actual VA c-files

It never ceases to amaze me what some of you are forced to go through to pry a copy of your c-file out of the cold, deadly fingers of the Regional Offices. The stories I have heard make me ashamed to think the Veterans Administration can hold its head high and proclaim they represent us and our interests.

A c-file, more properly called  a claims file, is a compendium of everything that has transpired between you and the VA. Every letter you have submitted, every Vocational Rehabilitation or training program you have ever attended courtesy of the VA; in sum, any conversation you have engaged in on the 800-827-1000 Dialing for Dollars/Prize Redemption Center is compiled there to better understand you and your gripe/claim.


Please be advised you should read my newer post here on the upgraded version of the best way to obtain your claims file–

When you have a protracted battle with the VA, this file can become an interesting repository of information-not all of which you are aware of. VA is not in the habit of “cc: the Vet”. In fact, when it comes time to appeal and stand your ground, you need the information in the file to assemble your defense. You may have lost a copy of something you mailed them. You may want to refresh your memory of the circumstances surrounding the claim. Of most import, you need to make sure there are no extraneous records from other Vets that have inadvertently been associated with your file. When I finally received my second copy following my loss at the BVA in 2012, the first thing I discovered were records of another Vet and internal memos from the VA  confirming rental of a ballroom near the Seattle Tacoma Airport for a scheduled conference. Oh, and a few cartoons from one rater to another.

Another major reason for obtaining your file is to be certain everything you have submitted as evidence actually made it there and was included. VA’s propensity to drop c-files and “accidentally” spill some into the waiting jaws of a shredder are fairly well documented. Thus, if you filed for things in 2008 and decide to reopen them in 2013, it is possible your file has suffered “shrinkage” without your knowledge. Regardless of the reason, you need your own copy in case VA’s magnificent computers crash some day and we have to revert back to the old trustworthy analog version that VA still currently employs. VA’s take on this is that the c-file is inviolate and closely guarded against any untoward insertions of a spurious nature or, God forbid, another Vet’s records. In the absence of verification, your c-file actually comprises whatever VA says it does and you have no legal recourse to do or say otherwise. This is the “Presumption of Regularity” clause that holds VA is presumed to do everything correctly unless you have incontrovertible proof to the contrary. With a copy of your c-file in your own hands, you in essence protect the VA from themselves. It”s a win-win for everyone but the VA doesn’t exactly see it that way. To their way of thinking, you have no business nosing around their file. Only VSO service reps who don’t know what they’re doing are permitted this luxury-unsupervised no less.

On occasion, and ever more frequently in the wake of a protracted backlog, the VA is getting further and further behind in requests for copies of our files. I would point to one example which is extremely outlandish-our very own Leigh Ann and her two year battle to obtain her file to see why VA is denying her.

I have taught that part of winning is being able to comprehend the reason for a denial in the first place. In a more perfect world, we would all file the bulletproof claim described in my book and win. End of story. In the real world of 85% denials, however, it becomes necessary to study your files to grasp the reason for an unjust denial. This also gives you the needed ammo to craft a better case and win it.

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) gives us certain rights and the VA is required to comply with them or face censure. This rarely daunts them. Upon request, they are legally required to hop to it and get a copy of your file to you within ninety days or face the consequences of failing to do so. To date, Vets have yet to see the consequences of VA refusals, but that isn’t the subject of this lesson.

The Veterans Benefits Manual, put out by the National Veterans Legal Service Program (NVLSP), has just the ticket. They have several sample letters for Advocates, such as lawyers or VSOs, to employ that incorporate the legal euphemisms and statutes that make the little pukes down at the ROs quail. I have taken the liberty of massaging them for use by self-represented, pro se Vets. You really don’t need any help getting the file regardless of the VSOs’ argument that you can’t go to the VA bathroom without them.

Herewith, I print for you a sample letter you can copy and paste directly into a Micro Word program. Be sure to send it Certified mail, return receipt requested otherwise VA will claim they have never seen it and are terribly sorry.

