Your Initial C&P Exam
Upon exit from active duty, if you are suffering from a disability that was caused or worsened by your military service, you may be eligible for a disability compensation. To be eligible, you must apply, be honorably discharged, able to prove your condition and prove the service-connection.
The exam used by the VA to determine if you have service-connected disabilities is called a C&P exam (compensation and pension exam). In its most basic form, the C&P is just a doctor’s appointment where the doctor does NOT treat, diagnosis, or prescribe medicine.
If you are experiencing a psychological condition or disorder, you may be asked to complete some standard psychological tests.
If you are experiencing a physical condition or illness, the doctor may order lab work or perform medical tests that will give a well-rounded picture of your condition.
Things to remember:Download our C&P Exam Tips PDF HERE!
• If you are claiming more than one condition, verify which one the upcoming C&P exam will be evaluating. You want to be prepared for the right issue. Read about “8 Things to Expect at Your C&P Exam”.
• Most doctors will begin their exam by introducing themselves and then ask, “How are you?”. That majority of us are conditioned to reply with “Good” or “Okay”. This is NOT the appropriate response during this exam. Unfortunately, a simple reply like this may result in your claim being denied.
• You won’t have a lot of time to explain your claims. Come prepared to answer questions clearly and concisely. Know exactly how your condition is related to or was caused by your military service.
• Be able to provide specific examples on how your injury/illness/condition impacts your daily life including your work and personal relationships. Bringing a daily journal where you have tracked symptoms is beneficial.
For a physical issue, You want to include specific information about flare-ups and description of pain and any limitation of movement. If you are experiencing psychological symptoms, write down frequency and the impact on your daily life.
• Be honest. Most doctors can tell when people are lying or exaggerating. If you are caught in a lie, your claim will most likely be denied.
• Results will typically be: Favorable or Unfavorable. If your results were unfavorable, don’t wait to take action.
Download our guide on C&P exam tips here
Be on time
Answer questions based off of the worst moment
Only answer the questions asked
Be direct and to the point
Accurately and concisely answer questions
Talk about drugs and alcohol
Downplay your symptoms
Miss the appointment
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