Trying to determine how to stretch out the process until retirement

jhb2582

Registered Member
I have been diagnosed with PTSD and Bipolar. Currently, I am at 18 and 5 months, with an approved Fleet Reserve Request. I'm wondering if anyone could provide me with some insight on if I would have any issue getting to my 20 year mark. Secondly, can the VA rat me P&T at the end of the process if I am found unfit?
 

Warrior644

Staff Member
PEB Forum Lifetime Supporter
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
I have been diagnosed with PTSD and Bipolar. Currently, I am at 18 and 5 months, with an approved Fleet Reserve Request. I'm wondering if anyone could provide me with some insight on if I would have any issue getting to my 20 year mark. Secondly, can the VA rat me P&T at the end of the process if I am found unfit?
Welcome to the PEB Forum! :)

In my opinion with the implementation of the new DTM 18-004 "Revised Timeliness Goals for the IDES" which changed the total processing goal for 80% of the DoD IDES cases to 230 days (that's exactly 7.5 months on average for potential completion of the DoD IDES process), you will probably experience some extreme challenges with trying to obtain 20 years of Active Federal Service (AFS) time if you have already been referred and accepted into the DoD IDES MEB/PEB process at 18 years and 5 months of military active duty service.

In retrospect while on military active duty, my DoD IDES experiences resulted in a total duration of 618 calendar days (or 20.3 months) under the previously published DoD IDES timelines. The original DoD Manual 1332.18, Volume 2, dated August 5, 2014 stated an overall IDES processing as "The goal is for DoD and VA to complete 80 percent of cases of AC Service members in no more than 295 days from the date of referral to the IDES to the date of return to duty or notification of the VA benefits decision."

With that all said and potentially due to any unforeseen increased processing of DoD IDES cases by your military branch of service, you may experience an opportunity to fall within the total processing goal for the remaining 20% which can't be completed within 230 days. Indeed, it's reaching pretty far at this point and I wouldn't consider this as a viable course of action but anything is feasible. Another option is to invoke all MEB appeal and PEB appeal opportunities at the appropriately designated timeframes while in the DoD IDES process; it may allow for an extended overall IDES process albeit probably not for any significant amount of time unfortunately.

From an U.S. Army perspective, if you are found unfit for duty by the DoD IDES PEB then you may request Continuation on Active Duty (COAD) status as an exception to policy. As such, COAD is not the responsibility of the IDES PEB. Your assigned PEBLO would help you complete the necessary packet that will go to the USAPDA once you are found unfit by the PEB. A COAD application must be submitted by the Soldier within 14 days of approval of the PEB findings. The COAD status request will then be forwarded to your component for a final determination. To be considered for COAD, you must meet all of the following criteria:
  • Have a condition that will not require undue loss of time from duty for medical treatment
  • Not pose a risk to the health and safety of yourself or other soldiers
  • Be physically capable of performing useful duty in a MOS for which you are currently qualified or potentially trainable
Hopefully, your military branch of service has a similar COAD process as an exception to policy. It may be advantageous to make an inquiry with your assigned PEBLO for any additional information on the availability of a COAD process within your military branch of service.

In response to your second question, the DoVA D-RAS certainly has the authority to make a P&T rating determination as a direct result from all available medical evidence and/or medical documentation during its processing of the DoD IDES case file. I hope that all of this information can be of some assistance while navigating thru the DoD IDES process. Take care!

Thus, I quite often comment that "possessing well-informed knowledge is truly a powerful equalizer!"

Best Wishes!
 

matt.edward.jones

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
In addition to waiting to respond, using every available rebuttle/appeal...
The one thing that DoD doesn't have any control over is the VA rating process. If you claim every single thing that has ever bothered you during your service, it will take a lot longer for them to get the appropriate exams scheduled and completed and go through the rating process. And when your paperwork is at the step for VA rating, consider submitting additional evidence, several times if possible, especially when you see your status advance past 'gathering evidence.' It will trigger your case to bounce back to that step.

I'm not saying it's the most ethical approach, it is using a rater's time that could be spent on another vet's case afterall, but it could tack on enough to help you get you across the finish line.
 

jhb2582

Registered Member
In addition to waiting to respond, using every available rebuttle/appeal...
The one thing that DoD doesn't have any control over is the VA rating process. If you claim every single thing that has ever bothered you during your service, it will take a lot longer for them to get the appropriate exams scheduled and completed and go through the rating process. And when your paperwork is at the step for VA rating, consider submitting additional evidence, several times if possible, especially when you see your status advance past 'gathering evidence.' It will trigger your case to bounce back to that step.