FOIA / Privacy Act Officer

VA Regional Office

1234 Yellow Brick Road

Oz, Kansas 60609

 Re:     Joseph Average Veteran

 VA Claim Number: 12 345 678

Social Security Number: 987-65-4321

Dear Sir or Ma’am:

This is a request for documents under 38 U.S.C. §§ 5701(b)(1) and 5702; 38 C.F.R. §§ 1.525, 1.526, and 1.577 (2011); and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C.  § 552, on behalf of myself, Joseph Average Veteran.

I hereby request a copy of all documents contained in  my VA claims folder, to include all documents in the right flap, left flap and center flap, as well as any temporary files. Please forward the copied documents directly to me at the following address:

 [your address here]

 As provided in the FOIA, please respond to this request within 20 (twenty) business-days. I may be contacted at (202) 867-5309 if there are any questions. Thank you for your assistance.


(don’t forget to sign here)

  Joseph Average Veteran

A sidebar here. The left flap of a c-file contains dependency issues-i.e. your spouse and children, how much (if any) they are being paid, etc. The center flap is all the judicial decisions, ratings and your correspondence with them. The right flap contains anything of or having to do with Vocational Rehabilitation matters, training, Independent Living Program etc.

Now, since we live in an imperfect world where 20 days in VA time is measured in Jupiter days, we often are required to send a polite reminder a month or more later to remind them that somehow, due to some glitch that they are probably unaware of, your request has been waylaid, misplaced or otherwise is temporarily unavailable for viewing. This second missive should not be judgmental or confrontational. Discussions about VA employees being raised by wolves are inappropriate because you do not have anything more than anecdotal proof. VA calls this “speculative”. A simple recital of the events and date of the last letter as well as the USPS Certified Mail tracking number and a full-color copy of your green card (both sides) showing it was signed for by _______ _. ______ is usually sufficient. For entertainment value, you can go to my widget VARO Who’s Who at the top of the page and look up the employees of your local RO. The lowest paid GS mailroom employee who signed for it will probably be listed there in the event his signature is illegible. You can show your familiarity with the system by correctly spelling out his name and GS rating as the one who acknowledged receipt of same. This really rolls their socks down. I send this after they do not respond to my first request.

After a suitable time waiting and hearing nothing, it is then time to “take it up a notch”. Here’s letter number three. This, you will notice, is to the Head Office (Office of General Counsel or OGC) asking them to see to it that their hired help get off their poor, tired, bonus-calloused asses and make a copy of your c-file and be quick about it. Again, no talk of wolf parentage. Be polite. I have always known Veterans to be cultured, well brought up and patient so please do not sully our good name.

Department of Veterans Affairs

 Office of General Counsel (024)

810 Vermont Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20420


 Joseph Average Veteran

C- file # 123-45-6789

To Whom It May Concern:

 This letter constitutes an administrative appeal of Department of Veterans Affairs (“VA”) action concerning a request for documents made under 38 U.S.C. §§ 5701(b)(1) and 5702; 38 C.F.R. §§ 1.525, 1.526, and 1.577 (2011), and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. § 552.

 In a letter dated  (month day, year), I submitted a FOIA request for documents on behalf of  myself  to the _(city)_, _(state)_VA Regional Office (VARO). See Attachment A. I requested a copy of all documents contained in my VA claims file. A certified mail return receipt shows that the RO received this request for documents on (month day, year). See Attachment B.  However, to date, I have received no response to this request.

 The failure of the VA to respond to this request is in clear violation of 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(6)(A)(i), which requires the VA to determine within 20 days (excepting Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays) after the receipt of any such request whether to comply with such request  and immediately notify the person making such request of such determination and the reasons therefor, and of the right of such person to appeal to the head of the agency any adverse determination. Today marks the __th working day since the RO received my request for the c-file documents.

I request that the VA release the requested records immediately. In any event, please make a decision regarding this appeal within twenty (20) working days, as required by 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(6)(A)(ii). If you have any questions, you may contact me by telephone at (202) 867-5309.


