I want a RTD

Rmjames

Registered Member
#1
A quick BLUF
I am an E-7 at 19 yrs/3 months and just received my IPEB unfit letter on 13 Oct 2017 for generalized anxiety and linked with unspecified depression. What drove my MEB was a special duty assignment that I fought for was cancelled due to a reaction to meds the MH provider placed me on. They made things severely worse and I was then placed on another to try. During that period, my assignment was delayed and then canceled so I could be evaluated for the new meds. Due to that, I ended up going through a RILO and returned to duty. Two days before my profile expired, I was tagged for a PCS to Korea. Most of this stemmed from a pissing contest with my assignments person from AFPC but that is another story. During my medical out-processing for Korea, I was flagged and denied due to my MH record by the local doctor (not PACAF) with no explanation and then placed on a no PCS, TDY or deployment profile due to MEB actions. Up until this point, I was WWQ’s with no issues and I do not know where this came from since my condition is stable. Keep in mind also that I have a stellar record, many awards/dec’s, missed zero days of work and also maintain a TS clearance.

Long story short, the IPEB came back unfitting due to MH with a 50% DOD & 80% VA with a recommendation of perm retirement. My CC’s letter was stellar but the sticking point was the WWQ. Since my new profile stated “No deployment”, my CC in his letter stated “She can fulfill her duties well “In Garrison” several times and the board singled in on this. Granted, the only reason why I am not WWQ’d is due to being in the MEB process but this was held against me.

My FPEB is coming soon (1st week of Dec) and I am less than impressed with my appointment lawyer. I rarely hear from him and I seriously doubt these folks put forth much of an effort due to just checking a box along the way. He fully understands my intentions that I want a RTD but he has been nothing but pessimistic in the few returned emails that I receive. I had thought about a civilian lawyer but I may now be too far along and I doubt the FPEB will push my formal date. I am also trying to understand the rational of being deemed “unfit” when even my primary doctors has stated in her own paperwork that I am quite fit. I also have letters I will be taking down to the board from several O-6’s, Chiefs and high level GS’s but from what I hear, may not matter.

At the end of the day, I am doing my best to try and delay this as much as possible but am running out of ideas short of a concurrent congressional. With the amount of leave I am currently sitting on, permissive, out-processing etc, I only need to make it to mid Apr 2018 to hit my 20 yr mark. But at this rate, I am afraid I may fall a month or two short even with a SAFPC appeal.

Looking back, I should have never gone to MH on base. What is truly sad is we still have supervisors up to wing commanders telling their folks to seek help and there will be “little” to “no effects” on their careers, but that is far from reality. The question on why the stigma of seeing MH is still very obvious from processes like this.
 

JJAF

Registered Member
#3
I feel your pain. I actually just talked to my MH doc about a week ago and expressed my displeasure with her recommendation of a full MEB. My case is different from yours but here goes. Back injury that precluded PT testing was IDd as potentially unfitting condition. MH called me and asked me to come in for an eval. MH NARSUM came back as recommend full MEB. I asked PCM if he started MEB and he said no. I asked the MH doc about it and told her point blank that this is why people don't come to MH and that I was seeking legal counsel and she redacted her NARSUM. I am now seeking MH treatment, which I realistically need (PTSD). And she is putting me on a Code 31, in treatment... Lots of docs don't want to "put you out" but if you aren't getting better or trying to by seeking treatment then they get pushed into it... another thing is that the appeals process for SAFPC can take a long time. After you exhaust that, you can accept the unfit finding and apply for LAS. You can easily drag this out to April. Good luck and keep your head up/continue to do good work that your Chain of Command values.
 

Jason Perry

Benevolent Leader
Site Founder
Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#4
A quick BLUF
I am an E-7 at 19 yrs/3 months and just received my IPEB unfit letter on 13 Oct 2017 for generalized anxiety and linked with unspecified depression. What drove my MEB was a special duty assignment that I fought for was cancelled due to a reaction to meds the MH provider placed me on. They made things severely worse and I was then placed on another to try. During that period, my assignment was delayed and then canceled so I could be evaluated for the new meds. Due to that, I ended up going through a RILO and returned to duty. Two days before my profile expired, I was tagged for a PCS to Korea. Most of this stemmed from a pissing contest with my assignments person from AFPC but that is another story. During my medical out-processing for Korea, I was flagged and denied due to my MH record by the local doctor (not PACAF) with no explanation and then placed on a no PCS, TDY or deployment profile due to MEB actions. Up until this point, I was WWQ’s with no issues and I do not know where this came from since my condition is stable. Keep in mind also that I have a stellar record, many awards/dec’s, missed zero days of work and also maintain a TS clearance.

Long story short, the IPEB came back unfitting due to MH with a 50% DOD & 80% VA with a recommendation of perm retirement. My CC’s letter was stellar but the sticking point was the WWQ. Since my new profile stated “No deployment”, my CC in his letter stated “She can fulfill her duties well “In Garrison” several times and the board singled in on this. Granted, the only reason why I am not WWQ’d is due to being in the MEB process but this was held against me.

