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P. Simmons
P. Simmons, Military Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 27175
Experience:  Retired Marine Corps lawyer and Veterans Services Officer (VSO) with 12+ yrs. of experience.
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Son. Chapter 14-12c. 5 years in. Combat medic, MEB referred

Resolved Question:

Son. Chapter 14-12c. 5 years in. Combat medic, MEB referred to PEB
PTSD chronic. PEB in process. Govt made multiple errors. Separation papers without
Dual processed MEB/Chptr. Revoked and restarted. Captain attempted to
Discharge without including MEB.
We have submitted multiple responses asking for retention or PEB disability
But,...we have not yet submitted evidence that misconduct was directly
Related to impaired judgement secondary to oxycodone and Prozac prescribed for PTSD. Son confessed to misconduct after 2 weeks withdrawal because he
Was abruptly pulled off high dose Prozac when his Psych was suspended
He was suicide ideation thru to plan, I complained and he was sent
To Behav Health, put back on Prozac, but before first restart dose
Capt called him in to confess to urine adulteration,...which he did do during
The two day period that the psych added oxycodone to Prozac.
We haven't pulled out all stops because we were advised to remain humble and
Conciliatory to govt. but, the Army has really ruined my Sons life. Best action
At this late date?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Military Law
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for the chance to help. I am an attorney with over 12 years military law experience.

Where is this at in the process? Has a board been scheduled? Has it been held?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
PEB is in process. Chptr response submitted to General.
Signed the Chptr 3 different times before it was finally submitted as a dual process
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

Thank you

 

The chapter trumps...every time. So can you tell me, are the seeking an other than honorable discharge (requiring a board) or are they seeking a general discharge (no board required)?

 

 

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
General DC
The Army reg seems to indicate that when the misconduct can be tied to the disability then the Chptr will be dismissec
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

Thank you

 

One more...can you tell me the expiration date date for submission of written matters? (can your son still submit matters in writing to the separation authority)?

 

 

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Responses submitted yesterday
We will also respond to PEB, which we are told will be completed
In addition, we will send more communication through,...believe me, we will get more in front of BC if it might help
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.
Thanks...but was/is today the deadline for submissions (on the chapter)? Or does he have more time for submissions?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Deadline for response submission was yesterday
We responded with request for retention, based on Combat service, PTSD,strong rehabilitation and potential succes for further rehabilitation

Point; the adulterated sample action; Son took Percocet, Oxycodone and Prozac same day. He was protected under ASAP and had no need to adulterate.
Confessed in February to last December action,...during 2 weeks of suicidal ideation thru to plan( documented in MEB), was pulled off high dose Prozac by new Psych.....restarted same day as confession

I was advised by Command to not hire an attorney
Command refused to acknowledge attorney after 3 formal submissions of representation
Ordered Son to resign new Chptr twice without notifying his counsel
Produced separation same day as first response deadline to Chptr
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

Thank you

 

Can you tell me, what was the alleged misconduct?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Son (as I stated), confessed to adulteration of urine sample
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

ahhh....

 

sorry...I see that now.

 

As part of the package do you have a statement from his mental health professional that this conduct is tied to his PTSD?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No
I finally cornered our attorney yesterday and asked why that hadn't been done
He said have my Son talk to his Psych to get a memo noting that behavior was linked, along with impaired judgement secondary to Rx combination and withdrawal
Attorney has repeatedly refused to include this information. Has advised us to beg for consideration rather than assert anything else,...for months

Attorney stated Command intentionally attempted to DC without MEB dual process,....but, says Army fixed the error, so we can't assert anything about that either
Now,...I'm not sure how to get additional info up, other than to personally send it
Son to make Psych appt today to ask for memo

Should we assert the intent to DC without MEB inclusion?
How best to send up Psych memo? How best to make it help? Will it help?
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.
Thank you

That is a concern. Common symptoms of PTSD include paranoia and self medication. So the misconduct seems consistent with diagnosis....sure would be good to have a professional opinion for the separation authority

Most cases in the Army the Battalion Commander is the separation authority....but this can change. Do you know if this is the case for your son?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Recent responses were submitted to Lt General Brown. He will decide whether to Chptr out or accept pending PEB
For unfit for duty PTSD. The PEB will likely confirm and must then be at least 50%. But, the fight will be to decide to allow PEB over Chptr

I am terrified that we have allowed attorney to soft peddle rather than assert the facts
Now he says that we can submit letters again on completion of the PEB. I know that will be too late to do any good

MEB summary; axis 1 from PTSD is concurrent substance abuse secondary to PTSD.
Attorney is active reserve Jag. Afraid he maintained his good contacts at the expense of my Sons future
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

Thank you

 

I will need a few minutes to type this up....just a moment

Expert:  P. Simmons replied 1 year ago.

First and foremost I want to tell you that even if your son is chaptered, he still has care and compensation available from the veterans administration.

 

A general discharge will entitle him to most benefits

 

He will loose the GI Bill...but retains the ability to seek treatment and compensation (money) from the VA. It sounds like he will need both

 

Now, on to your question...what can you do now?

 

I would have submitted a letter from a doctor that links his PTSD to this misconduct.

 

That would be highly relevant

 

If today is the deadline? It may be too late. But that is one thing that could link the misconduct to the disability

 

I agee that the Army regulation that applies gives policy guidance that tells commanders that they should attempt to rehabilitate...and linking the PTSD, to the actions, through a mental health professional can help you argue that for policy reasons he should be retained.

 

Just understand that the separation authority has discretion...so they can decide needs of the unit require separation in this case...so it is all about convincing the separation authority to not separate.

 

If you can get a letter from his doctor, in the near future, I would have your lawyer or your son submit it. It can not hurt and may help.

 

Other than that? If today is the deadline for submission your options are limited. I agree...it sounds like your lawyer did a poor job....you can consider a malpractice claim against them.

 

And your son should file a claim with the VA...regardless of how he separates he needs to do this...sooner is better.

 

Please let me know if you have more questions

 

 

P. Simmons, Military Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 27175
Experience: Retired Marine Corps lawyer and Veterans Services Officer (VSO) with 12+ yrs. of experience.
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Retired Marine Corps lawyer and Veterans Services Officer (VSO) with 12+ yrs. of experience.