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Military Guys --VA Disability

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by marine_enlisted, Dec 4, 2003.

  1. marine_enlisted

    marine_enlisted 1/2 ton status

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    So, today I attended the final day of TAP class. A representative from the Regional VA Office in D.C. came to give us our VA benefits brief. He touched on home loans, GI Bill and some other issues, but his main focus was disability. He gave us a $hit load of info on this topic. There were about 50 Marines in the room , half of which being retirees ,the other half just getting out. He tells us all to stand and tells us if we are claiming any type of disability to sit down. Half of the room takes a seat(mostly the retirees) I remained standing since I havn't really had any injuries. He then asks us who are still standing if we have had shin splints,indegestion,headaches,back aches,ingrown toenails,have any scars, ...basically any little aches or pains. Also known as sand in your clit. As all you Marines know if you report to medical with any of those symptoms you will be given Motrin and sent on your way. The VA rep tells us that all of those are a disability. He said he had a retiree come and talk to him last year who had no claims, but once he was done with him the guy was found to be 70% disabled.

    He gave us all the forms and info necessary to file claims on this stuff. With what he said I have about 6 different items that I will claim. He said as long as it happened on active duty, is documented, and could possibly have long term effects, it will most likely be approved. I find it all hard to believe , but he said submit it and find out. The worst that can happen is they tell you no.

    Apparently the reason he gave us all this info is because up until now the VA hasn't been so informative and people separating have no idea that they can claim their problems as a disability.

    Do any of you have any insight on this? /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif
     
  2. jekbrown

    jekbrown I am CK5 Premium Member GMOTM Winner Author

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    yeah, my knees felt like crap after super squad (guess running in full gear + packs on asphault for mile after mile is a bad thing, who knew) and I filed all the paperwork for disability. When i was in i got quite a bit of lightduty and the joint gurus said my cartilege was hamburger. When i got out, I went in to see a doctor at a VA hospital so they could evaluate it for disability etc, they called it normal wear and tear, or "getting old" (i was 22 at the time) and sent me on my way. never got any kind of disability. zip zero nada. If it makes ya feel any better, everyone getting out gets the "you can get hella disability!" pep talk from the VA guy.

    j
     
  3. marine_enlisted

    marine_enlisted 1/2 ton status

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    That's kinda what I figured , you fill out a bunch of paperwork and get screwed. /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif
     
  4. Goober

    Goober 1/2 ton status

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    If you actually DO have an injury that you got while you were on active duty that could affect your abilities for the rest of your life then do whatever you think is best. Serious, permanent injuries can severely limit your ability to earn a living in some fields.

    But, just because you CAN do something doesn't mean you SHOULD. The fact that you have a disability could also limit some of the opportunities that you may have in the future. Your disability could come up when you are trying to get bonded, get insurance (life, health and other), apply for a government job and in many other circumstances.


    In my experience (I ETS'ed from active duty Army twice. 1987 and 1993) those guys are a bunch of yahoos that are trying to get as many folks dependent on the government as possible.


    If you have a legitimate claim then file the necessary paperwork for your own protection. Don't just claim you have a permanent hangnail from an injury you got while on-duty just to collect a tiny check each month, it will be more trouble then it's worth. Not to mention the fact that it would be marginably truthful.



    There's my $ .02
     
  5. Stickseler

    Stickseler 3/4 ton status

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    Yep they gave us the same speel when I got out. I just made sure I had documentation before I got my 214 and had a legal copy of my complete medical records made plus all the info from the civilian doctors I had been sent to. Nothing like breaking both ankles and cracking your patella for some scar tissue and bone spurs /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
     
  6. skratch

    skratch 1/2 ton status

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    If you have no real injuries I wouldn't worry about it at all, like the others said it can be a real headache with the paperwork.

    But on the other hand if you do have a legitimit injury then I would seek the compensation for it. I blew both knees out while i was in the service (who knew jumping 6 feet off the back of a truck every day could hurt you). I see the VA Dr. a couple times a year and have already had to have surgery on both of them since I got out. There is no way I could have paid for the care I have needed on my own.

    They did try to get me to file for other injuries I had in the service, like getting my feet run over by a truck (broke 8 of my toes that time, with steel toes on!), a scar on my face from a door hitting me in the face when the wind caught it. Just stupid stuff that really won't affect me later in life. I only sought compensation for my knees becasue it does make working as a driver painfull and difficult and I won't be able to stay in that profession near as long due to the injuries.

    I guess the best thing to do would be just use your best judgment. IF it's an injury you feel you would seek care for later in life, and may affect your livelyhood then go for it, otherwise I wouldn't bother.

    That's just my 2 cents.

    /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif
     
  7. Bubba Ray Boudreaux

    Bubba Ray Boudreaux 1 ton status

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    I got the same speech when I was getting out. Asked me if I had any injuries, basically naming everything you mentioned. Back in '95.
     
