2.5 based on 2 reviews


  1. KLS says:

    Today is a “clear” day to write this. As baffled as I was regarding the questions Judge Eric Eklund asked during the hearing at times, I felt comfortable giving him my truthful answers and that they would be received that way. The process because of volume can become rote and assumptive and foster skepticism. We all hope that doesn’t apply to our case. Unknown to me at the time of the hearing but shortly thereafter, the records used for review and basis of the questions were incorrect. I had been counseled not to ask any questions or provide comment or clarification. Mistakes are made, it’s human. I can only judge my decisions.

    I realized that misunderstandings, misinformation that cascade and go unquestioned or are not clarified are aids in expediency for all but the claimant. Working for over 4 decades, gaining 6 figure salary, saving and having no debt, activities and ongoing learning and are rendered useless against a tick bite.

    I realized that being proactive and seeking treatment to understand and counteract the abrupt ending of one’s lifestyle are moot points.

    I learned that activities that are carried from record to record as the “baselines from onset of chronic lyme symptoms” that they really are versus the assumption taken of actual current activities, until the error is discovered by claimant after the hearing and are subsequently corrected and clarified by doctors are missed or not weighted.

    That 21 plus years employed in a field that necessitated 24 x 7 coverage and daily attendance is said to be able to be performed now even though the medical records and adult function reports consistently indicate the inability to know day to day if one is capable of functioning. Functioning at 40% a few days a week is interpreted as the ability to perform past prior work.

    That attempting to find or create some kind of work on the “good” days that will fit with the day to day abilities and disability, to spend savings and retirement to support oneself, looking for a cure for chronic lyme and fibromyalgia rather than drugs so that the claimant can as they really wish to, return to full time work and past activity level rather being disabled and doped are detriments not assets.

    That not knowing exact retirement age via SSA is perfectly understandable to those who want to “retire” only when they are dead but becomes astounding to others.

    That having a member of the court who has known the claimant for decades and spoke to the drastic change since the tick bites in claimant is not weighted or regarded.

    This claimant did not wish, plan or hope to be disabled by multiple tick bites. This claimant had a lot of plans for the future that will not be realized. This claimant worked and saved rather than spend. This claimant paid taxes and insurance for over 4 decades and is being denied benefits.

    Since this is a “good” day, I am clear in being completely baffled and disappointed and depressed over the decision. I’m human. Everyone makes mistakes. My mistake was trust in truth. My peace is integrity.

  2. Paula says:

    It has been 6 years and 5 months since I filed for disability based on depression/anxiety/COPD. Judge Eklund was the person in charge of my hearing and decisions. To say I am disappointed in his interpretation of my case would be remiss. I’m still shocked that it took 3/4 of a decade to conclude and my only takeaway is that I am naïve in thinking the system fair. I knew I also took the risk of increasing my anxiety in the long haul and that has occurred swiftly.
    A remand to the VA. panel gave me hope because those occur in smaller percentages. Judge Eklund in court struck me as pleasant, thorough, and engaged in the process. In writing of the denial reports the first one included several incorrections that gave the connotation to actual issues. As example, the expert psychiatric witness report on my evaluation said I was of normal demeanor in person and omitted the breaking into tears portion when I was at a loss of words becoming emotional. The retention of short term memory was overlooked which is a credible hallmark of the anxiety at work in a learning or stress situation.
    The huge omission in the 2nd remand hearing was the complete disregard to my counselor of 5 years reporting the negative impact of employment stress. Yet high consideration was given to that 1 hour state psychiatrist shown above who misconstrued my demeanor as witnessed by my accompanying companion. This was followed by the conclusion of the hearing that I found very optimistic from the vocational expert. She stated in response to query that the small sector of jobs left when omitting physical demanding and environmental factored jobs that were options for me would not be stress free as recommended. The Judge did not include this experts opinion in the finding which was positive toward my case.
    He did not however factor into the last year where the Adminstration in VA. actually did not know I even appealed his findings.

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