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How Much Is Va Disability Pay

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Calculating Multiple Va Disability Ratings

Increased VA Disability Compensation in 2021 | theSITREP

Multiple disability ratings are a little tricky to calculate and are beyond the scope of this article. But well give a brief overview. In short, the VA uses a special method for calculating multiple disabilities.

Here is a simplified example:

Example: If you have a 30% disability rating, the VA would multiply that against 100%, which is assumed to be good health. This gives you 30%. Subtract that from 100% which leaves you with 70% . Then subtract 70% from 100% and you are left with 30%. If that is your only disability, then your final VA Service-Connected Disability Rating is 30%.

If you have multiple ratings, you continue with the process, using your final number each time as your starting point. Continuing with our example, if your next rating is 10%, you would multiply 10% against 70%, which is 7%. You subtract that from 70%, which leaves you with 63%. Subtract 63% from 100% and you get 37%. Your disability rating is 37%, which rounds up to 40%.

It can get complicated quickly, so I have an in-depth article and podcast that explain how the VA calculates combined disability ratings. I highly recommend reading and/or listening to get a good idea of how the process works!

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Disabled Veterans And Caregivers To Gain Access To Exchanges Commissaries And Recreation Facilities

About Ryan Guina

Ryan Guina is the founder and editor of The Military Wallet. He is a writer, small business owner, and entrepreneur. He served over 6 years on active duty in the USAF and is a current member of the IL Air National Guard.

Ryan started The Military Wallet in 2007 after separating from active duty military service and has been writing about financial, small business, and military benefits topics since then. He also writes about personal finance and investing at Cash Money Life.

Ryan uses Personal Capital to track and manage his finances. Personal Capital is a free software program that allows him to track his net worth, balance his investment portfolio, track his income and expenses, and much more. You can open a free Personal Capital account here.

Featured In: Ryan’s writing has been featured in the following publications: Forbes,, US News & World Report, Yahoo Finance, Reserve & National Guard Magazine , Military Influencer Magazine, Cash Money Life, The Military Guide, USAA, Go Banking Rates, and many other publications.

Veteran Disability Compensation Benefits Information

Veteran disability compensation is a tax-free benefit paid to a veteran for disabilities that are a result of or made worse by injuries or diseases that happened while on active duty, active duty for training, or certain inactive duty training.

Disability compensation is also paid to certain Veterans disabled from VA health care.

If the VA finds that you are disabled due to service-connected conditions, you will receive a disability rating. Depending upon your rating, you may be eligible for additional benefits:

  • Priority Medical Care
  • Grants for Specially Adapted Housing
  • Automobile Grant & Adaptive Equipment
  • Military Exchange & Commissary Privileges

Recommended Reading: How Do I Change My Veterans Disability Direct Deposit

Agent Orange And The Vietnam War Connection

During the Vietnam War, the U.S. military used a variety of herbicides to clear forests in Vietnam, including the dreaded Agent Orange. The ongoing use of the toxic chemical meant that many U.S. service members were exposed to it regularly.

After the war, many of the troops who were exposed to the chemical started to suffer from similar health issues. It was not until later that the U.S. Army realized the potency of the product and discovered the direct link between Agent Orange and the debilitating sickness that many Vietnam War vets were mysteriously experiencing.

Who Are Blue Water Navy Veterans

How much does VA pay for Veterans Disability Compensation?

Veterans who served on open sea ships off the shore of Vietnam during the Vietnam War are referred to as Blue Water Navy Veterans. There are an estimated 50,000 to 90,000 such veterans.

Prior to 2019, Blue Water Navy Veterans were not presumed to have been exposed to Agent Orange and therefore had a much more difficult process in proving up disability claims than veterans who had been deployed on the ground in Vietnam. After extensive research and lobbying, however, Congress finally extended the presumption of Agent Orange service connection to Blue Water Navy Veterans.

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How To Apply For Va Disability Compensation

First, obtain your DD 214. Then fill out VA Form 21-526, Veterans Application for Compensation and/or Pension. Once you have completed it, mail it to the following address:

Department of Veterans Affairs

PO Box 4444

You can also apply online using VONAPP, or bring the form in-person to a Veterans Administration regional center near you.

If youre originating a new claim, be prepared to furnish your DD-214, and allow the Veterans Administration access to your medical records as well as your military records.

You dont have to submit supporting evidence right away in order to apply, but you may have to submit to a medical exam. Once you start a VA disability compensation claim, you have up to one year to submit supporting evidence.

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A Higher Disability Rating Means More Monthly Compensation

VA awards disability compensation on a sliding scale. To determine your level of benefits, the VA assigns you an impairment rating from 0% to 100%. This rating signifies the severity of your condition higher ratings correspond to higher compensation.