(be sure to sign here)

Joseph Average Veteran

Enc:   Copy of Letter to  (your) RO, dated (month day, year)

Copy of Certified Mail Return Receipt

 §§ 5701(b)(1) and 5702; 38 C.F.R. §§ 1.525, 1.526, and 1.577 (2011), and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. § 552.

You have now prepositioned yourself for a Writ of Mandamus at the CAVC if the VA remains recalcitrant and ignores you. We have had this happen as I mentioned to Leigh Ann, one of our very own members. I suggested she bypass any more of the standard letters above because, after two years, it’s more than obvious they’re plumb funning her. Leigh Ann followed my advice and they contacted a very able attorney who did just that. I enclose some of her (and VA’s) correspondence as well as a scathing denouncement of VA’s actions following the filing of the request for the Writ.

On July 13, 2013, petitioner Leigh Ann filed through counsel a petition for extraordinary relief in the nature of a writ of mandamus seeking to have VA provide to her attorney both a photocopy of her claims file and contact information for the VA employee responsible for supervising the photocopying process. She also requests attorney’s fees. Ms. Leigh Ann argues that she requested a copy of her claims file on April 25, 2012, and that the Baltimore regional office (RO) sent her a June 20, 2012, letter acknowledging her request and explaining that she would receive a prompt response. Despite the RO’s letter, she argues that she has not received a copy of her claims file. She also alleges that, between July 30, 2012, and June 17, 2013, she has sent requests for her claims file to the Baltimore and Detroit RO, VA Office of General Counsel, and Office of Government Services. Petitioner’s Brief Ex. A-M. She states that these letters, and various telephone calls to the Detroit RO, have been unanswered. Before proceeding to adjudicate the merits of the petition, the Court requests a response from the Secretary that addresses the allegations in the petition and provides supporting documentation. On consideration of the foregoing, it isORDERED that the Secretary, within 30 days from the date of this order, file an answer to the petition addressing its specific allegations and providing any documentation necessary to aid the

Court’s resolution of this matter.DATED: August 21, 2013

This is napalm to the VA. Their good name has now been besmirched by Leigh Ann even if she and the attorney refrained from using the pejorative “raised by wolves”. VA officials in DC tend to drop everything they are doing, come back from their three-martini lunches and roll up their sleeves. AT&T’s fiber optics heat up as they get to bottom of it. Some lazy daughter of a gun up in the Detroit RO has to apologize and fall on her sword. She is forced to pick up the phone and actually call Leigh Ann to ask her where to mail the c-file. No explanation for the horrendous delay. No apology. Nothing. Just a rude  “Where d’ya want this sucker, babe?” Leigh suggested that, under the circumstances, it might be appropriate to send it to the gentleman who requested it- that being her attorney of record. And then we have Gen. Shinseki’s response about the product shipped from Detroit. Apparently Leigh Ann and her attorney were not very helpful. Mr. Snyder failed to return the VA employee’s phone call. Shocked. I am shocked. What boorish behaviour on her attorney’s part.

The Secretary advises the Court that personnel from the Detroit RO, Ms. Littles, contacted Petitioner by telephone on August 22, 2013, requesting an alternative address to her Post Office (P.O.) Box number because the United Parcel Service (UPS) could not deliver a package (containing the copy of the claims file) to a P.O. Box. See Exhibit. Petitioner informed Ms. Littles that the copy should be sent to her attorney, Mr. Snyder. Id. Ms. Littles then called Mr. Snyder and left a voicemail message for him requesting that he contact her concerning the delivery of the claims file copy. Id. Mr. Snyder did not respond to the voicemail message.ld. UPS tracking information reflects that the package containing the copy of the claims file was delivered to Mr. Snyder on August 27,
2013, at an address in Rockville, Maryland, and that Mr. Snyder signed at the time of delivery.


