Extension Denied - ETS during PEB

19 years_service

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I'm a National Guard member with over 20 years in service - have 20 year letter. My injuries are found in the line of duty. I was on orders for under 30 days when injury occured. I am coded 37 and not on medcon orders. Prior to the start of the MEB The VA awarded me 70% PTSD and MDD as a result of MSA.

My issue is that I am in the middle of the PEB and my ETS is this Tuesday, May 12. I was supposed to extend my enlistment this week, but my command is telling me that I now need a waiver before they can extend me. I highly doubt this waiver will be processed in time for me to extend.

My experience with the guard is that they fire people by not extending or re enlisting them.

What happens if I ETS during the PEB process? If I ETS will I also lose VA benefits for not completing the board? Can I go back and apply for a regular retirement at age 60?

I think the reg the are going by is ANGI 36-2002.

I need advice on what my rights are and what actions to take.
 

FloridaInjuredInCombat

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Look under AFI 36-3212 PHYSICAL EVALUATION FOR RETENTION, RETIREMENT, AND SEPARATION

Chapter 8 EVALUATION OF AIR RESERVE COMPONENT (ARC) MEMBERS

It's pretty straightforward that you are entitled to a Physical Evaluation if your injury is LOD and the only way that you are pushed out without the full Physical Evaluation process being completed is if you have a pending punitive discharge or dismissal. So unless they give you an Article 15 AND have enough against you to discharge you punitively you should be good to go.

8.2. Eligibility for Disability Processing. The following ARC members who have impairments which were incurred or aggravated in the line of duty are eligible for disability processing:

8.2.1. On active duty for 31 days or more while the member was entitled to basic pay.

8.2.3. On active duty for 30 days or less or on call to Inactive Duty Training (IDT).

8.3. Ineligibility for Disability Processing. ARC members are ineligible for disability processing if the member is pending an approved, unsuspended, punitive discharge or dismissal.

I would say if they don't get your extension processed in time, raise hell about it, with an IG complaint, Senator, and calling the State TAG or Chief of Staff's office and let them know that bum rushing an injured Airman out the door without properly have them medically evaluated is not only morally wrong, it's against the regulations and illegal.

Hope this helps...
 
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FloridaInjuredInCombat

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Also keep in mind, that in the Guard or Reserves, if you retire normally you will not get any retirement pay till you're 60, and more importantly the only Tricare insurance you will qualify for is Retired Reserve, which is around $900 a month premiums (it's so high because the law says there is no help with the costs by the Gov't).

On the other hand, if you are medically retired, you will draw whatever military retirement you're due immediately OR the VA disability benefits, whichever is higher. You can't normally draw both. Though you may still qualify for CRDP, which I'm not well read up on, but it allows you to draw both if you qualify, but only after age 60.

The real game changer is IF your LOD condition(s) is "Combat Related" to include "instrumentalities of war" and "simulations of war" known as CRSC - Combat Related Special Compensation. With CRSC you'll be able to immediately upon Medical Retirement (once you apply for and are approved for it) draw BOTH your VA disability benefit AND a calculated portion of your Military Retirement benefits AND CRSC benefit.

Not to mention if you're Medically Retired from the Guard or Reserves you qualify immediately for Tricare Standard or Tricare Prime (your choice). Just as if you were Medically Retired off of Active Duty.

See United States Code, Title 10, Chapter 61, Section 1204 (for Reservists), paid under Section 1401 (which is the same for RC and AD when calculating retirement pay).

So it's in your best interests to stay the course and Medically Retire, providing your condition(s) that does not meet retention standards and/or is an Unfitting Condition was in the line of duty AND should be rated at over 30% (the DOD side threshold for Medical Retirement).

Hope this helps...
 
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nwlivewire

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ALSO
Look under AFI 36-3212 PHYSICAL EVALUATION FOR RETENTION, RETIREMENT, AND SEPARATION

Chapter 8 EVALUATION OF AIR RESERVE COMPONENT (ARC) MEMBERS

It's pretty straightforward that you are entitled to a Physical Evaluation if your injury is LOD and the only way that you are pushed out without the full Physical Evaluation process being completed is if you have a pending punitive discharge or dismissal. So unless they give you an Article 15 AND have enough against you to discharge you punitively you should be good to go.