My FPEB is coming soon (1st week of Dec) and I am less than impressed with my appointment lawyer. I rarely hear from him and I seriously doubt these folks put forth much of an effort due to just checking a box along the way. He fully understands my intentions that I want a RTD but he has been nothing but pessimistic in the few returned emails that I receive. I had thought about a civilian lawyer but I may now be too far along and I doubt the FPEB will push my formal date. I am also trying to understand the rational of being deemed “unfit” when even my primary doctors has stated in her own paperwork that I am quite fit. I also have letters I will be taking down to the board from several O-6’s, Chiefs and high level GS’s but from what I hear, may not matter.

At the end of the day, I am doing my best to try and delay this as much as possible but am running out of ideas short of a concurrent congressional. With the amount of leave I am currently sitting on, permissive, out-processing etc, I only need to make it to mid Apr 2018 to hit my 20 yr mark. But at this rate, I am afraid I may fall a month or two short even with a SAFPC appeal.

Looking back, I should have never gone to MH on base. What is truly sad is we still have supervisors up to wing commanders telling their folks to seek help and there will be “little” to “no effects” on their careers, but that is far from reality. The question on why the stigma of seeing MH is still very obvious from processes like this.
You need to seek qualified legal counsel to maximize your chances for a good outcome. Between the SAFPC appeal and any appeals to the VA (via a VARR) it is likely very feasible to at least stay in service until you reach 20 years (and, thereby, qualify for CRDP at least, which will have a major impact on your compensation). With my most recent case, I am at 5 months and running on my SAFPC appeal. But fighting for fitness, you are limiting your appellate options and I am not sure this is the correct approach to achieve the goal of maximizing your retirement compensation.

Best of luck to you! I hope you get a good outcome.
 

rjames082705

Registered Member
#5
You need to seek qualified legal counsel to maximize your chances for a good outcome. Between the SAFPC appeal and any appeals to the VA (via a VARR) it is likely very feasible to at least stay in service until you reach 20 years (and, thereby, qualify for CRDP at least, which will have a major impact on your compensation). With my most recent case, I am at 5 months and running on my SAFPC appeal. But fighting for fitness, you are limiting your appellate options and I am not sure this is the correct approach to achieve the goal of maximizing your retirement compensation.

Best of luck to you! I hope you get a good outcome.
But fighting for fitness, you are limiting your appellate options and I am not sure this is the correct approach to achieve the goal of maximizing your retirement compensation.

Could you possibly explain this?
 
#6
Update 12 Dec 2017--IPEB came back as unfit. Like others have stated, they are using the MEB Code 37 (no TDY, PCS) profile against me stating I am non deployable and that was one of their main reasons for their decision. I have letters of recommendation from several O-6's to include a former wing commander of mine, several O-5's, O-3's and several CMSgt's stating my MH appointments and diagnosis have zero bearing on my duties (never missed work and also still have a TS clearance) and I perform above the others. I also included my MAJCOM level awards and several others but they didn't seem to even bother looking at them or taking them into consideration. I have also found several errors in the NARSUM with items that were misstated or just plain incorrect. When I asked the head of Mental Health (I have never even seen him) he did say he would write a letter to the board for me but also chose to purposely tank it by stating I was asking him to change my diagnosis and "If the board wants to see my condition in the future, they should focus on my past".

My next step will be the SAFPC process along with a concurrent congressional complaint. Like I have learned from others here, there is zero recourse to get the documents corrected and I will not except the "pursue the board of corrections" route after being medically retired at 19 years & 10 months. I can honestly state that I now know why there is still such a stigma for going to mental health for anything.
 

Fran0609

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#7
Update 12 Dec 2017--IPEB came back as unfit. Like others have stated, they are using the MEB Code 37 (no TDY, PCS) profile against me stating I am non deployable and that was one of their main reasons for their decision. I have letters of recommendation from several O-6's to include a former wing commander of mine, several O-5's, O-3's and several CMSgt's stating my MH appointments and diagnosis have zero bearing on my duties (never missed work and also still have a TS clearance) and I perform above the others. I also included my MAJCOM level awards and several others but they didn't seem to even bother looking at them or taking them into consideration. I have also found several errors in the NARSUM with items that were misstated or just plain incorrect. When I asked the head of Mental Health (I have never even seen him) he did say he would write a letter to the board for me but also chose to purposely tank it by stating I was asking him to change my diagnosis and "If the board wants to see my condition in the future, they should focus on my past".

My next step will be the SAFPC process along with a concurrent congressional complaint. Like I have learned from others here, there is zero recourse to get the documents corrected and I will not except the "pursue the board of corrections" route after being medically retired at 19 years & 10 months. I can honestly state that I now know why there is still such a stigma for going to mental health for anything.
When I did my SAFPC appeal, it took almost 3 months to get an answer back. If you need to get to April you just might make it. After SAFPC, if you still get an unfit you can do a VARR, whicj buys even more time. I think you will make it!!!
 

Jason Perry

Benevolent Leader
Site Founder
Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#8
When I did my SAFPC appeal, it took almost 3 months to get an answer back. If you need to get to April you just might make it. After SAFPC, if you still get an unfit you can do a VARR, whicj buys even more time. I think you will make it!!!
Your point is well taken and a good way to think about things. However, complicating his case is the fact that he was seeking a Return to Duty finding, which position, if maintained at SAFPC appeal, will be a much faster case to decide. (There are less issues to raise with that position and the appeals would normally be decided much sooner). VARR is another valid step to take to maximize getting to at least 20 years of service.