With regard to a delay in providing a copy of the claims file, the undersigned was informed by personnel at the Baltimore RO that the causes for such a delay included a high level of inventory, high volume of mail, and workload prioritization at the Baltimore RO. Personnel at the Detroit RO informed the undersigned that the claims file was forwarded to the Detroit RO as part of a special initiative to assist the Baltimore RO with claims processing and completion.

So if we understand this, the concerned raters at the Baltimore VARO, which is inundated in work, shipped it off to Detroit’s VARO which is in deeper claims shit that Baltimore. And:

The undersigned was further informed that following the issuance of the June 2013 rating decision the claims file was mistakenly forwarded to the scanning vendor on June 10, 2013. Pursuant to the special initiative, all claims files from the Baltimore RO were forwarded to the vendor for scanning after completion of the claims process. However, the undersigned was informed that Petitioner’s claims file should not have been sent to the scanning vendor in light of Petitioner’s request for a copy of her claims file. Personnel at the Detroit RO, as well as the Secretary, apologize for mistakenly forwarding the claims file to the vendor and further delaying Petitioner obtaining a copy of her claims file.

And the best of all:

The Secretary submits that where a claimant achieves the result desired in a petition because of a voluntary change in the Secretary’s conduct, rather than through a confession of error or a finding of error by this Court, the claimant is not a prevailing party for EAJA purposes.

images (1)So, from reading this, Ms. Littles, the tired, overworked, overbonused Detroit VA employee who drew the short straw, had to actually call a Veteran and ask her where to mail the c-file because she couldn’t be bothered to look up the correct address herself (in the c-file she was holding). I can almost hear that Steve Martin- ” Well. Excuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuse me! You mean you want me to look up the address? Are you mad?”

Last but not least, we have the petitioner’s response to this insanity. Lawyers are great for taking the phrase “Raised by wolves” and ameliorating it such that it doesn’t grate on the ears quite so rudely. It’s also an opportunity to inject some irony into the conversation and make yourself appear to just be a bumbling law dog striving to comply with the ever changing VA rules. I pluck from the response the low-hanging fruit:

Further, from the Respondent’s September 19th response,
it is not clear whether the papers sent to the undersigned
were copied from the original claims file or from a “scanned” file prepared by an unknown vendor on an unknown date. It is not known where the original claims file is held although the undersigned did receive a telephone call from a Baltimore VA Regional Office employee who implied he had the original file. Telephone calls to that employee by the undersigned to address these issues went unanswered and unreturned.

And of special interest to all of you when you request a complete, certified, unredacted copy of the original c-file:

What is known is that copies of portions of the claims file previously sent directly to the veteran are not contained in the copy sent by the Detroit VARO. For example, the veteran initiated several Congressional inquiries for which she received some replies but these replies and memos from various VA personnel regarding her requests are not part of the records sent the undersigned. This suggests that VA withholds certain items in the original claims file prior to scanning or selects only certain records to be scanned.

Whoa. Say it ain’t so. Selective copying of a c-file (certified) to include redacting certain items? And that niggling little problem of another Vet’s records polluting your own?

Finally, the copy sent to the undersigned contains a record from another veteran. Who is the point of contact to request that this record be removed from the Petitioner’s original and scanned file and associated with the correct file?

This laissez faire approach to copying claims files may be endemic to the system and we simply are unaware of it. As I have pointed out more than once, VA is the keeper of this file if you neglect to. Therefore, the file contains whatever VA says it does. It is also presumed to be correct due to the Presumption of Regularity. Who are we to say differently? Or, in VA’s favorite parlance-“Prove it.” If you rebut the evidence and prove the c-file is contaminated or missing certain documents, the Presumption of Regularity is overturned and the whole file is open to re-inspection with all evidence being possibly tainted or corrupted. A very important concept to know.

And here’s an important update to consider too:

And lastly, I add on March 12th, 2018:

Of course, if the  VA attorney you hire has access to the VA’s Veterans Benefits Management System (VBMS), via remote computer, they can view your records in real time rather than wait the six months you currently suffer before they are copied and mailed to you. I finally switched over to this as it’s the cat’s pajamas. You wonder how you ever managed with green firewood, wet blankets and smoke signals from mountaintops in the past thirty years. We’ve come a long way, baby.

