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When to Request a Code 13 Review of Combat-related Navy PEB Finding v. Going to a Formal Hearing

What do you do if you are a Navy or Marine Corps member being processed through the IDES or legacy systems and disagree with your initial findings by the IPEB as to whether your injuries were combat-related?  There are two options- request a formal hearing before the FPEB to argue this point or waive the formal hearing and submit an appeal to Code 13, the Administrative Law Division of Navy OJAG.  If you are happy your IPEB findings except with respect to the combat-related nature of your injuries, then it may be wise to appeal through Code 13 if you have not consistently sought treatment for one or more of your unfitting conditions since your package was originally submitted to the PEB. Why?  Because an FPEB is a de novo hearing and they might you fit for one or more conditions that are not being actively treated.  The Code 13 review request is simply a written request accompanied by any medical or nonmedical evidence showing that your injuries were incurred in combat or while performing ultrahazardous duties- i.e. diving, parachuting, etc.  Code 13 reviewers can only grant or deny your request but cannot change your findings with respect to unfitting conditions.  It is not a perfect process, but it is safe.

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