I'm not saying it's the most ethical approach, it is using a rater's time that could be spent on another vet's case afterall, but it could tack on enough to help you get you across the finish line.
Great information. I'm not looking for the most ethical/unethical approach; I'm looking at any means to get to my 20 year mark!
 

jhb2582

Registered Member
Welcome to the PEB Forum! :)

In my opinion with the implementation of the new DTM 18-004 "Revised Timeliness Goals for the IDES" which changed the total processing goal for 80% of the DoD IDES cases to 230 days (that's exactly 7.5 months on average for potential completion of the DoD IDES process), you will probably experience some extreme challenges with trying to obtain 20 years of Active Federal Service (AFS) time if you have already been referred and accepted into the DoD IDES MEB/PEB process at 18 years and 5 months of military active duty service.

In retrospect while on military active duty, my DoD IDES experiences resulted in a total duration of 618 calendar days (or 20.3 months) under the previously published DoD IDES timelines. The original DoD Manual 1332.18, Volume 2, dated August 5, 2014 stated an overall IDES processing as "The goal is for DoD and VA to complete 80 percent of cases of AC Service members in no more than 295 days from the date of referral to the IDES to the date of return to duty or notification of the VA benefits decision."

With that all said and potentially due to any unforeseen increased processing of DoD IDES cases by your military branch of service, you may experience an opportunity to fall within the total processing goal for the remaining 20% which can't be completed within 230 days. Indeed, it's reaching pretty far at this point and I wouldn't consider this as a viable course of action but anything is feasible. Another option is to invoke all MEB appeal and PEB appeal opportunities at the appropriately designated timeframes while in the DoD IDES process; it may allow for an extended overall IDES process albeit probably not for any significant amount of time unfortunately.

From an U.S. Army perspective, if you are found unfit for duty by the DoD IDES PEB then you may request Continuation on Active Duty (COAD) status as an exception to policy. As such, COAD is not the responsibility of the IDES PEB. Your assigned PEBLO would help you complete the necessary packet that will go to the USAPDA once you are found unfit by the PEB. A COAD application must be submitted by the Soldier within 14 days of approval of the PEB findings. The COAD status request will then be forwarded to your component for a final determination. To be considered for COAD, you must meet all of the following criteria:
  • Have a condition that will not require undue loss of time from duty for medical treatment
  • Not pose a risk to the health and safety of yourself or other soldiers
  • Be physically capable of performing useful duty in a MOS for which you are currently qualified or potentially trainable
Hopefully, your military branch of service has a similar COAD process as an exception to policy. It may be advantageous to make an inquiry with your assigned PEBLO for any additional information on the availability of a COAD process within your military branch of service.

In response to your second question, the DoVA D-RAS certainly has the authority to make a P&T rating determination as a direct result from all available medical evidence and/or medical documentation during its processing of the DoD IDES case file. I hope that all of this information can be of some assistance while navigating thru the DoD IDES process. Take care!

Thus, I quite often comment that "possessing well-informed knowledge is truly a powerful equalizer!"

Best Wishes!
Thank you so much, for the detailed information!
 

Warrior644

Staff Member
PEB Forum Lifetime Supporter
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
Thank you so much, for the detailed information!
Indeed, you are quite welcome! Drive on and never quit! Take care!

Thus, I quite often comment that "possessing well-informed knowledge is truly a powerful equalizer!"

Best Wishes!
 

tony292

PEB Forum Veteran
I have been diagnosed with PTSD and Bipolar. Currently, I am at 18 and 5 months, with an approved Fleet Reserve Request. I'm wondering if anyone could provide me with some insight on if I would have any issue getting to my 20 year mark. Secondly, can the VA rat me P&T at the end of the process if I am found unfit?

First off a MEB with no appeals takes 5-6 months, that’s of the stars align and everything just happens fast.

Now add to that 6 months any terminal leave you have.

Then add the fact that then process itself has time added into it. At every stage you’ll have to sign documents. Each time they ask you to sign, you have ten days. There are at least 6 levels of appeals. That in itself is another 60
Days if you simply take all ten to sign every time.

My process took 14 months. You should have nothing to worry about.
 

Warrior644

Staff Member
PEB Forum Lifetime Supporter
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
For clarification purposes only via the new DTM-18-004, it is DoD policy that "The goal is for the DoD and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to complete 80 percent of all active duty (AD) and non-active duty (NAD) Service member cases in no more than 230 days. Attachment 2 of this issuance contains additional guidance on IDES timeliness goals. This processing time goal is effective the date of this DTM and will be fully achieved by March 1, 2019." DTM-18-004 was dated July 30, 2018.

