Air Force PEB Update

Jason Perry

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Staff Member
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Registered Member
#1


Air Force PEB Update
A few notes on AF PEBs:

First, there is a new "practice" from the FPEB in requesting an "Advance Adjudication" in cases. Essentially, this is not really a "new" or "official" practice; the FPEB has always accepted argument prior to the FPEB hearing in order to reconsider cases before the formal hearing. However, currently, the FPEB is regularly "requesting" members/counsel to submit a memorandum prior to the formal hearing to present evidence and argument that might allow the FPEB to make a decision prior to a formal hearing. This is, in my view, a good practice in many cases as it allows for an early favorable decision in a members case. However, I would point out that this is not "official" in the sense that AF regulations do not specify this process. Is this problematic? I don't think so- reason being that it is not prohibited by AF (or DoD) regulations and may allow for an earlier "good outcome" in members' cases; essentially, it is a "semi-formalized" process for getting another "bite at the apple" for Airmen going through the IDES.

The Advance Adjudication is not technically mandatory- that is, there is no requirement that a member actually participate in, or submit a memorandum for, an "advance adjudication." If the member does not submit argument and evidence or simply opts out (by not responding), then they still have their right to the Formal PEB hearing (for this reason, I see no legally objectionable argument against this new practice- the member loses nothing, and has no rights taken away by participating or not in this practice; it is not an "official" practice, in my opinion, as it is not provided for by regulation. But, like I wrote above, I don't see a problem with this practice as it does not seem to negatively impact Airmen's rights).

Why do I think this process has developed? I think it is a direct result of timeline focus/pressure on the FPEB (and the PEB process generally). I also think it is an effort to tamp down on travel costs for transporting Airmen unnecessarily to San Antonio if the case can be resolved beforehand. Nothing facially nefarious about any of this- again, my instinct is that this is a good development. However, I will watch how this plays out and report any issues I see on the forum.

The other piece of news is that the PEB has consolidated operations at Randolph AFB (or, technically, Joint Base San Antonio- Randolph). While this move should not really be a big deal, it may slightly slow cases in the short term while the board and support personnel complete the transition and deal with internal issues with the move.
 

bobby_0081

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#2


Air Force PEB Update
A few notes on AF PEBs:

First, there is a new "practice" from the FPEB in requesting an "Advance Adjudication" in cases. Essentially, this is not really a "new" or "official" practice; the FPEB has always accepted argument prior to the FPEB hearing in order to reconsider cases before the formal hearing. However, currently, the FPEB is regularly "requesting" members/counsel to submit a memorandum prior to the formal hearing to present evidence and argument that might allow the FPEB to make a decision prior to a formal hearing. This is, in my view, a good practice in many cases as it allows for an early favorable decision in a members case. However, I would point out that this is not "official" in the sense that AF regulations do not specify this process. Is this problematic? I don't think so- reason being that it is not prohibited by AF (or DoD) regulations and may allow for an earlier "good outcome" in members' cases; essentially, it is a "semi-formalized" process for getting another "bite at the apple" for Airmen going through the IDES.

The Advance Adjudication is not technically mandatory- that is, there is no requirement that a member actually participate in, or submit a memorandum for, an "advance adjudication." If the member does not submit argument and evidence or simply opts out (by not responding), then they still have their right to the Formal PEB hearing (for this reason, I see no legally objectionable argument against this new practice- the member loses nothing, and has no rights taken away by participating or not in this practice; it is not an "official" practice, in my opinion, as it is not provided for by regulation. But, like I wrote above, I don't see a problem with this practice as it does not seem to negatively impact Airmen's rights).

Why do I think this process has developed? I think it is a direct result of timeline focus/pressure on the FPEB (and the PEB process generally). I also think it is an effort to tamp down on travel costs for transporting Airmen unnecessarily to San Antonio if the case can be resolved beforehand. Nothing facially nefarious about any of this- again, my instinct is that this is a good development. However, I will watch how this plays out and report any issues I see on the forum.

The other piece of news is that the PEB has consolidated operations at Randolph AFB (or, technically, Joint Base San Antonio- Randolph). While this move should not really be a big deal, it may slightly slow cases in the short term while the board and support personnel complete the transition and deal with internal issues with the move.
My opinion is that this is needed due to the lack of accuracy with the MEB's. If the MEB's all did their job and all did it the same there would be less of a need for this because the IPEB would essentially have all of the information to make the right decisions. I also think that this would be helpful to members who are unfit and get worse during the long drawn out IDES process and a way to possibly get a favorable decision based on more current information and the same goes for those who get better and want to stay in.

