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Military Veterans with MS For members of the Military and their families to discuss MS issues.

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  #1  
Old 09-27-2010, 07:57 AM
davidlinda1020 davidlinda1020 is offline
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MS and VA disability claims

Has anyone had success getting approved bt the va for MS disability after the 7 year rule? How long did it take and where you given back pay an a monthly check?
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  #2  
Old 09-27-2010, 12:00 PM
Bob698 Bob698 is offline
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Well, yeah. Its called a non-service-connected pension.
I get one and I got back pay for the five months before it kicked in. I also got hammered for 20% of it when they found out I worked a temp job for three weeks before it kicked in (guess who told them he was going to do it to avoid going homeless? ). I appealled it and two months later it went back to normal.

The key for me is to keep it honest. I've heard of lots of guys who tried to beat the system and I was proactive about letting my VSO know where I was (financially) and what I was doing.
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  #3  
Old 09-27-2010, 12:22 PM
Bob698 Bob698 is offline
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Aw crap, I think I read your question wrong.
I have a habit of doing that and its why I lobbied for an Edit button.

Anyway, let's try it again.
There are two types of pensions, service-connected and non-service-connected. I'm guessing you didn't retire out, which is a whole 'nother kettle of fish.
While the rules that go with service-connected are a little less "binary" (you're allowed to work, the pension is usually more, etc.), a non-service-connected pension is also enough to get by (just), assuming they're also treating you with no co-pay and you're disabled enough that work is no longer an option.
In my case, my first VSO went for non-service due to the seven year rule. Looking back, it would have been tough to prove by the VA's guidelines (which are kind of a rip when dealling with getting an MS diagnosis) and I think his line of thought was to get the non-service type first and try an appeal later to bump it up to service-connected so I didn't have to live on the street.
Hope that explains it better.
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  #4  
Old 08-29-2013, 11:31 AM
craiglavallee craiglavallee is offline
 

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Thank you

Thank you for the question - I am also trying for MS disability, 5 years after leaving the service. I have had MS for 17 years now. They have been "Gathering of Evidence" for 37 days now, which they are only looking for NPRC Military files and NPRC Military Medical information. I provided them with my 1st MRI and informed them that I am on SSA Disability.

Craig
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  #5  
Old 08-29-2013, 08:55 PM
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Scooter24 Scooter24 is offline
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Not sure how you are referring to the 7 year rule so I will tell you my story
I got out in 87 after 13 yrs, was diagnosed with MS in Oct 09 by civ nuero. As I lost my health insurance I applied for VA health care and was approved, upon me starting treatment and getting copy of my med records my ty infusion nurse at VA found sx of MS dating back to 1976 which included numbness in hands and complaints of severe fatigue in hot weather, I utilized PVA and was initially approved for 40% in about 10 months and then PVA submitted another claim and just about a year later I rcvd 100% along with vehicle grant and the adaptive housing grant approval. craiglavallee I am also on SSDI, and on the second claim my records from there were also submitted, that is why I believe I got the 100 % which was 70% actual disability and the remaining 30% was for unemployability. that 30% means I am not able to make any money from a job. Hope that is what you were looking for.
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  #6  
Old 11-24-2013, 07:59 AM
Wilcoxg Wilcoxg is offline
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Angry VA and 7 year

I was active duty from 1990 to 1999, diagnosed in 2006 but didn't know to go to VA until 2012. Just happened to be reading about something else. Anyway, went through e benefits and submitted a claim, since I live and work in Belgium for the US Army, they sent my case in through the U.K. And actually went to see doctors in Gemany (Not Military). Anyway, long story short, received my 80% rating 4 months ago and a direct deposit for retroactive benefits to the time I started the process.

Good right? Well if the rumors are correct... The government in looking ways to save money, is looking out not paying for MS as a service connected disability at all.

Not good, I guess we will find out after the budget crisis continues into January and beyond.

Here's hoping they think of other places to cut

Greg
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  #7  
Old 11-24-2013, 09:26 AM
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Scooter24 Scooter24 is offline
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Wilcoxg- have you seen this written someplace that they are looking at no longer considering MS as service connected or is this another scare tactic rumor that has been started by someone. If they are looking at that then there is going to be a lot more that will have to be cut also, ALS, diabetes, etc, they would have to say unless directly from an injury or exposure that it isn't service connected period across the board.

It would also I think it would have to be grandfathered if in fact it was implemented, I for one would file a lawsuit instantly, how can they tell me yes it is service connected and then say oh sorry we are no longer covering it as such. The reason that there is a within 7 yr clause is due a congressman's son who was dx with MS 5 1/2 yrs after he discharged. He go that passed and implemented so his son could get disability, not sure if he is still a member congress but if he is I will bet it will get knocked down if he can get his cronies to help him.

This to me is the same as people saying in 2018 or what ever date they are saying now that there will be no more social security paid out, there again there would be massive lawsuits demanding the money with interest that was taken out of peoples paychecks for years and years to provide the benefits to them when retired or become disabled.