As such, the below information is provided by @Jason Perry (PEBFORUM Site Founder and Military Disability Attorney)...

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Directive-Type Memorandum (DTM)-18-004 – “Revised Timeliness Goals for the IDES"

This DOD Directive Type Memo (DTM) updates the guidelines for time processing of the Integrated Disability Evaluation System.

(The DTM is stated as "DTM 18-004;" This seems like a new naming convention for DTM issuances. I have to think this is based on "18" being the year and, perhaps, "004" being the sequential issuance.)

Overall, this memo states a faster timeline for adjudication of cases. The original DoD Manual 1332.18, Volume 2, dated August 5, 2014 stated an overall goal of IDES case processing as follows:

"a. Overall IDES Process. The goal is for DoD and VA to complete 80 percent of cases of AC Service members in no more than 295 days from the date of referral to the IDES to the date of return to duty or notification of the VA benefits decision."

This issuance puts the total processing goal for 80% of cases as 230 days. This is accomplished by shaving time off at almost each level of the process.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thus, I quite often comment that "possessing well-informed knowledge is truly a powerful equalizer!"

Best Wishes!
 

Sunnyd13

Registered Member
Welcome to the PEB Forum! :)

In my opinion with the implementation of the new DTM 18-004 "Revised Timeliness Goals for the IDES" which changed the total processing goal for 80% of the DoD IDES cases to 230 days (that's exactly 7.5 months on average for potential completion of the DoD IDES process), you will probably experience some extreme challenges with trying to obtain 20 years of Active Federal Service (AFS) time if you have already been referred and accepted into the DoD IDES MEB/PEB process at 18 years and 5 months of military active duty service.

In retrospect while on military active duty, my DoD IDES experiences resulted in a total duration of 618 calendar days (or 20.3 months) under the previously published DoD IDES timelines. The original DoD Manual 1332.18, Volume 2, dated August 5, 2014 stated an overall IDES processing as "The goal is for DoD and VA to complete 80 percent of cases of AC Service members in no more than 295 days from the date of referral to the IDES to the date of return to duty or notification of the VA benefits decision."

With that all said and potentially due to any unforeseen increased processing of DoD IDES cases by your military branch of service, you may experience an opportunity to fall within the total processing goal for the remaining 20% which can't be completed within 230 days. Indeed, it's reaching pretty far at this point and I wouldn't consider this as a viable course of action but anything is feasible. Another option is to invoke all MEB appeal and PEB appeal opportunities at the appropriately designated timeframes while in the DoD IDES process; it may allow for an extended overall IDES process albeit probably not for any significant amount of time unfortunately.

From an U.S. Army perspective, if you are found unfit for duty by the DoD IDES PEB then you may request Continuation on Active Duty (COAD) status as an exception to policy. As such, COAD is not the responsibility of the IDES PEB. Your assigned PEBLO would help you complete the necessary packet that will go to the USAPDA once you are found unfit by the PEB. A COAD application must be submitted by the Soldier within 14 days of approval of the PEB findings. The COAD status request will then be forwarded to your component for a final determination. To be considered for COAD, you must meet all of the following criteria:
  • Have a condition that will not require undue loss of time from duty for medical treatment
  • Not pose a risk to the health and safety of yourself or other soldiers
  • Be physically capable of performing useful duty in a MOS for which you are currently qualified or potentially trainable
Hopefully, your military branch of service has a similar COAD process as an exception to policy. It may be advantageous to make an inquiry with your assigned PEBLO for any additional information on the availability of a COAD process within your military branch of service.

In response to your second question, the DoVA D-RAS certainly has the authority to make a P&T rating determination as a direct result from all available medical evidence and/or medical documentation during its processing of the DoD IDES case file. I hope that all of this information can be of some assistance while navigating thru the DoD IDES process. Take care!

Thus, I quite often comment that "possessing well-informed knowledge is truly a powerful equalizer!"

Best Wishes!
So im actually at 19.5 years active duty time however my SURF ( military personnel file) is inaccurate showing Dec 2020 to be my “would be” retirement . Ive been in 24 years but 7 years was a mix of ART (gs) and tradiitional guard time. When i returned to AD my records basically became a hot mess. Im working this issue presently ( ridiculously painful) the coac sounds like the AF’s LAS option— my question is if you go this route to uou lose your opportunity to fight the finding if they were to deny your LAS. I was planning to fight it all the way to secretary of the AF however i dont want to cut off the nose despite my face. Any insight is appreciated.
 

hondero95

Registered Member
First off a MEB with no appeals takes 5-6 months, that’s of the stars align and everything just happens fast.