My opinion is that the MEB's limit what the PEB can and cannot decide on in the Air Force because the AFI says that the PEB can only find you fit/unfit for conditions listed on the AF Form 618 (Medical Board Report) and if this extra level of review will allow the FPEB to add conditions that the MEB left off then it is a good thing. But essentially it seems to me that it is like keeping on putting air in a tire that has a nail in it. It will get you get you where you need to go without fixing the actual problem and will cost you a little more time doing so...
 

spad0303

Registered Member
#3


Air Force PEB Update
A few notes on AF PEBs:

First, there is a new "practice" from the FPEB in requesting an "Advance Adjudication" in cases. Essentially, this is not really a "new" or "official" practice; the FPEB has always accepted argument prior to the FPEB hearing in order to reconsider cases before the formal hearing. However, currently, the FPEB is regularly "requesting" members/counsel to submit a memorandum prior to the formal hearing to present evidence and argument that might allow the FPEB to make a decision prior to a formal hearing. This is, in my view, a good practice in many cases as it allows for an early favorable decision in a members case. However, I would point out that this is not "official" in the sense that AF regulations do not specify this process. Is this problematic? I don't think so- reason being that it is not prohibited by AF (or DoD) regulations and may allow for an earlier "good outcome" in members' cases; essentially, it is a "semi-formalized" process for getting another "bite at the apple" for Airmen going through the IDES.

The Advance Adjudication is not technically mandatory- that is, there is no requirement that a member actually participate in, or submit a memorandum for, an "advance adjudication." If the member does not submit argument and evidence or simply opts out (by not responding), then they still have their right to the Formal PEB hearing (for this reason, I see no legally objectionable argument against this new practice- the member loses nothing, and has no rights taken away by participating or not in this practice; it is not an "official" practice, in my opinion, as it is not provided for by regulation. But, like I wrote above, I don't see a problem with this practice as it does not seem to negatively impact Airmen's rights).

Why do I think this process has developed? I think it is a direct result of timeline focus/pressure on the FPEB (and the PEB process generally). I also think it is an effort to tamp down on travel costs for transporting Airmen unnecessarily to San Antonio if the case can be resolved beforehand. Nothing facially nefarious about any of this- again, my instinct is that this is a good development. However, I will watch how this plays out and report any issues I see on the forum.

The other piece of news is that the PEB has consolidated operations at Randolph AFB (or, technically, Joint Base San Antonio- Randolph). While this move should not really be a big deal, it may slightly slow cases in the short term while the board and support personnel complete the transition and deal with internal issues with the move.
Did your attorneys have to submit the memorandum or were you able to contact the PEB directly. I would prefer to have my case settled without having to fly to Fort Lewis just to get the same outcome.
 

AmyGallay

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#4


Air Force PEB Update
A few notes on AF PEBs:

First, there is a new "practice" from the FPEB in requesting an "Advance Adjudication" in cases. Essentially, this is not really a "new" or "official" practice; the FPEB has always accepted argument prior to the FPEB hearing in order to reconsider cases before the formal hearing. However, currently, the FPEB is regularly "requesting" members/counsel to submit a memorandum prior to the formal hearing to present evidence and argument that might allow the FPEB to make a decision prior to a formal hearing. This is, in my view, a good practice in many cases as it allows for an early favorable decision in a members case. However, I would point out that this is not "official" in the sense that AF regulations do not specify this process. Is this problematic? I don't think so- reason being that it is not prohibited by AF (or DoD) regulations and may allow for an earlier "good outcome" in members' cases; essentially, it is a "semi-formalized" process for getting another "bite at the apple" for Airmen going through the IDES.

The Advance Adjudication is not technically mandatory- that is, there is no requirement that a member actually participate in, or submit a memorandum for, an "advance adjudication." If the member does not submit argument and evidence or simply opts out (by not responding), then they still have their right to the Formal PEB hearing (for this reason, I see no legally objectionable argument against this new practice- the member loses nothing, and has no rights taken away by participating or not in this practice; it is not an "official" practice, in my opinion, as it is not provided for by regulation. But, like I wrote above, I don't see a problem with this practice as it does not seem to negatively impact Airmen's rights).