About asknod

VA claims blogger
This entry was posted in Extraordinary Writs of Mandamus, Obtaining a C-file, Presumption of Regularity and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to GETTING YOUR C-FILE

  1. Pingback: Records, Veterans, Dept of Veterans Affairs, VA claims - For Veterans Who've Had it With The VA

  2. Bonnie Wade says:

    I would like to obtain my father’s full C-file and anything else it contains. He passed away in 1991. Would I still send them the same information as above?

  3. Rebecca says:

    My case had been at the Appeals Management Center in D.C. for several years, with a lot of back and forth. Eventually, I received what can only be called a nasty-gram finalization of my case from an Appeals judge, whose name I did not recognize. This dude even denied claims I never made.

    I immediately sent a letter of protest, receiving an actual signed and dated receipt, one can actually read, that acknowledged receipt of my letter.

    I have been
    waiting six years for a response to that letter, as well as to the very detailed letter I’d sent the Appeals Management Center, just before it, disputing their findings, chapter and verse.

    In response to a request for help from the previous FLOTUS, I received a letter from the Baltimore Regional Office informing me my case had been closed six years ago, without addressing my last letter of dispute.

    I had previously contacted an attorneys’ office for help. They waited a year for my records to be sent. A couple of weeks later, I received a cryptic message on my cell, from a paralegal, telling me they would not take my case because I had not disputed a VA finding from back in 2001. That made absolutely no sense because I hadn’t even had my intake physical until 2002.

    They would not take my calls; they would not return my calls. I have no idea what happened with my records. I asked for them, even offering to pick them up at one of their offices. Still no response.

    I contacted another firm; this one run by former VA attorneys that are located in Maryland. That did me no good. I’m supposed to get back to them when my case is denied. I don’t know how much more of a denial I can receive. The woman I spoke to told me to contact a VSO.

    The DAV wants me to file a form “Notice of Intent to File a Claim,” or some such thing. I’m not interested in filing a new claim. I want the VA to finish my claim that began in 2001. That’s 16 years worth of compensation! Why would I want to back off from that?

    It took me 9 years to get to 60%. (The VA completely disregarded my 4 dependent children.) Then I got shut down. From reading back through VA SSOC letters, I find things I never said, that they did not perform tests the Appeals judge told them to do; findings by an appeals judge that told me the VA denied one of my claims, even though their examining doctor had found evidence of my having the problem. The Appeals judge did not mention the denial, just that it had been found. I also received VA diagnoses that I never claimed, but they used to avoid payment back to 2001. They even went so far as to not send me an SSOC –I think so I wouldn’t be able to dispute it. I found out about its existence via a letter from another VA office that prompted me to call the 800 number to ask what the letter was talking about. It took several tries and weeks to obtain a copy of that letter. Finally, a woman in the Phoenix location took pity on me and sent a copy of the letter. I spent a lot of time, in a very short period of time, addressing that SSOC, handcarrying it into the Appeals Management Office on the 30th day. It was 58 pages long and even had a bibliography. I cited their claims, and disputed them. I asked them to clarify their findings, how they could state what they did when they were going against science, as well as their own 38 CFR. I never received a response to it, nor to my next, final letter. I have proof they received the letters.

    I also believe the VA took advantage of the fact I did not have a VSO, so I did not know what all I should do. They certainly did not tell me, although their directive says they are supposed to aid the vet in developing his/her claim.

    The past 16 years have been hellish, and I never would have had to experience some of the negative things I went through, if the VA employees had done their jobs properly and in a timely manner. I’ve always thought, ever since it happened to me, that an attorney might enjoy going after the VA on that incident alone. You’re welcome to use my story about having been raped while working a very-part time job I had taken to try and bring in at least some money while waiting on the VA. It happened to me, several times, in 2007, 6 years after I had filed. Yes, the rapes were specific to that job. They were committed by a deputy who had been contracted by the college I was working for. He was there to provide security.