8.2. Eligibility for Disability Processing. The following ARC members who have impairments which were incurred or aggravated in the line of duty are eligible for disability processing:

8.2.1. On active duty for 31 days or more while the member was entitled to basic pay.

8.2.3. On active duty for 30 days or less or on call to Inactive Duty Training (IDT).

8.3. Ineligibility for Disability Processing. ARC members are ineligible for disability processing if the member is pending an approved, unsuspended, punitive discharge or dismissal.

I would say if they don't get your extension processed in time, raise hell about it, with an IG complaint, Senator, and calling the State TAG or Chief of Staff's office and let them know that bum rushing an injured Airman out the door without properly have them medically evaluated is not only morally wrong, it's against the regulations and illegal.

Hope this helps...


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scoutCC

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Commander shouldn't be involved in a contract extension for the MEB. Should be initiated by the PEBLO, approved by the MTF commander and only require you to sign a memo agreeing.
 

Ed Mercanti

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Not quite as simple as it seems. Disability separations are to compensate people for the loss of a career. That's why the military only compensates people for the conditions which are unfitting. If you have completed your career, then there is nothing to compensate you for. You have your 20 year letter. However, it is stated that if something major happens to you after you have completed your career (you're in a major car accident after you submit your retirement papers) you should be medically boarded. But MSA is a disease and your MDD and PTSD is secondary to the MSA and you state you were on less than 30 days of active duty. Diseases incurred on less than 30 days of active duty are not normally considered service connected (they are considered EPTS). My guess is you will be transferred to the Retired Reserve at or before your ETS.
 

FloridaInjuredInCombat

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Thank you for the information. Is there a way to tell which regulation holds a higher precedence?
There is another thread regarding the same question, it may help you.
http://www.pebforum.com/site/threads/20-year-letter.17937/

IMHO, I would fight for the PEB to be continued to it's outcome, especially if it means you likely Medical Retirement as the advantages of that are great, as explained in the earlier post.

As for the argument that your Reserve Retirement is warranted because you are done with your career, the whole point of you having to wait till you're 60 to draw Reserve Retirement is because you're expected to have a civilian career as well. If you're disabled due to your military service, that negatively affects BOTH your military and civilian career, and should be compensated accordingly.

Beyond that, if you are unable to continue your career (military and civilian) due to being disabled due to your military service, it would be the greatest of injustices for the military to send you off without the medical coverage and military retirement benefits until you're 60, and then only a shell of what they should be.

NO, fight for the PEB to continue and be Medically Retired, with immediate coverage of Tricare and military retirement benefits. This is not a fight you want to walk away from.

As for the precedence you asked about, the regulation I quoted you covers Physical Evaluation being due, so unless there's something in the regulation that you mentioned that specifically says it overrides or circumvents the actual PEB regulation, then it really should have no bearing on your situation as an injured Airmen already in the IDES (MEB/PEB) system.

Please for the SA of all, let us know how the extension works out.
 

FloridaInjuredInCombat

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Two more things to add...

My Retirement Service Officer notified me recently to be sure to pursue CRDP (concurrent retirement disability pay) should I have 15 or 20 good years, AT the point I reach age 60. In my case I do NOT have 15 good years, though I may dispute that at the ABCMR. So it does not apply to me, but it would certainly apply to you.

This is above and beyond CRSC/military retirement benefit which I should be able to draw immediately upon retirement, after applying and being deemed qualified by the Army for CRSC (combat related special compensation).

Also, if you are an M-Day (drilling) Reserve or Guard member, who due to your line of duty injury are unable to work either in your civilian job, OR, are unable to drill (Unfit for Work, Unfit for Duty respectively) you are most likely qualified to receive Incapacitation Pay. Commonly referred to as INCAP pay.

The Army's regulation that covers it is AR 135-381, and DA PAM 135-381. The Air Force has similar regulations, and they are based on Federal Law, so it applies to ALL branches.