Why do I think this process has developed? I think it is a direct result of timeline focus/pressure on the FPEB (and the PEB process generally). I also think it is an effort to tamp down on travel costs for transporting Airmen unnecessarily to San Antonio if the case can be resolved beforehand. Nothing facially nefarious about any of this- again, my instinct is that this is a good development. However, I will watch how this plays out and report any issues I see on the forum.

The other piece of news is that the PEB has consolidated operations at Randolph AFB (or, technically, Joint Base San Antonio- Randolph). While this move should not really be a big deal, it may slightly slow cases in the short term while the board and support personnel complete the transition and deal with internal issues with the move.
This may help many in the long run to accomplish more MEBs while saving monies on travel cost.

However, I am glad they are going to leave the option for a formal Board. For example, my local Board did not even want to initiate my MEB when my diagnosis was a mandatory MEB condition. They did not make amendments when errors were pointed out. I don't believe local boards should have all the power, because they do have some incentive on rating to support their bases mission over the members best interest. They are also not neutral, due to hearsay from commanders and preconception of the members. And at many bases, the PEB doctors are brand new Captains, that are still finding their way through regs, ratings, and conditions.

Next thing you know, they will change the hearings to be by phone, like they did with PHAs. Many items get missed, overlooked, or down played this way. I think it would make the process longer, having to go through a third party to talk to the PEB. The face to face formal hearing was the best thing that could have happened to me, for me to discuss, explain, and show reasons for each of my conditions to a neutral party, who didn't know me from Eve.

JMO
 

bobby_0081

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#5
Did your attorneys have to submit the memorandum or were you able to contact the PEB directly. I would prefer to have my case settled without having to fly to Fort Lewis just to get the same outcome.
You replied to Jason's post asking him about his attorneys... Jason is an attorney and represents service members in all of the various services. Jason is also the founder of the pebforum.
 

SonOfSoul

Registered Member
#6
First, there is a new "practice" from the FPEB in requesting an "Advance Adjudication" in cases. Essentially, this is not really a "new" or "official" practice; the FPEB has always accepted argument prior to the FPEB hearing in order to reconsider cases before the formal hearing. However, currently, the FPEB is regularly "requesting" members/counsel to submit a memorandum prior to the formal hearing to present evidence and argument that might allow the FPEB to make a decision prior to a formal hearing. This is, in my view, a good practice in many cases as it allows for an early favorable decision in a members case. However, I would point out that this is not "official" in the sense that AF regulations do not specify this process. Is this problematic? I don't think so- reason being that it is not prohibited by AF (or DoD) regulations and may allow for an earlier "good outcome" in members' cases; essentially, it is a "semi-formalized" process for getting another "bite at the apple" for Airmen going through the IDES.

The Advance Adjudication is not technically mandatory- that is, there is no requirement that a member actually participate in, or submit a memorandum for, an "advance adjudication." If the member does not submit argument and evidence or simply opts out (by not responding), then they still have their right to the Formal PEB hearing (for this reason, I see no legally objectionable argument against this new practice- the member loses nothing, and has no rights taken away by participating or not in this practice; it is not an "official" practice, in my opinion, as it is not provided for by regulation. But, like I wrote above, I don't see a problem with this practice as it does not seem to negatively impact Airmen's rights).

Why do I think this process has developed? I think it is a direct result of timeline focus/pressure on the FPEB (and the PEB process generally). I also think it is an effort to tamp down on travel costs for transporting Airmen unnecessarily to San Antonio if the case can be resolved beforehand. Nothing facially nefarious about any of this- again, my instinct is that this is a good development. However, I will watch how this plays out and report any issues I see on the forum.

The other piece of news is that the PEB has consolidated operations at Randolph AFB (or, technically, Joint Base San Antonio- Randolph). While this move should not really be a big deal, it may slightly slow cases in the short term while the board and support personnel complete the transition and deal with internal issues with the move.
So, when is this change supposed to go into effect? I just got my initial decision from AFPC and they want to do a full MEB on me. Will I be able to participate in this Advance Adjudication? This subject also brings another question; at what point in time would I be able to submit a memorandum? Does the formal hearing refer to the time period where a person goes to HQ (and is assigned an attorney) to rebut the findings? At any rate, I will keep everyone on the forum in the loop regarding my experience...
 

spad0303

Registered Member
#7
You replied to Jason's post asking him about his attorneys... Jason is an attorney and represents service members in all of the various services. Jason is also the founder of the pebforum.
Thanks for the info bobby; jason, talked to my attorney and he informed me to just do a formal board in person and to be careful reading anything on these forums. Not sure what his issue is with getting as much info as I can before my board. Still, any information is appreciated.
 

