Medical Retirement after Discharge from AD Service

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#1
Greetings! I am new to this site and I found it by mere luck. And I am glad I did !... I have some questions in which I hope some folks with more experience in this matter can help me with some pointers. For that I want to provide with some background about me:

I was a commissioned officer, O3E with 16 years of Active Duty and 3 1/2 years of RC time. I did two combat tours in Iraq, in 2005, 4th Inf Div (Taji) and in 2008 18th ABNC (Baghdad). While deployed I went through divorce and I sought mental health help from the Combat Stress Team, which didn't help at all. I was prescribed antidepressants for the reminder of the deployment time.

I returned in 2009 and I was doing well in recruiting until I made a really bad lapse of judgement. In 2010 I had a run in with the law and I was arrested and I was facing prison time in a civilian court of law. I attempted to commit suicide and the Command directed me to psych evaluation. In May 2011 I went through the process of medical screening and evaluation and I was diagnosed with Chronic PTSD and other mental health issues by a qualified Military Psych Doctor. My GAF score was 51, near the "severe" threshold. In July 2011 I faced the Board of Inquiry and I was separated from the service with an OTH Discharge. In 2012 I attempted again to commit suicide again. After that second attempt, I went to the VA to seek help. I was diagnosed, surprise surprise, with Chronic PTSD, and all the other maladies that comes with that diagnosis. Currently I am rated at 100% TDIU with the VA and 100% Social Security.

My question is, the Command was kept aware of the mental health condition as shown in my records. Instead of requesting an MEB they rather went the easy route to separate from the service with the Board of Inquiry, probably because of a flag???.

Based on the fact that I was diagnosed with PTSD while on Active Duty, what I can do to request to have a review of those records with the goal to revert it to Medically Retired.

Based on your opinion, do I stand a chance of success?

Would the 10 US Code Section 1553 be applicable?

Any input will be greatly appreciated...

Thanks in advance....
 

Keebs

Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
#2
Hello!

BCMR is your best bet. PDBR wouldn't help you since it doesn't seem that you were med boarded from what you have said so they can't re-rate a disability they didn't rate to begin with.

When you apply you need to send in as much paperwork as possible. Statements from family, friends, co-workers, and bosses. Medical documentation will be very important as well. Some have been successful going through BCMR to receive a medical retirement, but some have not been.

Good luck and I hope this information helped!
 

gsfowler

Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
#3
You have nothing to lose by appealing to the BCMR. The only real barrier to success (based upon what you posted) was that you had a really bad lapse in judgement "In 2010 I had a run in with the law and I was arrested and I was facing prison time in a civilian court of law."

You will need to tie your service connected PTSD to your lapse in judgment. A good lawyer can make the argument for you.
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#4
Thank you folks !! Your inputs are greatly appreciated. With the information both of you provided, I dug a little deeper and found a good lawyer that is willing to take my case. I don't know if anyone here had any experience with Mr William E. Cassara...but if someone knows please let me know about your experience, since this is the lawyer I hired.

I had to send him a copy of my Board of Inquiry papers and some of my mental health evaluations done when I was on Active Duty. I know that there is much more to it and this is only the beginning but I wasn't even sure that this type of action was possible. I always thought that you could only request to have a discharge upgraded and that's it. And boy I was wrong. Should I have known sooner I would have taken action earlier.

From the medical standpoint, I would like to think that I have a very solid argument regarding connecting the PTSD to the lapse of judgement. So much took place between deployments to the point of separation.

My evaluations and all the mental health care are pretty well grounded. I can't even begin to mention the battery of mental health tests, psychiatric evaluations and appointments and so on. Too many of them plus two unsuccessful suicide attempts on top of it.

VA already service connected with 100% as well as the Social Security without any issues whatsoever.

But I have always felt that something was missing and I think is that I want to bring a final, dignified closure to an otherwise exemplary career.

Again folks, thank you so much for your information...indeed it helped me to make a decision.....
 

Raas32

PEB Forum Regular Member
#5
Greetings! I am new to this site and I found it by mere luck. And I am glad I did !... I have some questions in which I hope some folks with more experience in this matter can help me with some pointers. For that I want to provide with some background about me:

I was a commissioned officer, O3E with 16 years of Active Duty and 3 1/2 years of RC time. I did two combat tours in Iraq, in 2005, 4th Inf Div (Taji) and in 2008 18th ABNC (Baghdad). While deployed I went through divorce and I sought mental health help from the Combat Stress Team, which didn't help at all. I was prescribed antidepressants for the reminder of the deployment time.

