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Wildlife

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I had to go on the search for it cause I recalled that I already posted this information along with a couple of photos that I had handy at the time in a different thread when previously asked, shortly after I jumped back onto 'TOO' again in 2018.

Anyhow, in case you might have missed it, here it is once again. Just click the thread link - Alaska bound
 

"J"

Bass Whisperer
Supporting Member
48,295
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North Carolina
2427E38A-549D-4C32-8FCA-E710825744C9.jpeg
 

Stressless

Active Member
1,283
60
Keene, OH
@Sgt Fury // ALCON - this is a follow on to the Veterans Administration hearing aid discussion on another thread. SITREP does a good job across many subjects, as I said I'm getting ready to order a new pair thru the VA and found this discussion to be on point.

 
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Sgt Fury

Sgt. Spellchecker
Just made an appointment for the 17th. I told the lady on the phone that I didn’t lose my hearing while in the service, it is an accumulation over the course of my life..and that it is a loud ringing in my ears. She then said “yes, being around artillery will do that to you”. The only time I was around artillery was when we raised the flag in the morning, and I was only on that duty about once a week. I have no idea what to expect or even if I’m entitled to get them but I guess I’ll find out.
 
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Stressless

Active Member
1,283
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Keene, OH
Just made an appointment for the 17th. I told the lady on the phone that I didn’t lose my hearing while in the service, it is an accumulation over the course of my life..and that it is a loud ringing in my ears. She then said “yes, being around artillery will do that to you”. The only time I was around artillery was when we raised the flag in the morning, and I was only on that duty about once a week. I have no idea what to expect or even if I’m entitled to get them but I guess I’ll find out.
Send a PM with your # George if you want to chat via phone - I've helped some other vets thru the VA processes. But the short version is if the appointment is a C&P exam then you need to be ready and prepared for it.

Service Connected Tinnitus: The Vet must show three things to BE RATED and Service Connected. Once that is established your hearing aids are provided for life. Pick a word for that noise you hear, Tea-Kettle, Ringing etc and use that word only to describe the noise you hear.

Every service-connected condition a veteran has is assigned a rating by the VA during the VA Disability Process your C&P exam is the test for this condition.

The three things that must be present for you to get a tinnitus service connected rating:

1) The noise must be heard bi-laterally. (in both ears)
2) The noise must be heard consonantly in both ears. if it goes away for a couple weeks comes back tell them that, but you won't be rated for it.
3) Their must be a 'nexus' or cause that occurred while in service that casued that noise in your ears. Arty round, jet engine, prop blast, unmuffled gensets, etc etc...

Proving VA Tinnitus Claims.

Okay, here’s the practical skills portion of the post – because, after all, the law is useless unless we can use it, right?

Here’s how to prove nexus in your VA Tinnitus claim.

Draft a Sworn Declaration (see below)– do not use VA Form 21-4138 – with the following information:
  1. List each and every incident of significant noise exposure you can remember – and give enough detail to show that the exposure was significant and credible Grenade blasts, artillery rounds, simulators, constant machine-gun fire, years around loud jet or tank engines, you get the idea. Don’t OVERDO it…1-3 sentences should suffice, but identify if you can the approximate month and year of the noise exposure.
  2. State approximately when you remember the tinnitus starting.
  3. If it started in service, explain why you didn’t seek medical treatment in service (for most Veterans, explaining the reality of military service to bureaucrats will suffice: no soldier, sailor, or airmen is going to stop a mission or training to seek treatment for a condition that everybody has and that there is no cure for. True Story).
  4. Identify the chronicity of your tinnitus – has it been continuous since exposure to the noise? If yes, explain that you have had this ringing since the exposure to noise.
  5. Identify the frequency of your tinnitus – how often do you have ringing in the ears? Every day? Twice a week? 4 times a month?
  6. Identify the severity of your tinnitus. I think you need only do this if your tinnitus is so severe that it is debilitating, prevents you from working, or in ery rare cases, is “objective tinnitus”, meaning it can be heard by other people standing next to you. In these cases, you might be able to seek an extra-schedular rating for the tinnitus in excess of the 10% limit in the Schedule of Impairment Ratings.
In whatever format you submit this information to the VARO through the VA Evidence Intake Center remember: VARO Raters and BVA VLJs are not always up to date on the law –

So…..be sure to point out the Fountain case and the holding for which it stands:

The Holding of the Fountain Case.​


Tinnitus is an organic disease of the nervous system, and you can prove the element of nexus by showing chronicity and continuity of symptomatology from discharge through diagnosis.

“Tinnitus is a chronic and organic disease of the nervous system, and the Veteran may establish nexus with lay evidence with proof of continuity of symptomatology”.

There it is, folks – 7 steps to proving VA tinnitus claims.