Now add to that 6 months any terminal leave you have.

Then add the fact that then process itself has time added into it. At every stage you’ll have to sign documents. Each time they ask you to sign, you have ten days. There are at least 6 levels of appeals. That in itself is another 60
Days if you simply take all ten to sign every time.

My process took 14 months. You should have nothing to worry about.

Well played Sir, your patience was a good virtue
 

Warrior644

Staff Member
PEB Forum Lifetime Supporter
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
So im actually at 19.5 years active duty time however my SURF ( military personnel file) is inaccurate showing Dec 2020 to be my “would be” retirement . Ive been in 24 years but 7 years was a mix of ART (gs) and tradiitional guard time. When i returned to AD my records basically became a hot mess. Im working this issue presently ( ridiculously painful) the coac sounds like the AF’s LAS option— my question is if you go this route to uou lose your opportunity to fight the finding if they were to deny your LAS. I was planning to fight it all the way to secretary of the AF however i dont want to cut off the nose despite my face. Any insight is appreciated.
Welcome to the PEB Forum! :)

Hmm, I am not familiar with requesting an USAF LAS and if it's denied by the designated USAF approval authority would it be appealable at that particular point in time.

Hopefully, another PEBFORUM member with targeted knowledge and/or experience(s) shall eventually provide sound insightful feedback to your specific inquiry. Take care!

Thus, I quite often comment that "possessing well-informed knowledge is truly a powerful equalizer!"

Best Wishes!
 

oldvet

Registered Member
I'm at 18 yrs and 6 months active duty Army, and they are RUSHING my case through at every stage of the process trying to meet the 295 day (now 235 day) guideline per DTM 18-004. I was referred to IDES on 3 OCT 2018, found unfit by PEB on 4 JAN 2019, received my preliminary ratings on 25 JAN 2019 (20% DoD/100%VA), and submitted my VA Ratings Reconsideration request on 7 FEB 2019. My only option to make it to 20 years for concurrent retirement & disability pay is to request COAD (continue on active duty), which I submitted on 7 FEB with my VARR request. I am not holding my breath on the COAD since both my rater (O5) and senior rater (O6) recommended disapproval of my COAD request.

HR 333 Disabled Veterans Tax Termination Act - Write to your representative in Congress to request that they support HR 333, and tell all of your friends and family to do the same, because this is just the beginning of many of us with over 18 years getting pushed out because of Mattis' "Deploy or Get Out" policy.
 

jhb2582

Registered Member
I'm at 18 yrs and 6 months active duty Army, and they are RUSHING my case through at every stage of the process trying to meet the 295 day (now 235 day) guideline per DTM 18-004. I was referred to IDES on 3 OCT 2018, found unfit by PEB on 4 JAN 2019, received my preliminary ratings on 25 JAN 2019 (20% DoD/100%VA), and submitted my VA Ratings Reconsideration request on 7 FEB 2019. My only option to make it to 20 years for concurrent retirement & disability pay is to request COAD (continue on active duty), which I submitted on 7 FEB with my VARR request. I am not holding my breath on the COAD since both my rater (O5) and senior rater (O6) recommended disapproval of my COAD request.

HR 333 Disabled Veterans Tax Termination Act - Write to your representative in Congress to request that they support HR 333, and tell all of your friends and family to do the same, because this is just the beginning of many of us with over 18 years getting pushed out because of Mattis' "Deploy or Get Out" policy.
Could you request presumption of fitness, due to being over 18 years? With your VA findings; why did you submit a reconsideration if you are at 100% already? Sorry to ask questions as if I'm clueless (but I am). Lastly, If you don't mind stating; what conditions did the VA rate you for?

I hope that you are able to get to 20; we have invested too much of our lives in the military, not to get our retirement check.
 

chaplaincharlie

Staff Member
PEB Forum Lifetime Supporter
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
I believe it would be worth it to hire an expert to ensure everything moves sloooowly.

peblawyer.com
 

oldvet

Registered Member
I think it is too late for me. I will be separated with severance after 19 years of active duty with 20% DoD/100% VA unless COAD request is approved (not likely). I sent an email to peblawyer.com a few months ago when my IDES process started and got no response.
 

Sunnyd13

Registered Member
Well played Sir, your patience was a good virtue
So I just requested a formal hearing last Friday got a hearing date the following Monday. I was told by my attorney that bc I am tdrl which is mandated due to ptsd and can’t be changed that I’m ineligible for LAS he gave me DODI 13.2.1a as a reference . This is not what I had been told prior by anyone nor was that in any regulation I had seen prior does anyone have any data to assist.
 
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