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You quit when the gorilla is tired."  —  Robert Straus

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​​Alabama

​V A Claims Intake Center
PO BOX 4444
JANESVILLE, WI

53547- 4444
Toll Free Fax:

844-531-7818​

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James Shields, MD, MBA...A Board Certified Physician

Veteran   Spine Pain, Weakness, Stiffness, Neck or Cervical Pain, Fibromyalgia,

​Intervertebral Disk Syndrome, Decreased Range of Motion, Degenerative Arthritis

of the Spine, Hip Pain or Weakness, Shoulder Pain or Weakness

Talk With Dr. Shields About An IMO, DBQs

or a Nexus Letter For Your Claim or Appeal

Stateside Legal Help For Veterans

Gregory Rada

Veterans Law Attorney

Greg served in the Air Force as a C-17 loadmaster in both Operations Enduring

Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.  Greg's practice includes VA disability compensation

appeals, Individual Unemployability (TDIU) claims, MST, PTSD and other mental health disability claims and appeals and other veterans disability claims processes. Attorney

Rada offers free telephone case evaluations as well as nationwide representation.

Call today!    844-838-7529

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 Brett Valette, Ph.D.

Providing Military Veterans Personalized Psychological and Medical Evaluations. Complete the Contact form, and you'll get a personal phone call from us. We listen, and want to know what you are going through. We provide Independent Medical Evaluations (IME), Independent Medical Opinions (IMO) and nexus letters for ratings reviews, secondary conditions, medical conditions, discharge upgrades, and many types of denied claims.  We also provide Social Security Disability claim reports.

Some Wounds Can't Be Seen        Contact Us Today

Jim Strickland is a Vietnam era Army veteran and nationally recognized expert on VA

disability benefits. Jim writes extensively about VA and Social Security disability benefits. 
Jim's Mailbag is a regular column featured at  Stateside Legal  where veterans, servicemembers,

and family members can  ask Jim their questions  about VA and Social Security disability benefits. 

Question:
My rating increased to 100% P&T increasing my benefits. SNAP reduced my food stamps from several hundred dollars to $18. The food stamps helped offsetting cost for groceries. I thought SNAP puts Veterans with 100% P&T in a different category as disabled. I spoke with the SNAP personnel and they said that my monthly income is over their eligibility. Any advice?
Reply:
Advice? Sure. Any time we apply for anything we should read the fine print and understand what we're getting into. You apparently had no clue you were facing a means test and that's on you.
Most financial benefits awarded to use for one reason or another are means tested. Means testing tells us that the agency will examine our 'means' or our finances to determine what they may offer us to bring us up to a certain level of financial health. 
It stands to reason that if you already have (x) amount of money that they won't give you more. I'm not sure what made you think you'd be able to keep everything but that was not correct and I can't think of anything else to do but to be appreciative of your new VA benefits and to adjust your budget appropriately.

Question:
How to convert/change a TDIU rating into P&T?
Reply:
The 100% Total Disability Individual Unemployability (TDIU) rating is often Permanent and Total (P & T) although it may be a temporary rating with a future exam scheduled. 
I think what you're asking is probably how to convert a 100% TDIU rating to a 100% schedular rating and the answer is we don't do that. The two ratings are exactly the same other than the TDIU rated veteran isn't allowed to work at 'gainful employment'...a more or less full time job.
Veterans who want to convert from TDIU to schedular 100% ratings so they can work full time are often surprised that their TDIU rating falls to the underlying rating and they lose the 100%.
Be careful what you ask for...VA may deliver.

Question:
Hello Jim, can you explain the 55-year-old protected ratings VA rule? Thanks
Reply:
You're a bit off track...there is no such thing as a 55 year old protected rating rule. The "protected rating" is a topic that creates a lot of confusion so let me begin by saying there is no such thing as a protected rating. VA can and will investigate possible fraud no matter how long you've held a given rating. 
There is some protection after you hold a rating for a long while that says that the rating won't change even if the underlying law changes. Age 55 is the usual point that ratings may be made permanent rather than temporary and doesn't have anything to do with protecting a rating.
In the end no rating is ever really protected from VA so we should always be on the lookout for any VA shenanigans. 

Question: Seeing how I was at 90%, my lawyers highly suggested that I filing for TDIU. Fast forward, I was granted TDIU. However, I hate the fact that I am unable to work to include capped financially knowing I have high earning potential. I would have preferred 100% scheduler and/or P/T instead of TDIU. At least with 100% scheduler and/or P/T a veteran is not capped financially and able to continue earning and feel worth/not worthless. Of course, I should be happy (shut up and color) that the VA understood my multiple chronic disabilities thus granting me TDIU... My question is; how to convert/change TDIU to 100% P/T? Is that evening possible? How would the change impact my overall case for 100% P/T?