    Any suggestions as to what to do, who to contact who would actually help me instead of casting me aside as has been done by others? I’d considered a letter to the VA IG spelling out chapter and verse. My Representative’s office is rather out of the question. A woman from my small neighborhood works for him. I prefer her not knowing my personal health problems.

    Incidentally, regarding your comments about the VA not providing copies of everything they have on a vet: 38 CFR contains a section that says they can hold back anything they want to. Off the top of my head, I believe it was in Section 1.

    Thank-you, in advance, for any help or advice you can give me.

    • asknod says:

      My advice would be to contact my Congressman and ask him or her for the VA Secretary’s personal email as we had under the last Secretary (McDonald). Many things were solved with that little shortcut to justice.

  4. Charles Johnson says:

    Are you as leary of the Appeals Modernization Act as I am . Doe’s it eliminate our present one year time frame to submit New Evidence? Do You believe it is an attempt for VA to decrease the Appeals backlog by eliminating Veterans rights during the Appeals process ? Thus eliminating Appeals .

  5. Reed says:

    I’m searching for lost military records. I’ve exhausted all resources and the only place left that I know this paperwork exist is in my c-file. I’m concerned about requesting my file to obtain this one missing document. I don’t want to go poking the bear when my claim was favorable and closed years ago. But, I would really like a copy of this order to pass on to my children some day. Any comments or suggestions? I’ve already searched the ebenefits archives with no luck : /

    • asknod says:

      File a request for a copy of your c- files \. There’s no problem with upsetting VA. I show Vets how do it all the time. They belong to you. VA is merely the steward of them if they can manage not to destroy them. Check out my blogs on here telling you how to get it. Use the new 21-3288 form.

  6. Sherry says:

    Hi Folks, I was wondering if anyone has heard from Alex? I am a little worried for him as usually he returns my email fairly promptly and it’s been several days. I will keep him in my prayers.

  7. Rich Cheatham says:

    I believe if a bill were to be passed saying that prior to the VA deciding your disability claim case, they should be required by law, to expedite the transfer a complete copy of the veterans c-file to them. In normal court cases it is required that lawyers provide copies of files that will be used against people to the lawyers representing them.

    • asknod says:

      You are correct. It would seem that if you’re going to “predeny” the Veteran, he should be given the same tool to work with at the outset. Look how long it took to get the VCAA disclosure (2001).

      • Rich Cheatham says:

        In civilian lawsuits lawyers are required to provide files containing evidence and witness lists showing how they intend to present their case. How can the VA not be required to provide how they present and decide the case prior to deciding a case? If I am not mistaken, the case is developed within the regional office and decided there.
        In my case they used a biased C&P exam, my letters, my statements and no telling what else. They did a hearing test on me at the VA hospital. I could not hear the person conducting the test. Her opinion states that I have 96% hearing ability. The test was conducted in what I would consider a rush. I don’t believe she calibrated the audiometer prior to the test. There was not time. I was not provided any information about the equipment used or calibration data. I believe that any medical equipment used to perform any test or function by any medical facility the calibration or required maintenance certification date must be verified prior to use and that data must be included with the test results. That way there will be no doubt about the accuracy of the test results or performance of the equipment being used.