I returned in 2009 and I was doing well in recruiting until I made a really bad lapse of judgement. In 2010 I had a run in with the law and I was arrested and I was facing prison time in a civilian court of law. I attempted to commit suicide and the Command directed me to psych evaluation. In May 2011 I went through the process of medical screening and evaluation and I was diagnosed with Chronic PTSD and other mental health issues by a qualified Military Psych Doctor. My GAF score was 51, near the "severe" threshold. In July 2011 I faced the Board of Inquiry and I was separated from the service with an OTH Discharge. In 2012 I attempted again to commit suicide again. After that second attempt, I went to the VA to seek help. I was diagnosed, surprise surprise, with Chronic PTSD, and all the other maladies that comes with that diagnosis. Currently I am rated at 100% TDIU with the VA and 100% Social Security.

My question is, the Command was kept aware of the mental health condition as shown in my records. Instead of requesting an MEB they rather went the easy route to separate from the service with the Board of Inquiry, probably because of a flag???.

Based on the fact that I was diagnosed with PTSD while on Active Duty, what I can do to request to have a review of those records with the goal to revert it to Medically Retired.

Based on your opinion, do I stand a chance of success?

Would the 10 US Code Section 1553 be applicable?

Any input will be greatly appreciated...

Thanks in advance....
Glad you're still here with us today. Check out my post regarding BCRM. My situation is very similar to yours. I was administratively separated from the Air Force with "adjustment disorder." Immediately upon separating I was diagnosed by the VA with Bi-Polar Disorder. I appealed to the BCMR arguing that I had Bi-Polar as a result of active duty and my medical records should be corrected to show retirement. I won that case. If you have questions, please message me. I am happy to share my experience.
 

Tanko

Registered Member
#6
Glad you're still here with us today. Check out my post regarding BCRM. My situation is very similar to yours. I was administratively separated from the Air Force with "adjustment disorder." Immediately upon separating I was diagnosed by the VA with Bi-Polar Disorder. I appealed to the BCMR arguing that I had Bi-Polar as a result of active duty and my medical records should be corrected to show retirement. I won that case. If you have questions, please message me. I am happy to share my experience.
Hi, i currently have similar case in final stages abcmr, my question is, what was their explanation for changing the adjustment disorder dicharge to medical retirement, what evidence/ argument did send, i would like to know the rational behind their decision, thanks.
 

Clarkj

Registered Member
#7
Glad you're still here with us today. Check out my post regarding BCRM. My situation is very similar to yours. I was administratively separated from the Air Force with "adjustment disorder." Immediately upon separating I was diagnosed by the VA with Bi-Polar Disorder. I appealed to the BCMR arguing that I had Bi-Polar as a result of active duty and my medical records should be corrected to show retirement. I won that case. If you have questions, please message me. I am happy to share my experience.
My question is also, what was their explanation for changing the adjustment disorder dicharge to medical retirement, what evidence/ argument did send, i would like to know the rationalbehind their decision, thanks.
 

Clarkj

Registered Member
#8
I am currently about to start thos same in devour. Served 13.8 years and was honorably discharged due to not able to keep military standards. I am 90% disabled with 40% of that comming from Sleep Apnea and the remainder from 10% here 10% there. What do you argue to make it count? Do I ague the point that I should have been med boarded or that the government sais I need to park close to building to walk only 30 feet and the military wants me to run a test? Thank you in advance.
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#9
I am currently about to start thos same in devour. Served 13.8 years and was honorably discharged due to not able to keep military standards. I am 90% disabled with 40% of that comming from Sleep Apnea and the remainder from 10% here 10% there. What do you argue to make it count? Do I ague the point that I should have been med boarded or that the government sais I need to park close to building to walk only 30 feet and the military wants me to run a test? Thank you in advance.
My best suggestion is to hire a good, competent lawyer who can actually look at your entire record and be able to put in writing a strong litigation on your behalf.

I said that because when I hired my lawyer, the ideas I had in my head about how to proceed or argue completely changed after I read the first draft of my document. I put it this way, it is one thing if you have an invasive back surgery and feel all the pains associated with it....however..your perspective of the surgery changes if you see a video of your own surgery, and see how the doctors split open your back and perform the operation. Your perspective about the back surgery changes based on what you witnessed.