If you are Unfit for Duty, you should qualify to receive Tier 1 pay, which is Full AD base pay (full time pay) plus BAH and BAQ, minus whatever other income you have.

If you are Unfit for Work, you should qualify to receive Tier 2 pay, which is whatever your lost civilian wages are, up to the amount of Tier 1 pay, minus whatever other income you have.

This is a safety net put into law to cover down on LOD injured SM's who are unable to work or perform their duties, so they are not left in a bind while being treated for the injuries and/or processed for a medical discharge. If you have never heard of it before, don't feel alone, the Guard and Reserves does a pretty good job of NOT getting the word out about it.

Hope this helps...
 

FloridaInjuredInCombat

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INCAP is a nightmare all it's own in many cases, with the unit and State putting out more misinformation than truth. First read your branches regulations and instructions pertaining to it. Then request it.

I hate to sound jaded about this, but expect to be stonewalled, summarily denied, lied to, and yelled at. Then HOLD THEM TO THE REGULATIONS.

I'm ARNG (at least I am for 4 more days until I am Medically Retired) but the regulations should be very similar. I have spent the last 18 months in a running gun battle with my State and NGB for INCAP, which for the most part I have been successful at 'eventually'. So if you have questions about anything, please post it on this thread which I'm tracking, or PM me. I'll try to help you as best I can.

Hope this helps...
 

19 years_service

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My commander told me that I was at the end of my extensions and had to fight to get me re enlisted so I can finish processing the PEB. The National Guard Medical unit fought to have me ETS and did not approve the extension or reenlistment until NGB got involved. They were not even going to give me the opportunity to apply for a regular retirement. I am now extended for 1 year.

MSA is such an incredible joke on the person who files a complaint. I never expected a 5 year battle for benefits. The impact of not being processed timely and be able to move on has turned what could have been a short term trauma into a one that has been prolonged.
 

FloridaInjuredInCombat

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PEB Forum Veteran
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My commander told me that I was at the end of my extensions and had to fight to get me re enlisted so I can finish processing the PEB. The National Guard Medical unit fought to have me ETS and did not approve the extension or reenlistment until NGB got involved. They were not even going to give me the opportunity to apply for a regular retirement. I am now extended for 1 year.

MSA is such an incredible joke on the person who files a complaint. I never expected a 5 year battle for benefits. The impact of not being processed timely and be able to move on has turned what could have been a short term trauma into a one that has been prolonged.
Glad you got your extension, I just finished my PEB stage, including a short time for a IPEB appeal (of about a week) and a VARR (which took about 3 months) and from start to finish that all took about 9 months to complete. Hopefully they will process yours quicker, most of that delay (for me at least) was waiting on the VA's ratings, since you already have those you should be in good shape.

My entire ARNG - SSMRB/MEB/PEB/and retirement took about 1 year 8 months. My unit has bragged on how fast I was processed compared to most, and I absolutely believe that had a lot to do with the fact I was drawing/fighting for INCAP pay. The State expedited my IDES process as much as they could to keep from paying any more INCAP than they had to. Food for thought if you want to rush things some, at least on the State/NGB side of the house.

As for the 5 year battle and the continued trauma, keep up the fight, but also keep it in perspective. Though it's easier said than done, step back from this nightmare and just do something else when you can. That could mean anything from spending quality time with your family to just taking the day to drive somewhere for the hell of it in such of the best burger you can. Step back, take a breath and find some perspective.

Hope this helps...
 

19 years_service

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I made it through the PEB with 70% combined for PTSD, MDD. The VA gave me 80% for PTSD, MDD, and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I received the separation order on 28 July.

The board also came back with foot conditions and multiple spinal conditions to include osteoarthritis. Standing for even 5 minutes hurts my feet and I have constant back pain and issues in bending. The PEB stated that the conditions are occupational, meaning me civilian job. I would think that they would be unfitting?

I am still waiting for the military technician (title 32 - civil service) termination notice so I can apply for the civil service retirement. I was told by A SMSgt in HRO that there is a meeting tomorrow. Wow, a meeting to produce a termination letter..... I would think it to be a routine part of some process.
 
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