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Veterans – Why You Need A Vocational Expert For Your VA Individual Unemployability Claim

Tucker Law Group
March 27, 2017

Listen as John V. Tucker explains why you need a vocational expert for your 100% VA disability claim.

If you’re a veteran who wants to make a claim for a 100% disability, then you might benefit from hiring a vocational expert.

Individual unemployability is a way that vets can get paid 100% even though your rating may be lower for specific disabilities. They call this an extra-scheduler disability, and it can help you get paid 100% because you have service-connected disabilities that prevent you from working.

I had a client that with a significant arm injury that gave him a lot of pain and limited motion. It prevented him from working. The VA did not agree, and as such only paid him 70%. He had a pending claim for individual unemployability when he sought my services.

We hired a vocational expert. A vocational expert is someone who is trained in figuring out the best type of work for individuals and in determining whether they can work. They analyze medical records, work history and education to determine someone’s ability to work. They may cost some money, but in the end they are worth it. Let me explain why.

In my client’s case the insurance company hired a C&P doctor who claimed that my client could do sitting work. The VA denied his claim because of what their C&P doctor said. C&P doctors are paid by the VA, and they are not your friend. Hiring a vocational expert will help you to refute them. I can’t tell you that hiring a vocational expert will immediately change the VA’s mind, because there are a lot of hoops to go through. However, it is worth it. My client ended up winning $300,000 in back pay benefits as a result of hiring a vocational expert for a small fraction of that amount. Watch the video to learn more.

Are you a veteran that cannot work because of your VA service-connected disabilities (or conditions that should be service-connected)?  You should consider filing a claim for Total Disability Based on Individual Unemployability (TDIU) and hiring a vocational expert to support your claim.  TDIU is a way to get paid at the 100% level, even if your conditions are not rated that high. Listen to the following video as VA Disability Attorney John V. Tucker explains why you need a vocational expert for your 100% VA TDIU disability claim and how spending a little to hire an expert can get the VA to pay you thousands of dollars.

Click here for other TDIU resources.

If you have questions about why you should hire a vocational expert for your VA claim, call TDIU Attorney John Tucker at (866) 233-5044. The call is toll free nationwide.  You may also contact us online.

Video Transcript
You’re a veteran, you can't work because of your service-connected disabilities and you want to make a claim for individual unemployability to get 100% from the VA. Let me tell you how one of my clients spent $700 in his individual unemployability claim and that turned into almost $300,000 of past-due benefits. I'm John Tucker, I'm a VA disability attorney and I handle cases from Florida to Alaska. I represented vets just like you nationwide in individual unemployability claims.

Individual unemployability is a way to get paid 100% even though your ratings may be lower for specific disabilities that the VA has rated under their schedules. It's called extra scheduler total disability and it's something that can help you get 100% payment every month just because of your service-connected disabilities preventing you from working.

Now, my client, Jeff had a very significant injury to his arm and it prevented him from working he had significant pain and limited motion and he wasn't able to do any type of a job even though he tried. The VA, of course, said we don't think you're disabled from working and refused to pay him more than 70%. He had a claim for individual unemployability pending and he hired me to assist him.

We hired a vocational expert. That is somebody training vocational rehabilitation who analyzes medical records, work history, education and puts it all together with an opinion that explains why somebody can or can't work. In Jeff's case, the experts report costing around $700. Some might be a little more some might be a little less, that's not an uncommon amount. $700 may sound like a lot of money but let me tell you what happened.

In Jeff's case, they sent him to a compensation and pension examiner a C&P doctor. That C&P doctor said that Jeff could do sitting work and they denied his claim based on their doctor. The problem is the C&P not only are they not trained to give that opinion, they are never your friend. Don't rely on examination the VA wants to send you to.

You need your own expert to give an opinion in addition to your doctors about what you can and can't do. The vocational rehabilitation expert can do that for you in Jeff’s case we had to fight for a long time. I'm not going to tell you the VA is going to change their mind instantly because you sending that vocational report. We had to go through the board, up to the veterans court in Washington DC and then back to the board.

What happened in the end the board actually quoted the vocational expert when they agreed that Jeff was entitled to individual unemployability. Jeff ended up getting almost $300,000 in past due benefits all because we spent that $700 on the vocational expert. It's money well-spent.

If you want to talk about your claim for individual unemployability and how a vocational expert might help you, pick up the phone and call the number on your screen. I represent Vets like you everyday I'm John Tucker. Thanks for watching.