I came across your website and I have a question for you.
I was just recently awarded 100 percent service connection for PTSD with proposed financial incompetency and this really scares me because I don't quite know what they mean.
It sounds like there saying I can't handle my money. Even with all my disabilities I still find time to pay my bills alright. Can you please shed some light on this as to what I might be able to do to stop this before it happens. This is all the money we have to live on. They decided my claim June 1st 2013.
I get an email like yours almost every day. You've been caught in the trap of the most mismanaged and corrupt program that VA has to offer.
The VA fiduciary appointment program is abusive and full of illegitimate activity that steals money from veterans. This is not conjecture or rumor, this is a fact documented by many cases as they wind their way into the higher courts.
VA has been ordered by the courts to straighten this out and what they've done is to more or less do nothing more than re-arrange the deck chairs. They've created new departments and shuffled around leaders and employees but nothing has changed on the ground.
You were probably asked at some point (usually during a C & P exam), "Who handles the money in your household?" If you gave any sort of a casual answer like, "Oh, my wife takes care of bills and writes all the checks", the examiner is likely to report that you are incompetent to manage your own money. It doesn't matter to VA that in most American households a single person (often the wife) pays the bills. VA asks the trick questions to trap you with your nonchalant answer and then you're caught in their web.
Until a couple of years ago, VA even said that you had no rights to appeal! The VA said that veterans did not have the right to due process of the law as all other American citizens have. Some hard working and dedicated veterans law attorneys took VA into federal court and changed that. Even though you were the one who laid your life on the line to fight for the rights of due process under the law, VA insisted that you did not have the rights afforded to non-veteran citizens.
Today, because of these lawyers, veterans who are targeted by the VA fiduciary program are allowed to appeal.
So...you must appeal. To appeal is a very formal process and you must do it in a very formal manner. It isn't hard to do for yourself. The fact is that in most cases, you have to do it yourself as there are very few people who can help you.
I've provided veterans who, like you, are caught in the trap set by VA with detailed instructions on how to initiate the appeal. It's really pretty simple...you write a brief letter and send it in via certified mail. Once you do that, it throws a monkey wrench into the VA system and they must review your case and more or less start all over again. This will give you the opportunity to set the record straight and to show VA that you are capable of managing your own money.
I found a case this week that demonstrates just how abusive the VA fiduciary system can be. The VA has tangled this one up to a point that it appears that even the deciding judge didn't know what to do with it. The decision is clearly not in favor of the veteran. VA used twists and turns in the complex laws that govern these things to prevail.
This is a case where the veteran is guilty until proven innocent...just as VA likes it. The decision sends the message to VA appointed fiduciaries that they are allowed to abuse the veteran and take his/her money and there is no punishment for such an abuse. How the judge came to that conclusion is a mystery wrapped in the complex language of law. No matter, the decision is so clearly anti-veteran that it begs the question of why a veteran should bother to rely on the legal system.
You may review this outrageous decision for yourself by clicking here...
For now, you should read my page on the VA fiduciary system here...
Don't waste any time...get your appeal in as soon as possible.