It is the same in this case. A good lawyer would know exactly what are the relevant points to argue.
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#10
Glad you're still here with us today. Check out my post regarding BCRM. My situation is very similar to yours. I was administratively separated from the Air Force with "adjustment disorder." Immediately upon separating I was diagnosed by the VA with Bi-Polar Disorder. I appealed to the BCMR arguing that I had Bi-Polar as a result of active duty and my medical records should be corrected to show retirement. I won that case. If you have questions, please message me. I am happy to share my experience.
Glad you're still here with us today. Check out my post regarding BCRM. My situation is very similar to yours. I was administratively separated from the Air Force with "adjustment disorder." Immediately upon separating I was diagnosed by the VA with Bi-Polar Disorder. I appealed to the BCMR arguing that I had Bi-Polar as a result of active duty and my medical records should be corrected to show retirement. I won that case. If you have questions, please message me. I am happy to share my experience.

This would be my question to you..did you had a "separation physical exam" before you left the service?....I ask because that is going to be our contention. I never got a final physical exam, the Air Force Clinic I was seeing (I was in the Army but Mac Dill AFB was the closest base) placed me on 90 days "Code 31" which is a precursor to a MED, and I was diagnosed with PTSD with "full panoply of Cardinal PTSD. In addition, I have numerous documents of physical exams where I always claimed anxiety, depression, sleep deprivation and other maladies.

However, by many regulations and the 10 US Code 1177, the Army shouldn't discharge me without taking in consideration the PTSD diagnosis while I was still on Active Duty. The decision had to be up to the Secretary of Army, but yet, the USAREC brass decided to kick me out.
 

AaronJM1984

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#11
Personally I am curious as to the type of "lapse of judgement"...I assume that it's your personal business and you do not wish to disclose that information but I firmly believe as well that if someone gets into serious trouble, then the consequences should be OTH, whether that service member has PTSD or not. Again this is just my 2 cents, but I would question whether I should get medical retired based off of what my actions were. Like I said, this is just my opinion. I may be off in left field right now. Take care.
 

ANSU07

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#12
Another approach I would recommend to your lawyer concerning the OTH discharge is that anti-depressants are known to be dis-inhibiting and can cause people to act outside of their nature and without sound judgment (they certainly did that to me and cost me my career). I would highly recommend you look into some of the testimony given by Dr. Peter Breggin. He's a psychiatrist that serves as an expert witness on many cases involving suicide/homicide/other felonies where psychotropics are involved. Most of these cases are settled by pharma companies and sealed since the science is in on the dangers of anti-depressants. The most recent case he participated in was the one where the teenager in Massachusetts (I think) was pushing her boyfriend to commit suicide over text. Both of the were on antidepressants and she was on trial for manslaughter I believe.

I can't see how you would lose your attempt at medical retirement given the circumstances.
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#13
Personally I am curious as to the type of "lapse of judgement"...I assume that it's your personal business and you do not wish to disclose that information but I firmly believe as well that if someone gets into serious trouble, then the consequences should be OTH, whether that service member has PTSD or not. Again this is just my 2 cents, but I would question whether I should get medical retired based off of what my actions were. Like I said, this is just my opinion. I may be off in left field right now. Take care.
I agree that is a personal business and I will not discuss it on a public forum.

Respectfully, let me just say that you don't have all the facts regarding my case and you can't judge whether or not I should receive medical retirement because in your mind, if a person committed an act that could/would end up with an OTH, then that person should not receive medical retirement. There is certainly reasons or catalysts that propels an individual to snap and make a mistake. And I did that. And if you don't think that two combat tours can make you snap, that I don't know what would.

And again, I will not discuss the details on a public forum.
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#14
This would be my question to you..did you had a "separation physical exam" before you left the service?....I ask because that is going to be our contention. I never got a final physical exam, the Air Force Clinic I was seeing (I was in the Army but Mac Dill AFB was the closest base) placed me on 90 days "Code 31" which is a precursor to a MED, and I was diagnosed with PTSD with "full panoply of Cardinal PTSD. In addition, I have numerous documents of physical exams where I always claimed anxiety, depression, sleep deprivation and other maladies.