Jason Perry

Benevolent Leader
Site Founder
Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#8
So, when is this change supposed to go into effect? I just got my initial decision from AFPC and they want to do a full MEB on me. Will I be able to participate in this Advance Adjudication? This subject also brings another question; at what point in time would I be able to submit a memorandum? Does the formal hearing refer to the time period where a person goes to HQ (and is assigned an attorney) to rebut the findings? At any rate, I will keep everyone on the forum in the loop regarding my experience...
Already in effect.

Formal hearing is where a three member meets to consider your case and you have the right to appear.
 

Jason Perry

Benevolent Leader
Site Founder
Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#9
Thanks for the info bobby; jason, talked to my attorney and he informed me to just do a formal board in person and to be careful reading anything on these forums. Not sure what his issue is with getting as much info as I can before my board. Still, any information is appreciated.
Don't really have to much to say in response to what your attorney said....there is no context here and "just doing a formal board in person" doesn't mean much without knowing what the issues are and whether you would be better served by requesting reconsideration of your case. (Though, you mentioned earlier going to Ft. Lewis- that means your case is an Army case, so this thread does not really apply to you; however, the Army has allowed reconsideration requests for many years...it is not a "formalized" as the AF current practice, but can be done).

Hope all goes well for you!
 

bobby_0081

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#11

Wild Blue

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#12
I think the AJ is generally a good idea, in that if you can have some "easy" appeals approved by correspondence, everybody wins. The service members gets what they're contending, the board and counsel don't have to take the time to prepare for and conduct a formal board, the service member doesn't have to take their time for the full TDY, and most importantly to the Air Force, they don't have to pay all the TDY costs, which can be $2000+ each time.

In my case, my AJ was rather informal. When the FPEB saw my case, they went ahead and scheduled my board, telling my counsel that "they'd look at anything I wanted to send them ahead of time". I did send an AJ argument, which they informally denied but didn't say why. For me, there must have been some sort of reason (rank, TOS, complexity or severity of conditions, nature of the appeal claims, or whatever) that they wanted me to appear in person. Since I ended up getting GRILLED for three and a half hours (no joke) apparently they really wanted to ask me questions in person.

By the way, for anyone that goes to an FPEB, your counsel will tell you to watch out for LtCol Keryl Green on the board. She is rather derogatory and harsh to anyone that appears before an FPEB, regardless of the situation, that person's rank or experience, etc.
 

bobby_0081

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#13
I think the AJ is generally a good idea, in that if you can have some "easy" appeals approved by correspondence, everybody wins. The service members gets what they're contending, the board and counsel don't have to take the time to prepare for and conduct a formal board, the service member doesn't have to take their time for the full TDY, and most importantly to the Air Force, they don't have to pay all the TDY costs, which can be $2000+ each time.

In my case, my AJ was rather informal. When the FPEB saw my case, they went ahead and scheduled my board, telling my counsel that "they'd look at anything I wanted to send them ahead of time". I did send an AJ argument, which they informally denied but didn't say why. For me, there must have been some sort of reason (rank, TOS, complexity or severity of conditions, nature of the appeal claims, or whatever) that they wanted me to appear in person. Since I ended up getting GRILLED for three and a half hours (no joke) apparently they really wanted to ask me questions in person.

By the way, for anyone that goes to an FPEB, your counsel will tell you to watch out for LtCol Keryl Green on the board. She is rather derogatory and harsh to anyone that appears before an FPEB, regardless of the situation, that person's rank or experience, etc.
It troubles me to hear of people like Lt Col Green. The last thing a wounded ill and injured person needs is someone on the formal board who is derogatory and harsh. I would bet if you put her in the same situation and treated her that way she would probably cry foul.
 

maparker

Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#14
The Army and Navy do something similar. One concern I have is that the PEBs are reporting very few cases go to the formal board. This paints an artificial picture that the process is accurate based on the lack of formal boards when in fact there are many errors that are being fixed in these pre formal board processes. Don't get me wrong, I think this is a good idea but the issues that lead to corrections by pre formal board actions and formal board actions need to be documented and tracked to identify trends and fix them. If the mistakes are not made in the first place the timeline can really be decreased. I think "mistakes" fall into two major categories. First, inadequate documentation by the MEB which is sometimes driven by the service member (bringing up new conditions/issues post MEB) and sometime it is driven by the MEB not following proper procedures. The second category is improper practices by the IPEB.

