Looking for advice with appeal

haewood

Member
Registered Member
I've been in the Air Force for 10 years as of next month and I received my ratings today; 10% DoD, 90% VA. I previously went through a full med board and was returned to duty about 4 years ago. Considering what's going on with me health wise, I'm surprised that they're only offering 10% for DoD. I'm not looking to milk the system however I know that 30% is the magic number for permanent medical retirement.

The DoD only gave me a rating for Thoracolumar Chronic Pain. I also have Obstructive Sleep Apnea however a rating wasn't applied for that. I also have major depression however it's not what I was referred to a med board for. The VA gave me 70% for Major Depression, I'm surprised that it wasn't taken into consideration at all. I'm also taking Provigil for excessive daytime sleepiness. Considering all of the meds I'm taking for back pain, depression, and sleep problems I'm surprised by the 10% rating. My career field deals with IT and occasionally carrying heavy equipment. My medical profile states I cannot lift over 10 lbs.

As of now I am planning on disputing this and going down to Texas. Does anyone have any advice in disputing this? I'm going to contact the USAF Office of Airmen's Counsel tomorrow for guidance however I wanted to read over all of my med board docs before hand. Does anyone think that I shouldn't try to fight this? Should I consider getting a lawyer to represent me? Thanks, hope everyone has a great day.
 

denmom117

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
Appeal.

I appealed to the formal board to have 2 other conditions moved up to be listed as referred conditions. I had to explain and answer questions as to how these 2 conditions affected my AFSC and me on a daily basis. In the end they agreed to move 1 of the 2 up to a referred condition. I used an attorney from the Office of Airmen's Counsel and am happy with that choice. My lawyer prepared my appeal to the SAFPC (after the formal board) and prepared my VARR paperwork too.
 

Ed Mercanti

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
They only refer conditions which prevent you from doing your duties. You said you were medically boarded 4 years ago. If you were found fit for certain conditions, they won't rate them unless you can show that they worsened to the point where they prevented you from doing your job.
 

Camp P Marine

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
Appeal.

I appealed to the formal board to have 2 other conditions moved up to be listed as referred conditions. I had to explain and answer questions as to how these 2 conditions affected my AFSC and me on a daily basis. In the end they agreed to move 1 of the 2 up to a referred condition. I used an attorney from the Office of Airmen's Counsel and am happy with that choice. My lawyer prepared my appeal to the SAFPC (after the formal board) and prepared my VARR paperwork too.
I'm assuming your case is still pending?

Do you remain on active duty until it is final at this stage as well?

@haewood You have nothing to lose by appealing and fighting for med retirement. If you accept, it will be so much harder to fight it in the future. Now is the time to get the outcome you desire. Use the legal resources available on base at a minimum.
 
Last edited:

FloridaInjuredInCombat

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
Don't know if you can add it on appeal or even if it applies to you, but in my case, my lumbar spine was rated at 10% and I had (on appeal to the MEB) also been rated for lumbar radiculopathy (pain and numbness) for EACH leg. That put me over the 30% I needed for medical retirement.

At the PEB stage, a DBQ that more accurately showed my back condition was enough to double what the PEB original findings were, if you haven't done so already, I would highly recommend you get a DBQ covering your injuries, done by your OWN physician. The DBQ (Disability Benefits questionnaire) is downloadable from the VA website, and it mirrors the C&P exam. The good news, if the C&P and DBQ are in disagreement, the VA is supposed to use whichever finding MOST BENEFITS the Veteran.

Hope this helps...
 

denmom117

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
I'm assuming your case is still pending?

Do you remain on active duty until it is final at this stage as well?

@haewood You have nothing to lose by appealing and fighting for med retirement. If you accept, it will be so much harder to fight it in the future. Now is the time to get the outcome you desire. Use the legal resources available on base at a minimum.
@Camp P Marine . Yes my case is still pending with no sign of closing any time soon. Next week I reach the 2 year mark since I started in the IDES. I am still active duty and will be until this concludes. Hopefully I will be allowed to retire. As of today I have 124 days until I reach 20 years of active service.
 

Camp P Marine

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
@Camp P Marine . Yes my case is still pending with no sign of closing any time soon. Next week I reach the 2 year mark since I started in the IDES. I am still active duty and will be until this concludes. Hopefully I will be allowed to retire. As of today I have 124 days until I reach 20 years of active service.
@denmom117 Thank you for the answer. Best of luck with reaching 20 years. It's insane you give 19 years of your life and the DOD can just tell you goodbye no Tricare or pension.
 

CWOUSMC

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
@denmom117 not sure about all branches of service but in the USMC when a member is found Unfit for active duty by the PEB, they may request that their disability determination be deferred so they can continue to serve, with an appropriate assignment limitation, in a permanent limited duty status to complete twenty years of service. As a matter of fact they actually encourage members to request it if they are over 18 years for that purpose.
 

denmom117

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
@denmom117 not sure about all branches of service but in the USMC when a member is found Unfit for active duty by the PEB, they may request that their disability determination be deferred so they can continue to serve, with an appropriate assignment limitation, in a permanent limited duty status to complete twenty years of service. As a matter of fact they actually encourage members to request it if they are over 18 years for that purpose.
AF has it too, it's called Limited Assignment Status. I can't apply for it until I receive the results of my VARR. Once I receive the results I plan on applying.
 

denmom117

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
demmom117,

What was your VARR for?
My referred condition, heart related (code 7011) was rated at 0% and not service connected. No clue why it wasn't service connected as when I started seeking medical care I had been in the AF for 15 years and had no problem prior to coming into the AF. So I've requested that be looked at as well as the fact that my test results in my medical records meet the 30% criteria. My C&P exam for my heart consisted of me being interviewed for about 15 minutes (maybe less) by who I assume was a cardiologist (he never said). He also admitted that he had only looked at my records (ie a few minutes before my appointment) and that he hadn't found all of my heart related documents (as of my C&P appointments I had 4 volumes of medical records).

I truly feel my C&P appointments were pencil whipped. This wasn't my only issue with my ratings, I was also given a higher percentage based on them believing I had an organ removed that I in fact still have. I've been told (repeatedly) that I have to wait until I'm out of the AF to have request the VA fix that mistake.
 
data-matched-content-ui-type="image_stacked" data-matched-content-rows-num="3" data-matched-content-columns-num="1" data-ad-format="autorelaxed">
Top