However, by many regulations and the 10 US Code 1177, the Army shouldn't discharge me without taking in consideration the PTSD diagnosis while I was still on Active Duty. The decision had to be up to the Secretary of Army, but yet, the USAREC brass decided to kick me out.

No, I never went through the separation physical exam. And yes, anyone could contend that it was my responsibility to go through the physical, however, there are regulations that mandates unit commanders to ensure that their subordinates successfully attends and complete the physical exam.
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#15
I am currently about to start thos same in devour. Served 13.8 years and was honorably discharged due to not able to keep military standards. I am 90% disabled with 40% of that comming from Sleep Apnea and the remainder from 10% here 10% there. What do you argue to make it count? Do I ague the point that I should have been med boarded or that the government sais I need to park close to building to walk only 30 feet and the military wants me to run a test? Thank you in advance.

The argument varies based on your personal situation. I hired a good lawyer who did the legwork for me. Wasn't cheap but it was worth it.

I guess the strongest points is when you were discharge. Because you have statutes of limitations that if they expired, the severity of your conditions won't mean much because you can't litigate that in court. Also, what was diagnosed while you were in AD.

Like for me, I argued that I was diagnosed with PTSD WHILE on Active Duty and the Army failed to send me through the DES in accordance to 10 US Code and many Army regulations and DoD directives. What the Army should have done was to do a dual action, separation and DES at the same time and let the Secretary of the Army to decide which one was the best course of action. But that didn't happened. And many other things that should have happened never did.
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#16
Federal Court of Claims Case Update:

08/03/2017 1 COMPLAINT against USA (ARMY) (Filing fee $400, Receipt number CFC********) (Copy Served Electronically on Department of Justice), filed by DEFENDANT. Answer due by 10/2/2017.(ew) (Entered: 08/03/2017)

08/03/2017 2 NOTICE of Assignment to Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby. (ew) (Entered: 08/03/2017)

08/03/2017 3 NOTICE of Designation of Electronic Case. (ew) (Entered: 08/03/2017)

08/18/2017 4 NOTICE of Appearance by Michael Damien Snyder for USA . (Snyder, Michael) (Entered: 08/18/2017)

09/14/2017 5 Consent MOTION for Extension of Time until 12/1/2017 to File Answer re 1 Complaint , filed by USA.Response due by 9/28/2017.(Snyder, Michael) (Entered: 09/14/2017)

09/15/2017 6 ORDER granting 5 Motion for Extension of Time to Answer. Answer or Response due by 12/1/2017. Signed by Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby. (atw) Copy to parties. (Entered: 09/15/2017)
 

coshana

Registered Member
#18
Floridaman1398-Hi, I was medboarded out of MacDill AFB. Can you pm (message) me what lawyer you used and the costs associated (can be approx). I check three and 1/3 hasn't even respond to my inquiry, 2/3 say they don't go direct to military boards any more because they either (said it was too much work or are working on unemployable veterans claims only instead).
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#19
Floridaman1398-Hi, I was medboarded out of MacDill AFB. Can you pm (message) me what lawyer you used and the costs associated (can be approx). I check three and 1/3 hasn't even respond to my inquiry, 2/3 say they don't go direct to military boards any more because they either (said it was too much work or are working on unemployable veterans claims only instead).
In response to your questions as it pertains to the cost, it was $6,000 plus $400 for filling fee to the Federal Court of Claims. Keep in mind, this was a filling to the Federal Court of Claims. If you are filling to your service component BCMR, the cost may different, could be more or could be less, I can't tell you.

For me, the important aspect is that if I look back ten years from now, I want to say that at least I tried everything I could.

The most important advice I would give you is to ensure you have all the medical, military and VA records at hand and be very familiar with them. It makes things a lot easier and faster.

The Lawyer information is as follows:

William E. Cassara P.C.
Lawyer in the Columbia County, Georgia
Address: Evans, GA
Phone: (706) 860-5769
Website:
https://courtmartial.com/
Email:

[email protected]
 

floridaman1398

Registered Member
#20
Hi, i currently have similar case in final stages abcmr, my question is, what was their explanation for changing the adjustment disorder dicharge to medical retirement, what evidence/ argument did send, i would like to know the rational behind their decision, thanks.

Greetings!

What is your status of your application?....was it granted, denied? ...
 
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