Mike
 

Weapons loader

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#15
maparker,

Now you said the member bringing up new conditions post MEB, I was told nothing could be added even before the MEB runs it's course. I wanted nueopathy for my arms and legs added, my PCM agreed to add them during a recent appointment but the PEBLO said no. She told me I could request an IMR once it was done. I sill have over a week before the C&P that does the physical. Those conditions were added as additional conditions by the VA but should of been added initially as unfitting. So now instead of saving everyones time, I have to wait another week and a half to have it reviewed by a doctor other than my PCM who already said he would of added them had I discussed it with him prior to the NARSUM. The problem is that they changed my PCM mid MEB.
 

maparker

Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#16
The bottom line is that all conditions must be covered by the MEB so put your request in an email to help document the issue. The IMR is an opportunity to get it fixed but it should not have to wait until then, that will only cause additional delays. Are you in contact with a MEB outreach counsel?

Mike
 

Weapons loader

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#17
I'd have to say no because I'm not sure what that is. I think my PEBLO got irritated early on when I was emailing her and she asked me to call her, I told her I'd rather email so I would have copies of our correspondence. I've typed up memorandums of the conversations I've had, not sure that it'll help.
 

maparker

Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#18
MEB outreach counsels are JAG officers that assist on MEBs to ensure they are done correctly.

mike
 

bobby_0081

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#19
The bottom line is that all conditions must be covered by the MEB so put your request in an email to help document the issue. The IMR is an opportunity to get it fixed but it should not have to wait until then, that will only cause additional delays. Are you in contact with a MEB outreach counsel?

Mike
Mr. Parker,

The ANG and AF Reserve have regulations that go against allowing members to have everything listed during their MEB's. The rule is if you don't have an LOD then they won't put it on the AF Form 618. This happened to me. I understand them not letting people list things that happened while not in a duty status and this is what the rule is supposed to cover but they seem to abuse it in my case.

My story is I joined the AD AF in Nov 2000 and then got out in 2004 through a program called Palace Chase, which is a transfer program where you go from AD to Guard before your initial enlistment is finished and in doing so you double the amount time left on your current enlistment. There is no break in service or at least there wasn't for me. While on AD I had a shoulder injury, anxiety, and a few other problems in which still plague me to this day and they are in my Service Treatment Record. I had an injury during a war games simulation in 2010 to my knee and I was given an LOD a few months later but not placed on orders so it was a nightmare to receive treatment and it dragged out my treatment and hindered my recovery so eventually I was told I needed a MEB and here I am today. I still have the same thing wrong with my shoulder, Torn Labrum, with limited ROM and pain 4 out of 7 days a week but I couldn't have it placed on my MEB report (AF Form 618) because I didn't have an LOD and the doctor at my unit told me I hadn't aggravated the injury and my argument wasn't that it was aggravated but that it never got better and I just dealt with it the best I could. I have also had two times that my anxiety that started on AD caused me problems and when I reported it to my unit they put me in for a waiver to stay in service and NGB approved the waiver and then turned around and put me through a MEB less than a year later for my knee and wouldn't add the anxiety because I didn't have an LOD for it. If they were to list everything and the PEB decided that these two conditions fell into category 2 or 3 I would understand but they refused to do add them and even after doing an IMR they still would only allow my "main boardable" condition to be listed.

What are your thoughts? If you would like more info send me a PM and I will share as much with you as you would like because I am sure I am not the only one this ever happens to and I am sure I will not be the last who it happens to.

Thanks,

Bobby
 

maparker

Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#20
The AF reg conflicts with DoDI 1332.38. Even if the condition is not LOD, the PEB needs to assess the condition for fitness. On the active side, EPTS conditions are covered in the MEB and assessed by the PEB. Has the VA ever rated the conditions the AF states are LOD no?

mike