  8. SkulzNBonz

    SkulzNBonz 1/2 ton status

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    Yep same speech. Got rated at 0%. Somehow during all this, I was given a lifetime membership to the DAV. Also, being in the Gulf War, I went through a study at the VA in Sepulveda. I now have a VA card that takes care of any medical problems that may occur. I have good health insurance at work, so I haven't been to a VA hospital in 8-9 years, but I still got my card /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    John
     
  9. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    [ QUOTE ]
    yeah, my knees felt like crap after super squad (guess running in full gear + packs on asphault for mile after mile is a bad thing, who knew) and I filed all the paperwork for disability. When i was in i got quite a bit of lightduty and the joint gurus said my cartilege was hamburger. When i got out, I went in to see a doctor at a VA hospital so they could evaluate it for disability etc, they called it normal wear and tear, or "getting old" (i was 22 at the time) and sent me on my way. never got any kind of disability. zip zero nada.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Damn.

    Honestly, I'm the exact same way. I've put out $3k of my own money to find out that my feet are completely flat and that neither of my knees will ever be the same again. Not wanting to whine about "sand in my clit" I never really complained enough while I was still on active duty. Some days, I'm really hurting. It's hard to drive or climb ladders or even stand up some days when your knee feels like its gonna explode. I still never regret my military service, but AFIAK, I'm not entitled to any compensation becuase it was in training that this happened.

    It sucks because I really feel like whiner now, because everyone never really hears me complain about it....but I can't really do any of the things I used to do, and enjoy it.
     
  10. landsmasher

    landsmasher 1/2 ton status

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    It doesn't matter if it's service related or not. I went to the VA hospital a few years ago with a double hernia. (I got out in 1974....) Had an operation and fixed both hernias. It was all free. I still have my card.... If you don't have a card yet, get one. All you need is your DD214.

    /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  11. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    [ QUOTE ]
    It doesn't matter if it's service related or not. I went to the VA hospital a few years ago with a double hernia. (I got out in 1974....) Had an operation and fixed both hernias. It was all free. I still have my card.... If you don't have a card yet, get one. All you need is your DD214.

    /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    You have to be veteran, don't you?
     
  12. Bubba Ray Boudreaux

    Bubba Ray Boudreaux 1 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    [ QUOTE ]
    It doesn't matter if it's service related or not. I went to the VA hospital a few years ago with a double hernia. (I got out in 1974....) Had an operation and fixed both hernias. It was all free. I still have my card.... If you don't have a card yet, get one. All you need is your DD214.

    /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    You have to be veteran, don't you?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Yes. What he means by service related is if the injury occurred while in the service while on duty.
     
  13. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    [ QUOTE ]
    [ QUOTE ]
    [ QUOTE ]
    It doesn't matter if it's service related or not. I went to the VA hospital a few years ago with a double hernia. (I got out in 1974....) Had an operation and fixed both hernias. It was all free. I still have my card.... If you don't have a card yet, get one. All you need is your DD214.

    /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    You have to be veteran, don't you?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Yes. What he means by service related is if the injury occurred while in the service while on duty.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    It did.
     
  14. jarheadk5

    jarheadk5 1/2 ton status

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    When I did TAP/TAMP in November 2000 (the first time......) I listened to the VA rep drone on about disability, and decided to give it a shot. When I did my seps physical and had to fill out the 10-page questionnaire, I complained about every little ache, pain, bump, sprain, twist, and occurence of SVS that I'd had in 8 years. Oh, plus the hearing loss from 7 years on the flightline. When the doctor asked me why I hadn't gone to Medical about the smaller stuff I told him my command(s) weren't real keen on "sick call commandos" so I handled the minor stuff myself. He noted all this stuff in my records too. After the corpsman got my record back from Medical, I checked it back out and photocopied EVERY PAGE twice; one for me, one for the VA. Did the VA paperwork for a disability claim, went to the VA hospital for an evaluation of my claim. About 2 months after EAS, I got a letter from the VA stating they had graded me as 10% disabled (the hearing loss and a slight shoulder injury), and I'd be receiving my first disability check shortly. I get $108 each month, pro-rated 'cause I'm in the Reserve. But the important part is that my claim is now on file, so when my hearing loss get worse with age, it's a fairly easy process to get my disability rating increased. This is opposed to starting fresh AFTER you're already out; it can take the VA over 6 months just to find your medical records in the Naval Records Repository in St. Louis (also known as the black hole...).

    I say do it. Might as well get compensated for the "normal" wear & tear you accumulated during your time in.

    BTW, I read somewhere that a study showed the average American infantryman puts 5 years of wear on his body for each year of service. So much for "normal"... /forums/images/graemlins/thinking.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thinking.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rolleyes.gif
     
  15. stallion85

    stallion85 1/2 ton status

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    I am sorry what did you write??? I couldn't pay attention with your avatar distracting me!! /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif
     

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