Former Army S/SGT M. Plante takes you through the corrupt process for his service-connected disability claim. A twenty-four-year fight to victory, with a retroactive payment.
This book addresses many issues that may help veterans in their claim, including benefits veterans and family members may not be aware of.
VA Regional Office (VARO)
VARO wrongfully denied my claim in 1957 (see the evidence), and the Board agreed. See Emails that prove that an R.O. employee did alter a V.A. doctor's opinion. R.O. Withheld case file from the Appeals Management Center, violated the Court's order, due process and the rule of fair play, and much more.
Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA)
The Board's Veterans Law Judges (VLJ)has made many arbitrary, capricious unethical decisions. In (Cushman v. Shinseki), the Federal Circuit Court held that altering VA. medical records judicators making arbitrary and capricious decisions is a violation of the Veteran's Constitutional Rights. Change the wording in a V.A. doctor's opinion to favor the DVA. VLJ did not address the positive evidence, or the appellant's arguments (and the VA. -OGC agreed) Violated the Court's order. Remand the case for the same reason again and again. For VLJ's to make a remand able error in 70 to 90% of claims to the Court in any given year is unacceptable. And much more
Appeals Management Center (AMC)
The AMC tried to pay an attorney thousands of dollars that he was not entitled to (See the evidence). They did not have the case file for the time period on remand. No one is ever held accountable violated the Court's Order and due process of the law. And much more
V.A. Office of General Counsel VA-OGC)
General Counsel lied and misled the facts in her brief to the Court and was never held accountable. See Emails that prove that the OGC intentionally delayed my case for months by withholding the litigation materials from the Board (to delay the case) And much more.
U.S. Court of Appeals for Veteran
CAVC is an Article One court, does not hold trials, hear testimony, or witness what it is, is a reviewing panel. Court liberally applies the "lack of substantial requirement" for Attorney's fees, any error warranting a remand for any reason. Court remands too many cases on a narrow decision, which is beneficial to the lawyer, not the veteran. In my opinion, our Veteran's Court is no longer about Veterans' claims but about Attorney's fees. For Example, in 2019, there were 8,470 appeals to the Court, 5,948 were for Attorney's fees, Court made decisions in 5,330 on Attorney's fees granted 5,317. Seventy-Five Percent of appeals to the Court are for Attorney's fees, not Veterans' claims. And much more.
Veteran's Benefits Administration (VBA)
The Board has decided to get more medical experts' opinions; however, the VBA did not provide the doctor with the complete case file, as required by law. The VBA did not honor my Freedom of Information request. Sent important information to the wrong VARO. (twice) And much more.
The following was taken as is, with words in bold, from the Court's website.
However, I just found out that it has been removed from their website in this format.
To review now, Go to the Courts home page click on decisions type in the search box 16.2057 click on View. Go to page 23 paragraph 3, then to page 25 paragraph 2, then page 27 for the rest.
No 16.2057 eaja Judge Falvey and Judge Pietsch wrote an opinion.
Congress required an offset for" same work. "But under the majority's rule, rather than
offsetting for the same work, attorneys are guaranteed to be paid twice for it.
Worse still, the majority's rule will allow attorneys who continue to represent the veteran after a Court remand to receive a fee of 20% of the veteran's past-due benefits no matter how little work they perform to represent the client before the agency the attorney need only enter an appearance after a remand from this Court without doing any work to retain both the full EAJA fees and be engorged by 20% of the veteran's past-due benefits . Here, even a cursory review of Mr. Ravin's work done before the Board after the Court
remand should give us pause. First, he received $5,787 in EAJA fees for obtaining a reasons-or-bases remand at the Court, Then before the agency, Mr. Ravin got $17,239.40 which represented 20% of the veteran's past-due benefits.($23,126.40
less $5,787 to offset the EAJA fees yes, and less a $100 administrative fee charged by VA under a section 5904(d) representation agreement). And now he wants $5,787, which would otherwise be paid to the veteran.
Now, it is true that there may be a good reason for not devoting more adjudicative resources to reviewing attorney billing. It is also true that we as a Court are poorly equipped to make policy determinations that juggle VA resources used on reviewing fees on top of a significant claim backlog.
("Congress is an institution better equipped to amass and evaluate the vast amounts of data bearing on such an issue.") But that is precisely why I would leave this issue to Congress to address,.
In conclusion, I would affirm the Board's decision. I would do so because, despite ample opportunity to correct any perceived flaws in our Carpenter decision, Congress has let the decision stand. In the 18 years since Carpenter, the number of cases handled by attorneys before the agency has risen to an all-time high. If our Carpenter decision had such a negative impact, all parties quickly shrugged it off. Even so, the majority adopts a new rule that refuses to look at the work performed when considering what constitutes the "same work" and so potentially unjustly enriches attorneys at the expense of veterans.
Also, in the book
Benefits that veterans and family members might not be aware of.
See what some lawyers are paid under the Equal Access to Justice Act.
A list of diseases subject to presumptive Service-Connected disability.
Information for Active Military Personnel, National Guard, Reserves, Coast Guard Filing a pre-discharge claim, and much more.
If you are a V.A. employee or connected to the V.A., you might not want to read this book, and I am sure you will not like it.
Agent Orange exposure and VA disability compensation
Corruption and Fraud
Former VA Employee Charged with Stealing $8.2 million worth of HIV medication.