Veteran Disability Claims 

Nexus and IMO Letters

Do you need some help with your claim?

I'm accepting limited appointments to talk live on the phone or to videoconference with you. There is no fee for this service.

If you'd like to talk, provide me with some information about who you are and what's up and I'll be in touch.  /s/ Jim

When You Hit A Dead End

The Department of Veterans Affairs

​White House Hotline

855 - 948 - 2311    

< >

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.

​​​​The VA Watchdog Dot Org

Since 2005, We're Keeping An Eye On Your VA

Because Somebody Has To!​

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 share what I'm reading today, the important stuff.  Feedback  is always welcomed.

​NO DIGITAL ADVERTISING means no ad-trackers. Nobody is looking at your data here.

Drew Early

Veterans Law Attorney
 Graduate of the US Military Academy West Point, 20 years of active Army service, multiple deployments,

XVIII Airborne Corps, and Third Army, Airborne and Master Explosive Ordnance Disposal badges. 

Free Case Assessment - Nationwide Representation

Welcome to the KnowVA Knowledge Base

Locate information more quickly and efficiently

Stateside Legal Help For Veterans

Where did your claim disappear to?

Veterans hit by huge pandemic-related records backlog
National Archives estimates it will take 18 to 24 months to clear the backlog once the records center is fully staffed

New financial tool provides Veterans more control and transparency

Any Veteran with a debt related to VA benefits can now access their debt information online

 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 

The secret truth of the student debt crisis

Most student debt will be canceled sooner or later, because an ever-growing share

of borrowers cannot possibly repay their loans. Ever. 

Veterans Affairs:Use of Additional Funding for COVID-19 Relief

​As of April 14, 2021, the Department of Veterans Affairs reported 224,538 cumulative 

COVID-19 cases among veterans, with 11,366 deaths.

Never Stop Reading

Never Stop Learning

Rates of Parkinson’s disease are exploding.

A common chemical - trichloroethylene (TCE) - may be to blame

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General

​Fraud Alert: COVID-19 Scams

COVID-19 fraud is rapidly evolving. This page is frequently updated.

38 CFR Book C 

Schedule for Rating Disabilities

"It's a little like wrestling a gorilla. You don't quit when you're tired.

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

How To

When you deal with your VA benefits there are dozens, maybe hundreds of resources on the Internet, usually way too complex

to read or they want your money to open their do you choose where to take advice and council?  I think I have

the answer. When you want to deal with your VA, whether you're filing a claim or trying to get along with your health care providers,

you need to hear the voice of a veteran who actually uses the VA. I'm in the process of providing that resource for you...for free.

No sign-up, no registration, instant access to reliable information. It's your VA, use it effectively.

This is a Work In Progress throughout 2021. Check back every now and then for updates.

Jim’s Everyday Guide to Veterans Benefits

Let's File A Claim

Filing your claim for VAbenefits isn't as hard as some want you to believe. Let's set the effective date of any claim you file in the next year. This one is easy so let's do it right now.

Intent To File A Claim Form

American Rescue Plan Helps Veterans
As part of the American Rescue Plan, the Veteran Rapid Retraining Assistance Program (VRRAP)

provides financial aid to help you recover from the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Learn if you're eligible and how to apply!

Medical Experts For Veterans Disability Claims 

Serving Veterans, Service Officers, & Attorneys since 2015 

Nexus Letters / Medical Opinions  -  Get Started Now

Roger Hale, Esq.

​Veterans Law Attorney        Personal Injury Law

Nationwide Representation        Free Veterans Consultations
Workers Compensation  -  Social Security Disability  -  Pain & Suffering  -  Emotional & Mental Anguish​​

Veterans unemployed due to pandemic now eligible for VA job training funds

​VRRAP covers education and training programs approved under the GI Bill and Veteran Employment

Through Technology Education Courses, or VET TEC, that lead to high-demand jobs.

These include associate degrees, non-college degrees, and certificate programs.


​V A Claims Intake Center
PO BOX 4444

53547- 4444
Toll Free Fax:


Gregory Rada  Veterans Law Attorney

Military Veteran - Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom

VA disability appeals, TDIU claims, MST, PTSD, other mental health disability claims, appeals and veterans disability claims processes.

Attorney Rada offers free telephone case evaluations and nationwide representation.

Interest rate reduction refinance loan
If you have an existing VA-backed home loan and you want to reduce your monthly mortgage payments—

or make your payments more stable—an interest rate reduction refinance loan (IRRRL) may be right for you.

Veterans Psych Evaluations
 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. 

Type your paragraph here.

Social Security benefits are often available to the disabled veteran. There are plenty of twists and turns here though and the benefits aren't anywhere close to being the same.

You may be eligible for one but not the other! The VA rates you on the degree of disability that was incurred while you were on active duty. Those 10 point increments are added up with the very strange VA math that's used to determine your overall rating.

The SSA rates you as either totally disabled and unable to work at all or not.

Often enough age will play into it and the SSA will see you as employable until age 55 and then you're pretty much over the hill and the SSA will give you a break.

If you are eligible for both SSA and VA benefits, study them carefully to learn how best to use the services provided.

There is some overlap that you may not need and there are personal decisions you need to make about your overall health care and you need to be aware of all of it.

These are great benefits and it's worth your time to learn all you can about them.

