I’m sorry I’ve been remiss. I have been a slave to the typewriter attempting to cure the misguided proclivities of VA raters across our rapidly fruiting plains this spring. It seems there is something in the water or left-handed tobacco has been legalized and they aren’t being dope-tested. Jez, where do I start today? Ahh, of course. All of you folk must be into that new business gig LinkedUp®, right? About six times a day, I get an update to “Congratulate Bob on his reaching 90 days sober at Astin Mechanical.” My new influizers (sp?) are Honey BooBoo and Michael Avenatti. I was searched for 5 times last week by huge corporations who might want to buy me? Cupcake signed me up on LinkedUp™ so I have no idea what she said about me. Look me up. I’m in the icloud somewhere. I have accountants who pay for it all.
Pickles has now doubled in weight to 11 lbs this AM. Puppy breath is still there.
I got my ass whipped by a couple of losses I didn’t see coming but this is what we have to endure at the regional level. Always remember this is an insurance company. The VA’s fisc is a clear responsibility they look at like the Huns (Veterans with alleged disabilities) at the Gate. I draw the line when they start coming up with the following sleight of hand. Imagine you’re rated for two separate things-in the instant case here- TBI and PTSD. They’re two separate “disorders”- DC 8045 @70% and DC 9411@50%. They might share one or two overlapping symptoms but they generally have two entirely separate sets of “conditions”. Remember those descriptive nouns for mental “issues”.
Now grant some other increases to a banged up body like 50% for headaches and 10% for tinnitus for TBI they somehow overlooked for 50 years and…oh-oh…jez, he’ll be entitled to SMC S. Can’t have that. Quick, conflate two ‘disorders’ into one and disappear the PTSD into thin air. Yes, ladies and gentlemen. A rater pulled off this amazing trick of prestidigitation and then had the balls to say the VA, in its munificence, wouldn’t be filing to recoup the overpayment to the Veteran for the last 4 years.
Actually, the language in DC 8045 says rate the TBI shit under TBI and rate the bent brain shit under PTSD. That’s to avoid pyramiding. And here, the rater gets points for trying to bullshit a bullshitter. He gets plumb amusing for attempting to”reintegrate” two disorders into one. Reintegrate?
Well, hush my mouth. I thought it was a sub silentio reduction in rating. I went on a writing jag and cranked out the most excellent rebuttal to an SSOC in all my years. Most times I wouldn’t get all in a tizzy and just take it to the BVA. Welcome to the new AMA folks. That’s what we’re doing now. This was written, not for the 70 IQ GS 13 Booth Bitch in Jackson, Miss but for the edification of a learned Veterans Law Judge and his staff counsel.
Now, if that wasn’t the biggest error they hoped no one would ever unravel, how about the same story in a different town a month earlier. This time, the Vet has a mess of 10s, 20s, and 30%ers along with a total loss of rt hand. The army operated on it to fix a finger. Five surgeries later, the hand was a feeder claw like on a lobster. The army sent him packing with 60% for the hand instead of 70%. Uh-oh. 1993 CUE. Well, they ignored the CUE and took away a 26 year rating of 10% and a 9-year rating of 10% (20% total) saying it was, well, nonsymptomatic dude and we can’t pay you if the boo boo got all better, now can we? And besides, we gave you 30% for your hip right before we took the 20% away. Since we really didn’t reduce your rating by 86ing the antique rating, you’re still at 80% instead of 90%. And oh, by the way, that TDIU? Nope. We tried but we couldn’t swing it with you only being 80% rated and all.
If you go down into the Go To Work section in the VBMS, you see the deferrals flying back and forth.
Rater #1: Increasing hip to 30% with increase in Left ankle results in 95% combined rating. Refer back to coach.
Coach: Add scars up. Do they equal 6″²? o%. Also. we have a problem. Veteran’s agent has access to VBMS and can see we’re fixing to screw him on a protected rating. You have my authority to promulgate. Screw the agent.
So here we go. The VA rater blithely takes 26-yr. old antique painful scar rating(s) and conflates all the scars into square footage. Uh-oh. You need six square inches to get to 10%. Way missed it by thaaaaaat much.
As for that pesky CUE, he’s right All the PULHES scores at entry were 1 across the board. The exit has a 5 on it for upper. Screw it. Call him left handed now and confirm the rating of the non-dominant (formerly right handed) hand at 60%. Next?
I can’t make this shit up. This is what happens when you have to crank out 10 decisions a day or get demoted. Or, God forbid, screwed out of your
bonus Performance Pay Incentive Allowance.
Here’s my answer to dufus in Houston who has no idea how to spell 38 CFR:
Remember, if you are the CUE guy, you are a “movant. Otherwise you’re a claimant or an appellant. When you file an Ex Writ at the Court, you are a petitioner.
P.S. Here’s a little something you and your buds could cook up this weekend.