Neal:
    What was the specific reason for denial that the RO gave on the original letter? You have to respond specifically to the reason for denial and, if possible, provide additional evidence to counter it. The new PTSD rules cover combat veterans. Did you serve in combat? Was it verified? If not, did you have a verifiable stressor statement? Have you already filed an appeal?

  61. I would like to know why the airforce men at a base in Bangkok, Thialand are being turned down for disability claims on agent orange exposure . They were the ones who loaded and unloaded the canisters of agent orange. They also had to clean the planes.

    1. My hunch is that they are not having success proving that the Agent Orange they were exposed to is the cause of the conditions they have now. As I understand it, there are only a few places in the world that the VA is allowing presumptive service-connection for conditions resulting from Agent Orange. I assume Bangkok is not one of these. The person should contact either a VSO or a Veterans Law attorney if they were denied ASAP because there time limit on appeal for these cases up to the Board or the US Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.

    2. David,

      Google the below citation and you will find a claim that was approved for Parkinson (Agent Orange) for a veteran that was stationed at Don Maung Bangkok.

      Citation Nr: 1530215
      Decision Date: 07/15/15 Archive Date: 07/21/15
      DOCKET NO. 14-01 657 ) DATE

      1. My name is Vincent Collins I was in South Da Nang Vietnam Province in1970 at the time Agent Orange was administered I aquired hepatitis as well as high blood pressure during that time. I put in a claim was denied any suggestions.

  62. I have a similar claim for PTSD and unemployability and have been denied even after the PTSD rules have been changed. I have been diagnosed by VA mental health and my doctor said I am unemployable. I contacted my state Senator who’s office sent a letter to the VA asking about it only to have the VA send an explanation letter and that was it, I already knew that but I wanted to know why. So I didn’t get any help there and I can’t afford a lawyer, I live in Texas, any suggestions? Thanks

  63. I completely agree with Rory R Jones, I am a 31 year retired Air Force Chief Master Sergeant. I submitted my claim online in May 2010 (received a confirmation number) and inquired in Aug 2010 only be told that the claim have been erroneously closed and would be reopened. The VA would then followup via telecom. As of this date (2/8/2011) I am still awaiting. I serviced my Country faithfully during both Vietnam and the 1st Gulf war and should not be pushed aside.

  64. I have had some amount of experience with the C&P folks, and it has been my experience that it is always to your benefit to include a reference to every single visit to any doctor, hospital, clinic, dispensary, etc., including military, VA and civilian facilities. To that end, I usually try to have the latest copy of my records that I can get, just to use as a reference while writing my statement. Remember this one thing: Your claim is not nearly as important to them as it is to you. They will probably not go through your records as closely as you would, so always make reference to everything relevant to your claim. (You know, lead them by the hand, show them every little detail.) The tricky part is to do this without going on for so long that they get bored to death while reading your statement. There is a very fine line in striking that balance. Good luck with your claim, and be prepared to wait a while. They aren’t in any hurry, either.

  65. I have fought since 1979 for a VA Disability Rating. I have about given up, but my local VSO has assured me he is with me all the way. A good man. I would like to know where I can contact someone so I can show my respect for this man. Any ideas. I live in Anderson, IN

  66. I have filed a claim with the VA Feb 8th 2009. The Rep for whom failed to file what he told my wife and I he would do. He would not return phone calls e-mails ext… upon looking into this-I decided to enlist the help of Sen.Carl Levin from our great state of Michigan. I was sent asap a form letter to sign to give him the permission he and his staff needed. I will say this,they were prompt and very nice in responses.
    I suffer from MST/PTSD, and medical issues. I have letters from my doctors rating me at 100% .
    This event took place in the US Army back in 1971. In short-it was a very bad situation for which if I talked well you get the picture. I buried the event as if it did not take place until 2005 when it came out like an atom bomb. Messed me up badly I must tell you.
    To update this-I finely got my claims corrected with much effort and the help of Sen.Levin’s office.
    Went through my interview in which they failed to have my c-files on hand. Image that one! They had over two months to get them there and failed an easy task. She wanted to know if I wanted to wait till she got my c-file? Heck no-I would just have to wait months for the next one.
    We went through it and she wrote down some notes on the side of something. I had made a binder with copies of all information I had. She didn’t want it. Now why? It would have helped her out greatly. How many Vets take the time to do this?
    This was in 2010. For some unknown reason, they were given a 15 day period to reply with a decision and id approved, a rating. Both the Va and Sen.Levin’s office called me about this and said it was in the highest level. What ever that means.
    As of the writing of this letter, still no reply.
    So that is my story. Just like the military,hurry up and wait. wait-wait and more waiting.
    I am and will always be proud to have served our great country. I would go now if asked to defend her.
    However, why do Vets – mostly from that time, have to endure this? Those from Iraq seem to come first. Tell me why. Just about every Vet from my time at the VA hospital in Ann Arbor Mi feel the same way.
    Justice and fairness is all we want. To be looked at as we should be. To have any and all claims looked at in an open and fair manner. And a response sure would be nice.
    Rory R Jones
    U>S Army 1971-74

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