  8. Sherry says:

    I am married to my Vietnam Navy Corpsman (Rick) for nearly 30 years. We are both confused as to what the C-file contains. Rick requested his C-file from his VSO and was told he had never heard of a C-file. Rick’s situation is his VSO filed a claim for him in regards to his severe COPD and hearing loss. He just received is notification of the claim and was granted 10% for his hearing loss but nothing on COPD. Rick had asked his VSO to hold off submitting the claim as he was undergoing many additional physical tests and he was waiting for additional medical records to back up his claim. The VSO is retiring and felt he needed to submit the claim and did so without consulting with Rick first. Now, the VSO says Rick needs to file another claim for any additional ailments. Long story short, back in 2001 Rick’s PTSD had boiled out and was stopped via the police from him doing harm to himself. Rick was hospitalized and connected with a Psychologist and referred him to his local VSO so that he could connect with the VA as he diagnosed him with “Delayed Onset PTSD”. Rick and went in to see the VSO and Rick was told his VA records were destroyed in a fire and basically no record of him being in Service. The VSO did however set an appointment with a VA doctor for which I drove him to. That Doctor told him at that one time appointment that the story he had shared with his Psychologist concerning two helicopters crashing was not on record therefore there was nothing they could do to help him. Well, my husband was very upset when leaving this appointment to say the least. No records of his Service to his Country and now this Doc basically calling him a liar. Rick continued for many years seeing his Psychologist which turned out to be a real blessing for him. He was placed on medication for which his Doctor has said he will need to stay on the rest of his life. His sessions and the Meds is what really saved his life. Rick has requested records from his current VSO in regards to his contact with the VSO back in 2001 and he says there are no records. Shouldn’t there be something? How does one obtain records regarding that VA Doctor appointment from 2001? Would the C-File contain that info? Thank you for listening and any support you may supply.

  9. asknod says:

    For those of you who call the number I used on the sample letter above, the 202 area code is the VA’s in DC. The 867-5309 is from a song by Tommy Two Tones. And no, it will not ring at my house.

  10. John King says:

    I gave my lawyer a copy of my C-File since he had a hard time getting one. When we got to BVA we saw the judges copy of my file which was three times as large as mine. My lawyer first words were ” May I get a copy of what you have Judge?”. He got the complete copy in a few weeks, but imagine our feelings when we are at a hearing, and see that the VA side has hundreds of pages of records we don’t have, and we are supposed to get a fair hearing. In a real legal action this would be a major error and misconduct to hide facts from one side or the other. We arranged our case with only 1/3 of my c-file.

  11. Randy says:

    I found an attorney which was going to do some of my filing when I became more ill and he requested it from the RO stating, “client wishes certified copies of all paperwork contained in his C-file to include front, center and rear of folder”. Received them two weeks later but did not retain law dog due to the VA going CUE on the items at the time. But he is available and seems to have his poop in a group so to speak.

  12. Bruce says:

    My VSO told not to request the c-file because I should have everything in my own personal file. I cant help but think of an song that sums up my experience so far with the VA…”In the year 2525..”

    • asknod says:

      Or a movie trailer… “C-files? We don’t got to give you no stinkin’ c-files.” Seems we need to do an Indie movie on the plight of Vets. I don’t think America grasps the concept of VA’s Catch 22 form of justice. They have a splendid Statute (38 USC) which is then riddled with “except when the Vet is…” in 38 CFR and then completely demolished when the VA’s M21-1MR manual dictates ” The Vet wins only if he can prove he was born on a Tuesday before noon-in the spring-in the Northeast- to documented citizens here legally-who were legally married at the time-who were not felons- who voted regularly- and s/he has no willful misconduct allegations in their UCMJ jacket-” I could go on.

    • Randy says:

      Liars, liars, liars! You need to demand that information and have it safely under your control. There is information, sometimes another Vets personal info, contained within the confines of that file. See if you can find a pro bono attorney with a background in Vet law to demand it for you if you have to go that far. VSO stands for violated social outcast for a reason.

  13. david j murphy says:

    Great info. Thank you

  14. Kiedove says:

    Can’t you request an appointment to view the C-file at the RO? If so, do any readers have experience going this route?

    • asknod says:

      Yes, you can. It takes time to set it up. Usually VSOs come and go and can take it across the hall to their desks with no supervision. You, of course, are not to be trusted. Any viewing is accomplished under a watchful eye.

  15. karen stern says:

    Fascinating info. My husband and I were both Feds, and we cannot IMAGINE doing business like this. BUT, then again, we DID NOT work for the VA.

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