Whoa there, doggies. For all you guys from Michigan, back up the boat. NHL stands for Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. We don’t do sports or politics here.
Two things catch your eye about this. First, the correlation between the two diseases seems to be a reach. More importantly, the Introduction is the eye catcher. Remember I have frequently commented on the fact that most claimants who appeal to the CAVC are never heard from again? vA would say that’s because they realized that their claim had no merit so they abandoned it. Read this closely. The Vet is asking for a redo all the way back to the RO. The VASEC has decided to quit burdening the RO with this and move on to the next denial. Here is proof-positive that my theory holds water. Not only is his claim being granted, the BvA is interposing itself and granting without the additional trip back down to LARO. The fix is in. This doesn’t happen if the CAVC orders it to be vacated and remanded . The rules say this has to go all the way back to the AOJ for a de novo decision. The BvA appears to be bogarting it. This has the heavy hand of someone with a lot of power. Either that, or someone just donated a shit ton of money to Obama’s Re-Election Campaign Fund.
The issues on appeal were previously denied by the Board in a November 2007 decision. The Veteran appealed that decision to the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (Court). In a February 2010 Order, the Court vacated the November 2007 Board decision due to the Board’s failure to consider and discuss an October 2007 private medical report, and remanded the matter back to the Board.
The Board notes that in a June 2011 statement, the Veteran requested that this matter be remanded to the RO for review of newly submitted evidence prior to the Board’s consideration of the matter. However, as the claims on appeal are being granted, the Board finds there is no risk of prejudice to the Veteran from proceeding without first returning the matter to the RO.
Moving on, we have an interesting decision here. vA and medical science have always been in contention on ionizing versus non-ionizing radiation as the progenitor of cancers. Here they have gone down the “direct” route rather than the ionizing route. The power of the nexus is on display here as well as the ignorance of the RO raters. I often joke about it taking 10 years to get any justice and here comes this piece of work. The Vet filed in Juneish 2002. It’s September 2011. The guys from the BvA are all high-fiving and fistbumping. This is proof that the system works the way it’s supposed to- delay and deny until we die. This Vet happened to hang on to life long enough to win. I’m betting he’s starting the long road to Fendersonville for a long overdue staged rating.
It’s exciting to see that Justice Happens. Perhaps vA will come out with a catchy bumper sticker that embodies that thought. They can tuck it in with the clean socks and the new toothbrush when they are visiting Homeless Vets at the Wall.
Meet the LA Miracle.
In spite of the joy I feel at this Vet’s success, the prospect of having to fight down in the weeds over the meaning of minor versus major weight loss has just begun. Whether he is suffering from near-constant debilitating symptoms or just symptoms of more than six weeks in duration but not debilitating all the time will become the focus of his next appeal. It could be worse. vA has yet to ask a claimant to define what the meaning of “is” is.