Well, I just called the DAV up in DC. They informed me that they should get to my claim next year Jan to Feb. I was like wow that long huh?. So it might take more then 8 months. They are currently working on '06 dockets. Mine is 07. Does docket number mean that the if I was to win, payment would start from 2007? If so, how can I go about getting the date change to the right date of 2003 when I submitted the same evidence that I have always submitted? My personal believe is that the VA shafted me and drag me along waiting to see if I would give up. I didn't. If the same evidence was submitted that is the same as what was submit when the claim was first filed i should be paid from the earlier date, regardless if I let the one year time pass due to various factors, one including the illness itself(major depression).that led me to doubt myself in getting my just deserves. Why? because it the EVIDENCE is the same. What say you?
The date the claim was filed is the date from which you receive back pay. It has nothing to do with the appeal date. So as long as the claim has been open and under adjudication without a pause of more than a year, you will receive back pay from day one.
Yeah, hang in there!!!
I re-opened my claim in 1994 and it didn't get finalized(in my favor)until June of 2000.Spent the better part of 3 years dealing with the BVA, and in all honesty(at least from what I could "see"), the problem(s)were created and exsisted due to my VA Regional Office(VARO,Boston Ma), NOT the BVA in DC.
I got "remanded"(case sent back to originating VARO for additional information and/or workup) for the EXACT SAME THING THREE TIMESbecause my VARO either couldn't or wouldn't do what had to be done right.
I had the EXACT SAME "C&P" exam(spine)4 times in the space of right around 9 months.
First time the examiner didn't do it right(there are VERY specific guidelines that have to be adhered to in C&P exams), I filed an "NOD" about it.
Second "C&P" for the exact same thing, Good Doc, did good job, VARO either wrote the results wrong or applied the wrong policy or CFR reg to it.
THIRD "C&P" for the exact same thing(not 2 or 3 months later), had same Doc as #2, he looks at me and says "didn't I just examine you couple months ago??", I said "yes, you did" and handed him my copy of the "C&P" he had done for the exact same reason couple-3 months back. He picked up the phone, called over to the VARO, got someone pretty high up the chain there, and pretty much tore 'em a new one for not doing there part of the deal right. Remember last thing he said into the phone before he hung it up was "and whaddaya think, this guys gotten better since I saw him", hung up the phone and gave me an even more thorough exam, which was more to my favor.
The last "C&P" exam(number 4), done in the space of right around a year, for the EXACT SAME REASON(spine), was done by the Head of Neurology of 3 fairly large VA Medical Centers in the Greater Boston area, and was done specifically at the request of the BVA in Wash DC, and the results were sent directly to the BVA in DC. It was to confirm new "stuff" the "C&P" Exam Doc had uncovered in "C&P" #3!!
Which it did.
The BVA wrote my final decision and my award letter was written by the BVA, not my local VARO. I got my decision in the mail from the BVA in Wash DC, not my local VARO in Boston Ma.
The BVA in DC was NOT happy with my VARO after this and not long after it all happened the Manager at that VARO was gone.As were ALOT of that VARO's employees. There were ALOT of problems out of this VARO back then. May still be, I avoid dealing with them like the plague.
Anyways, I was 40% when I re-opened my claim in 1994, I got a couple small(10%)increases while it was workin its way thru the VA "system", and In June of 2000 the BVA awarded me 100% retroactive back to Feb of 1994. They paid my retro in 3 checks over the course of like 2 weeks(don't ask me why), and the total was right around $100K.
And you wouldn't be the 1st one to think that the VA was dicking you around in hopes that you'd either die or go away, not by a long shot!!
So, if you think yer SC is worth more, and have some kind of documentation to prove what ya think its worth, hang in there and keep hammering them.
Calling 18008271000 isa waste of time, Ya used to be able(and maybe still can) call the BVA in DC direct.
Oh, and I went to all my hearings before the BVA in DC, I thankfully had "sand-bagged" a little coin while I could still work and could do it. Whether that actually made a diff I don't know, I tend to think it did. I was pretty angry and frustrated with my VARO by then(as I think the BVA was!!), and I think I was able to express that in a reasonably non-confrontational manner enough, both in writing and verbally, that the VBA got "on my side" and realized that I was right and my VARO, thru either not knowing or not caring, was wrong.
DO NOT be aggressive or confrontational in any form to any VA employee or entity of the VA, it don't work!!(ask me how I know this!!). You can express anger or frustration, but don't act out on it.
I almost got into a fistfight in the lobby of my VARO with one of that VARO's employees once.Incompetent, Lackey VA employee that thought he was right and I was wrong because he worked for the VA and I didn't. He got confrontational with me when I refused to back down in telling him he was wrong, which he was, and he came out from behind the counter and stood up all puffed out in front of me. I'm 6'3" and was about 260 at that time, most of it NOT fat(that has since changed!!).He was not and I guess believed the creedo "the bigger they are the harder they fall", which in my case is not the fact(ask me how I know this!!).
Anyways, a very well dressed, polite and distinguished looking African-American Gentleman came out fom the cubicles, seperated us, and took me out from the VARO's front lobby. He handed me his business card, apologized, and asked me "if I wanted to press charges". I looked at his business card, he was the regional Director from the baltimore regional office. I said "no, I don't wanna press charges, I just don't wanna be treated like that when I come in here ta do business". About a month later I got a letter of apology signed by him and that VARO's Manager.
As payment for that incident that VARO then "lost my file" for about 8 months.
Just a couple of the MANY "incidents" I experienced dealing with the VA at my VARO back then. All "water under the bridge" long gone and drained out by now.
Is it the same now?? Don't know, like I said earlier I avoid dealing with any VARO as much as possible. But if ya read some of the other posts on here and other Veterans Forums it sounds like it ain't changed all that much. Maybe different actors but the same mentality.
So, hang in there, and if ya think your right, don't give up.
VA's a huge government "machine", and its been "broke" for years-JRC
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