Veterans Social Security Disability Benefits

Question: I was granted TDIU for a service connected disability. I am also receiving retirement pay from civil service. I never filed for disability from civil service. As a TDIU would I also be eligible for civil service disability?

Jim's Reply: I don't know. That would depend on the particular rules of the civil service agency you work for. Different business entities will each have their own rules and regs about what is or is not acceptable for their disability programs and ratings so you have to meet their standards. 
A good example is the SSDI program from the SSA. If you are rated as totally disabled by VA you'd think that the same would be applied by the SSA but the 2 organizations vary greatly when it comes to apply for disability and having one rating doesn't guarantee eligibility for another. can certainly look at never know. Good luck!

Question: I need help with family custody in Mass. Does anyone do pro bono? I'm not working right now.

​Jim's Reply: The sad fact of the matter is that there are very few reliable resources to assist anyone, veteran or civilian, with divorce, custody, support or any other marital disputes. Veterans don't get a break in this arena because this isn't a veteran problem, marriage and divorce are strictly civilian issues so like any civilian you're welcome to pay the lawyer you need.
Nobody wants to hear all the stories of your broken marriage and subsequent problems without being paid to do so. There are plenty of resources that can help families who fall on hard times because of illness or disaster and so on, but divorce is a particularly difficult process because of the emotions so nobody jumps in pro bono. Good luck.

Question: Jim, is there a Complaint Dept. for CHAMPVA? I mailed my wife's application to them in July with a receipt showing they signed for it. They say they do not have it. I'm concerned that they lost control of this and it has a lot of personal identity information on it. I have since faxed the same information to them with proof of them receiving this in July. I am still waiting on their process for the 2nd attempt. Seems as though their process of using mail / fax is a stone age process that is contributing to the issue. Please let me know on any suggestions with dealing with this. Thanks, Chris

​Jim's Reply: Yes! You're in luck. You've reached the CHAMPVA complaint department. I'm it!!! My wife has been dealing with them for years now and all I can tell you is's the VA! The VA seems to be on a path to try and make America's prison system look caring and efficient.
Patience, persistence and the willingness to perform every task twice...or all that's required. We've spent hours on hold only to be disconnected, certified mail is lost, voice mails are never answered...the list goes on and on.
It gets better. The CHAMPVA offices communicate with the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) by what may be one of the earliest fax machines in existence. Other than by fax, I don't believe there is any other communication between email. no phone calls...nothing that I'm aware of.
The moral to this story is the same as everything else VA. You have to put in the time to get the proper result and you have to understand this is how it is and not let it drive you off the deep end. Anger is wasted here, they're herd it all before and until Congress acts. nothing can or will happen.
The good news is that once the insurance is in place, it's as good as anything you'll find on the market today and you aren't paying a monthly premium.
A word of caution...spend time before you accept a service and be sure that CHAMPVA will pay for it and there won't be any surprises. Some preventive services have restrictions but again, if you do your homework you'll eventually be very happy you have the insurance.

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

Were you hazed while serving in the military? GAO may want to hear from you

​The Government Accountability Office is looking for service members who were victims of hazing while they served.

The office is collecting the information for a study on the Defense Department’s efforts to prevent and respond to hazing.

The Government Accountability Office



Military Records

Veterans PTSD Assessments

Independent Medical Opinions  Nexus Letters

Thomas Grieder, MD PhD

25 Years Service as a VA Psychiatrist

Lead Psychiatrist East Los Angeles

PTSD Clinical Team

Get In Contact With Dr. Grieder 

$113.1 Billion Discretionary VA Bill for ’22 Submitted

​The Biden administration’s proposed $113.1 billion spending bill for the Department of Veterans Affairs addresses delivery of health-care services, homelessness, suicide prevention, support for caregivers, and technological improvements.

CDC updates guidance on how COVID-19 spreads

​The CDC updated its guidance on COVID-19 transmission May 7,

underscoring that the virus spreads via small respiratory droplets and particles in the air.

Dependents & Survivor Benefits    Specializing In Veterans Law  Federal Tort Claims  Disability Claims

Free Veterans Case Reviews     Nationwide Representation

Veterans Struggle to Get Copies of Needed Service Records Due to Pandemic
Access to some VA benefits, services delayed as backlog of requests hits 500,000

The National Personnel Records Center (NPRC)

The Government

​Fascinating historical documents, reports on items in the news, oddities and fun stuff and government bloopers, they're all here.

How to file a VA

disability claim
Find out how to file a claim for disability compensation

or increased disability compensation.

Three Consequences of Using Marijuana After Your State “Legalizes”

​1. Marijuana users will fail future NICS firearm background checks. 


​Lodging & Camping in southern Illinois with access to the Shawnee National​

We offer lodging, camping,

​stabling, corral, pasture,

access to a hunting lease and

discounts for America's

military veterans!

I'm Jim Strickland

and ​I approve of this message.

Thomas J. Seiter, Jr., M.D.

DBQs   Nexus Letters Medical Records Reviews  

Independent Medical Opinions

Nationwide Representation

Get Started
Two options explaining the

Benefits you've earned.

Vaccine Eligibility Expanded at DoD Sites

All eligible and authorized TRICARE beneficiaries and Defense Department personnel

can now get vaccinated for Covid-19 at DoD sites.