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December 21, 2018

What to Do if You Get a BAD C&P Exam

Last updated on May 8, 2024

I hope you enjoy reading this blog post.

If you want to learn how to implement these strategies to get the VA benefits you deserve, click here to speak with a VA claim expert for free.

Bad C&P examiners should NOT be allowed to conduct C&P exams. Period.

My fellow veterans, we must punch back!

In this video, I break down everything you need to know about the Compensation and Pension (C&P) exam. You’ll also learn what to do if you get a *BAD* C&P exam or *BAD* C&P, examiner.

This video training is specific to Veterans who want to learn about the C&P exam.

Whether you weren’t prepared for the exam or your examiner was terrible, there are some steps you must take immediately to protect yourself. We do not want this to happen to you! Since the doctors who perform these exams can just sign up, you must do something if you get a bad one.

What is a C&P Exam?

C&P stands for a Compensation and Pension exam. This is an in-person exam, and if it is not in person, there is a HUGE problem. The process to get your exam begins after you submit your claim. You will be contacted by a VA accredited doctor to complete your exam. 

Why C&P exams?

After you submit your claim, there needs to be an independent doctor to confirm your diagnosis. These doctors can be the ones to connect your NEXUS and find out the severity of symptoms. Your C&P examiner will be trying to find out questions like

  1. Confirming your medical diagnosis
  2. When did your symptoms begin
  3. Are your symptoms something that was made worse with service or something that happened in service
  4. How severe are your symptoms now
  5. And are you telling the truth

Remember, do not ever lie or stretch the truth in your C&P exam. It is illegal and immoral.

Exam Tips

Know what is in your medical record.

If you have a DBQ, review it. See what they wrote and know what the doctor said

Review the eCFR, Title 38, Part 4, the Schedule for Rating Disabilities. This is your right to know the ratings, and there is a full workup of what the disability ratings are. 

Don’t have your best day; be uncomfortably vulnerable and tell them how you feel on your worst days. This is valuable information that your examiner needs to know. However, they won’t know unless you tell them!

If you are filling for musculoskeletal conditions 1 pain 2 range of motion, your rating comes down to your range of motion. These include headaches, shoulders, knees, etc., where your examiner will complete a range of motion test. If you can’t do it, DON’T DO IT

For mental health, occupational and social impairment claim, your rater is looking to see how bad is your condition limiting your life.

Know your story! This is one of the most significant and straightforward pieces of advice we can give you. Know what your in-service stressors are and be able to tell the examiner.

Mistakes Examiners Make

  • Some just don’t know what they are doing
  • Have a personal agenda against military or veterans
  • Could not be trained to conduct the exam properly
  • Didn’t perform an appropriate exam
  • “Pencil-whipped” the exam, conducts a 5-minute exam but still getting paid for an hour exam aka working to get their fee in very little time
  • Made a mistake or didn’t complete all info when completing online DBQ
  • They do not realize just how important the C&P exam notes are to you

What to Do if You Get a Lousy Exam

Immediately call 1-800-827-1000 to speak to a VA representative. You will get in touch with someone and ask them to make a note on your record about what your examiner did wrong.

We see this all the time, and we call the VA helpline frequently as well. Ask to talk to the VA office in your state and request a new C&P exam for your back pain, sleep apnea, etc.

Write a Memorandum for Record (MFR). This is a one to two-page document where you can document the facts from your C&P exam. Include who, what, where, when, why, how, and upload it to E-benefits immediately. Make sure to include the doctor’s name on it and what happened in your exam.

Consider writing your state congressman and filing a congressional. If you do this, make sure you mean it, and you are not just doing this because you are mad.

How to Get Copies of Your C&P Exam

Log into My HealtheVet and download a copy of your outpatient medical exam

If your exam was not completed through the VA, you must either get a complete copy of your C-File

Make a written request to the VA Regional Office in your state

Or you can call the VA helpline, 1-800-827-1000

Real Examples of Bad C&P Exams

Over the years, our team has seen a lot of bad results from these C&P exams, and these are a couple of examples. If you are unsure if you received a bad exam but your results look anything like these, you absolutely did!

“Veteran not in combat and is malingering [lying]…”

After failing to conduct a Range of Motion test, the examiner wrote, “Veteran has full flexion and no limitation of range of motion…”

The examiner conducted a Sleep Apnea exam over the phone and wrote, “Veteran is obese, and sleep apnea is not likely due to service.” This exam was done by a nurse practitioner who failed to talk about the fact that the Veteran had nose and tonsil surgery in service. However, this Veteran took our three steps, got a new examiner, and was rated at 50% for Sleep Apnea with a CPAP machine.

“Veteran does not have plantar fasciitis…” There is no test to say that someone does not have plantar fasciitis. The only thing that they can do is take tests and X-rays.

What to do right now

Share this post and video with our fellow Vets! We must push back against illegal, immoral, and unethical C&P examiners and want others to be educated.

Consider making a formal complaint.

Consider writing an online review about the doctor if you received an inadequate exam. Get the doctor’s name and contact information before you leave the exam.

We have a team of medical professionals working to help you connect your service and disability. Our team is almost all Veterans, and we have dedicated our lives to helping you. If this sounds like you, then complete our FREE three-step intake form.


Take advantage of a FREE VA Claim Discovery Call with an experienced Team Member. Learn what you’ve been missing so you can FINALLY get the disability rating and compensation you’ve earned for your service.

About the Author

About VA Claims Insider

VA Claims Insider is an education-based coaching/consulting company. We’re here for disabled veterans exploring eligibility for increased VA disability benefits and who wish to learn more about that process. We also connect veterans with independent medical professionals in our referral network for medical examinations, disability evaluations, and credible independent medical opinions and nexus statements (medical nexus letters) for a wide range of disability conditions.

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