Lay evidence is the Sworn Declaration below: Best to copy and paste into Word and format it to look and read 'nice' as well as to remove ALL the elements that make it look like a form letter, i.e., directions.


SWORN DECLARATION OF INSERT NAME


STATE OF ____________________ §

COUNTY OF__________________ §

Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1746, I, INSERT NAME, declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct:

My name is INSERT NAME. I am more than eighteen years of age, of sound mind, and fully competent to make this affidavit. I have personal knowledge of the matters set forth below.

List each and every incident of significant noise exposure you can remember - and give enough detail to show that the exposure was significant and credible Grenade blasts, artillery rounds, simulators, constant machine-gun fire, years around loud jet or tank engines, you get the idea. Don't OVERDO it...1-3 sentences should suffice, but identify if you can the approximate month and year of the noise exposure.

State approximately when you remember the tinnitus starting.

If it started in service, explain why you didn't seek medical treatment in service (for most veterans, explaining the reality of military service to bureaucrats will suffice: no soldier, sailor, or airmen is going to stop a mission or training to seek treatment for a condition that everybody has and that there is no cure for. True Story).

Identify the chronicity of your tinnitus - has it been continuous since exposure to the noise? If yes, explain that you have had this ringing since the exposure to noise.

Identify the frequency of your tinnitus - how often do you have ringing in the ears? Every day? Twice a week? 4 times a month?

Identify the severity of your tinnitus. Don’t overdo it – tinnitus caps out at a 10% rating just for having it in both ears. Just mention, if true, whether your tinnitus is so severe that it is debilitating, prevents you from working, or in very rare cases, is "objective tinnitus", meaning it can be heard by other people standing next to you.

Proofread the final copy of the sworn declaration – make sure you’ve cleaned out all references that show this was a form.


Executed on INSERT DATE

Signed:


____________________________________

INSERT NAME



"The harder you work the luckier you get" Dad
===========================
Best of Luck,
Stressless
 
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Hedgelj

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
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Mohicanish
So i don't have any current issues but who knows what the future entails. I am part of the burn pit registry based upon my time in AFG.

Just a lowly former reservist with 9 years so where would i potentially fall in this or once again red haired step child of the .mil?
 
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"J"

Bass Whisperer
Supporting Member
48,295
249
North Carolina
So i don't have any current issues but who knows what the future entails. I am part of the burn pit registry based upon my time in AFG.

Just a lowly former reservist with 9 years so where would i potentially fall in this or once again red haired step child of the .mil?
Register regardless. Especially if you’re not in the system already.
 

Sgt Fury

Sgt. Spellchecker
Went to the VA today…I was told I need to register for medical (going to do it online). In the meantime, the lady who helped me (also a vet) filed not one but two claims…first one was for my hearing loss/ringing in my ears…second was for a broken clavicle I suffered while stationed at Ft. Myer. The doctor (full bird colonel) never set it and after several hours in the waiting room, he prescribed pain killers and released me. When I told him the clavicle was not set right and I could feel that it wasn’t in its right place, he started yelling at me and stated that he didn’t need a private to tell him how to do his job. Weeks later when I went back for my follow up, a young doctor was shocked and stated that no one had set the bone. After telling him what happened, he said that the colonel had retired and that he was a terrible doctor. They then said they couldn’t fix it without surgery and that I’d have to reenlist. My ETS date was only months away. When I declined, they said there was nothing they could do. The lady who filed the claim said that they should never have told me that I had to reenlist and that they in fact could’ve fixed it after I was discharged…they would’ve had to put me on disability and still pay me while I recovered. It causes me pain daily and I cannot lay on that side for more than five minutes before the discomfort makes me change position. She told me that I may get some kind of disability payment every month if it is approved. Don’t know what the amount would be but it was something I never even considered. I figured I would just have to live with the pain (which is still what’s in store for me) but never even considered filing for the lack of proper medical care when I was serving. I just hope I can get hearing aids that’ll stop this continuous ringing in my ears. This is something that I should’ve done LONG ago, but was too busy between work and life in general.
 

Stressless

Active Member
1,283
60
Keene, OH
Sounds like you got a Good C&P doc George. Tinnitus rates can be at 0% i.e. service connected, or 10% disability, no higher, but either rating includes state of the art hearing aids. No idea on what might be claimed on the other injury. One thing I've seen just this month via the VA is they are revising the VARD specifically for Evaluating tinnitus (ringing in the ears) as a symptom of the underlying disease which causes it, rather than as a stand-alone disability. Sometimes when a claim's submitted when a specific condition this is being changed it gets slowed down (Welcome to the VA!)

https://www.militarytimes.com/veter...for-tinnitus-mental-health-issues-may-change/