Jim's Reply: I hate to tell you this but these aren't choices you get to make. This is how the system works and it won't adapt to you because you think it should. If you are so confident that you have a very high income potential, why don't you simply return to work? It was many many years ago that I was very relieved to get my TDIU rating and prior to that I had a very high income. If I had been able to return to work I'd have traded that for the TDIU rating in a heartbeat.You're asking to keep your rating of 100%, maximize the money VA is giving you yet you insist that you don't really need these benefits because you are very able to work.Trying to turn a 100% TDIU rating to a schedular rating almost always ends up with the vet losing the TDIU and reverting to the base rate...in your case, 90%. ​​

The laws that govern the sales and purchases of weapons and ordnance very wildly across America with the federal government, each state, every municipality and some private communities each developing their own laws, rules and regulations.

The Mother Ship for all enforcement is National Instant Criminal Background Check System or NICSIn addition to federally prohibitive criteria, the NICS must delay or deny firearm transfers based on applicable state law. A delayed transaction will be purged from the NICS within 88 days from creation. The NICS Section recommends that you wait 30 days from the date initiating the check prior to filing an appeal on a delay to give the NICS Section’s staff time to complete the initial transaction. If your original background check is completed, the Federal Firearm Licensee ​will be notified with a final status.​If you're denied for any reason, you'll have to appeal. Read up on Firearm-Related Challenge (Appeal) and Voluntary Appeal File (VAF) as well as the Federal Categories of Persons Prohibited from Receiving Firearms ​​

Department of Veterans Affairs Guns and Weapons   Concealed Carry Permits   

FBI-NICS   Firearms PTSD and Other Mental Health Conditions

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Denis McDonough
Secretary of Veterans Affairs

Are You Rated For A Spine Condition?

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How to file a VA

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Find out how to file a claim for disability compensation

or increased disability compensation.

 Code of Federal Regulations

Title 38 - Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief

​Volume: 1

Date: 2019-07-01

Original Date: 2019-07-01

Title: PART 17 - MEDICAL 

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Welcome  Home!  I'm  Jim Strickland.  I'm an Army vet, I was 91-D20 in USAREUR at ​the

98th General Hospital near  Camp Baumholder 1967 - 1970.  I publish the VAWatchdog

Dot Org to help you obtain the benefits you earned by your service  to our country. 

I'll also share what I'm reading today, the important stuff. An informed veteran

​is a successful veteran.  Feedback  is always welcomed.

Veterans Law Attorney Drew Early
Graduate of the US Military Academy West Point
20 years of active Army service, multiple deployments, tours with 2 Infantry

Division, 10th Mountain Division , XVIII Airborne Corps, and Third Army,

Airborne and Master Explosive Ordnance Disposal badges.

Graduate of the Command and General Staff College Master's Degree in

Strategic Planning from the School of Advanced Military Studies

Get In Touch With Drew Today

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Thomas Grieder, MD PhD

25 Years Service as a VA Psychiatrist

Lead Psychiatrist East Los Angeles

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Veterans Law Attorney Texas

Veteran Disability Claims 

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When You Hit A Dead End

The Department of Veterans Affairs

​White House Hotline

855 - 948 - 2311    

< Denis.McDonough@va.gov >


Yes, this really works. No, it doesn't ring in the White House. The email address and phone number are staffed by a seemingly serious group of players, many who are veterans, and if you have a legit issue, telling these folks is like bringing in the artillery. Let's prepare  for your call or email. Make some notes before you proceed so you don't forget anything. I prefer email since there's no waiting for someone to answer and I can take my time to prepare the story in just the right detail. Be sure to include your DOB, your last 4, contact info...a couple of numbers, your preferred email and such. Describe the problem as briefly as you can.  Less is more.  Include the necessary components but don't tell your life story.  Don't rant.  Be polite...military courtesy will get you places that hollering  IN ALL CAPS  won't.  Respect!  Don't waste their time with bogus complaints about your feelings being hurt. If you appropriately utilize this service, I'll vouch that this works like a champ. Tell them you read about this at The VAWatchdog Dot Org...they know who we are.

You may file claims on  eBenefits  or you can mail them in using certified mail or you can even fax them in. 

Download VA benefit letters
To receive some benefits, Veterans need a letter proving their status. 

Jim Strickland

jim912@gmail.com

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When the examiner says, “more likely than not”

or “at least as likely as not”, how

does that affect the outcome of your claim?

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