Just my personal opinion but feel this is all due to infighting between the political parties, which party can scare people the most about what otherr party might do.
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  #8  
Old 11-24-2013, 09:29 AM
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The 7-year presumptive means Multiple Sclerosis needs to be at least 10% disabling within 7 years of your discharge date. Normally, you will get paid from the date of your claim so if it takes 2 years to get approved you will get back pay for 24 months. The sooner you start your claim (informal) the sooner your claim will get a date used for claim purposes. Just ensure if you start an informal claim you submit everything within one year or your claim will become abandoned. Currently, if you file your INITIAL claim as a fully-developed claim the VA will grant you up to an additional year of back pay.

MS carries a 30% minimum disability rating, but the Congressional Budget Office has listed MS as 1 of 7 medical conditions they want to reduce benefits for. Secondary issues can increase the 30% and as the disease progresses you can request an increase in benefits. At 30% your monthly disability amount will be $395.

I submitted a claim past the 7-year presumptive period with a DBQ and Nexus letter from my Neurologist and a handful of buddy letters (statement in support of claim) and minimal military medical evidence to support my claim. I am not expecting to hear from them for several more months, but my VSO felt we made a "strong case" for service connection.

I would suggest you contact your county veteran's office to speak with a VSO or one of the non-profit organizations with VSOs (PVA, DAV, etc.) and have an honest conversation with them. Please speak to more than one VSO as some are great and some not-so-much. If you do not file your answer will automatically be "no" so I would encourage you to file.
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  #9  
Old 11-24-2013, 10:40 AM
Wilcoxg Wilcoxg is offline
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Discontinue benefits

Scooter24,

Unfortunately, yes it was written. I receive daily newsletters from military.com and it was mentioned their as part of 50 other ways the Feds are looking at saving us from sequestration. I didn't mean to scare everyone, but I also saw it on this forum as well,I will look at tell you where in another post.

I too hope if in acted, they will grandfather, but the wording in the article I read was saying "stop paying" for MS disability

Greg
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  #10  
Old 11-24-2013, 11:03 AM
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Scooter,
The Congressional Budget Office listed over 100 items where they recommend budget cuts. The CBO believes the VA can save $20 billion from 2014-2023 by restricting disability from certain diseases. The CBO suggests the VA should modify its disability compensation list to comport to disabilities civilians would be eligible for from civilian work. The diseases are: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; arteriosclerotic heart disease; hemorrhoids; uterine fibroids; multiple sclerosis; Crohnís disease and osteoarthritis.
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  #11  
Old 11-24-2013, 11:13 AM
Wilcoxg Wilcoxg is offline
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CBO

Marco,

Thanks for re submitting this, I knew I saw it on here somewhere.

Greg
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  #12  
Old 11-24-2013, 02:05 PM
KatieAgain KatieAgain is online now
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I read the same article last week and it is also in The Times.

My opinion for what it is worth...it will not happen. It would generate a class-action lawsuit...which could cost millions, not to mention the bad press. Most of us have official paperwork in our hands that states MS is Service Connected, and a total and permanent disability. Some of us are part of neurological clusters...I don't think they would want someone like me testifying to Congress or a Federal Judge. I guess I would also ask why the VA has so many MS Centers of Excellence if it is not a Service Connected Disability. That would make for some very interesting conversation.

If it does happen, it would have to be grandfathered.

Additionally, comparing MS to Uterine Fibroids and Hemorrhoids is absolutely ridiculous! It would be like comparing Ebola to the Flu. In my opinion it made the CBO seem incompetent.

The bickering between political parties is at the crux of this..we are not the only ones scared of losing benefits. Other articles have been written to scare other populations as well with their benefits.

As far as some of the other suggestions in the article...those probably are a bit more realistic, although unfair. As a retiree I have concurrent receipt. Not sure if that benefit will remain for me...but I am not going to worry too much and just wait for the fat lady to sing.

One thing I learned in the Military is patience. Wait for all this to blow over, let the dust settle and then reevaluate. It all usually works out in the end.
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  #13  
Old 11-26-2013, 12:51 PM
save-the-pillbug save-the-pillbug is offline
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Brand new to this forum and to MS! My husband was just diagnosed. He retired from the AF 6 years ago after a 26-yr career. I'm looking at submitting a disability claim for him and am wondering if there is a distinction between "discharged" and "retired" in terms of disability benefits. Thanks!
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  #14  
Old 11-26-2013, 03:40 PM
Bob698 Bob698 is offline
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Smile

Not meaning to sound like a wise guy , but why are you submitting the claim?

There are some differences between VA benefits and pensions for non-service connected, service connected, and retired Vets. Unfortunatly, I can't tell you what they are or might be. This can get complicated quickly depending on a lot of things like-

Are one or both of you working now?

Do one or both of you have health care coverage now?

Do one or both of you have a source of steady income?

Sorry I can't give you a "pat" answer. Being diagnosed with MS within seven years of discharge or retirement generally means that the MS is service connected in terms of the VA.

There are a lot more things which come into play and both of you really should sit down with a trained VA service officer. That person will know the answers and how to best deal with all the nuances in your husband's case.
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  #15  
Old 11-27-2013, 10:58 AM
save-the-pillbug save-the-pillbug is offline
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Thanks, Bob, for your reply. We'll contact a VSO and go from there!
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