To determine your disability rating, VA uses the following criteria:

Veterans diagnosed with social anxiety receive VA impairment ratings of 0%, 10%, 30%, 50%, 70%, or 100%. As of 2019, the monthly compensation for each of these ratings is:

  • 0% rating: $0 per month
  • 10% rating: $140.05 per month
  • 30% rating: $428.83 per month
  • 50% rating: $879.36 per month
  • 70% rating: $1,403.71 per month
  • 100% rating: $3,057.13 per month

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Lieutenant Colonel Us Army

Patricia Jackson-Kelley is a veteran of the United States Air Force and Air Force, Army and Navy Reserve. She retired with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel after 26 years of combined active duty and reserve service. Lt. Col. Jackson-Kelley served as the Program Manager for a 40-bed substance abuse ward and as the Women Veteran Program Manager with the Department of Veterans AffairsWest Los Angeles. During her employment, she was instrumental in implementing programs, funds and resources for women veterans. During her time at the Veterans Hospital, she also served as one of the initial board members during the formation of U.S. VETS. Currently she serves on the Foundation for Women Warriors board of directors, is a County of Los Angeles Commissioner for Military and Veteran Affairs in the 2nd District and VP of operations for National Association of Black Military Women.

What Other Factors Does The Va Take Into Account For Disability

How much the VA pays for 100 percent disability

There are other factors that make the ratings change too. For example, if a veteran has a rating on each leg or each arm then those ratings are combined together and give the overall combined rating an extra boost. Also, if a veteran has too many ratings on one arm or leg then VA stops counting those ratings. Further, a veteran can step up to 100% through total disability due to individual unemployability. That veteran must show that he cannot work and that he meets a certain rating.

The only help the VA offers veterans is to provide a chart and a couple dozen rules and exceptions. Ironically, the VA does not even use this chart. Instead the VA has its own combined rating calculator. VA employees actually call it the Combinator.

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Va Waiver Of Retirement

Traditionally, federal law prohibited concurrent receipt of both VA Disability and military retirement payments, which meant a retiree had to waive military retirement, dollar for dollar, to receive VA disability.

This waiver is now gone for a normal military retiree with a disability rating of 50% or higher., as a result of a 2003 federal law. 10 U.S. Code § 1414. This program is also known as Concurrent Retirement & Disability Pay, or CRDP, and the amount of retirement restored to retirees to negate the waiver is still reflected as CRDP on the Retiree Account Statement

It remains in effect, however, for retirees with a non-combat related disability rating of 40% or below. 38 U.S. Code § 5304, and 38 U.S. Code § 5305.

NOTE – this relaxation of concurrent receipt only applies to retirees with at least 20 years of creditable service, pursuant to 10 U.S. Code § 1414. A military member who is medically retired with fewer than 20 years of service still waives retirement in return for disability.

What Is Va Disability Compensation

If you were wounded or injured or became sick as a result of your military service, you may be entitled to VA disability compensation. This benefit is a tax-free monthly payment from the Department of Veterans Affairs to affected military veterans.

The amount you may receive varies with the severity of the service-related condition. The more severe or debilitating your condition, the more VA disability compensation benefit you may receive.

The VA pays benefits for physical wounds and injures as well as mental health/psychological conditions. So you may receive benefits for service-related mental health conditions including post-traumatic stress disorder , anxiety, and depression.

To qualify for VA disability compensation, you must be able to show that your disability was due to your military service, aggravated by your military service, or it must be one of the conditions listed as presumptive by the VA. See below for a more detailed discussion of presumptive conditions.

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How Is The Amount Of Social Security Disability Benefits Calculated

The social security disability amounts vary for each individual. Calculating social security disability benefits often requires the Social Security Agency to evaluate your Average Indexed Monthly Earnings in addition to your Primary Insurance Amount . Depending on how high your AIME was, a social security disability benefits amount calculator may calculate a higher amount for you.

The AIME is used to estimate social security disability benefits by adjusting or indexing your earnings to reflect the general wage increases throughout the years you were employed or worked. The AIME is crucial to demonstrate an increase in your benefits and ensure the rise in earnings reflects your benefits. The SSA looks at up to thirty-five years of your work history, then uses the social security disability income calculator to calculate the years with the highest indexed earnings divided by the total months of those years.

For SSDI, the average lifetime earnings before your disability are the only factor for calculating your social security disability benefit amount. Therefore, the severity of your disability is not included in the calculation. Once your AIME is calculated, the SSA then uses that number in a formula that calculates your PIA. The PIA is the key factor in the calculation and acts as the base amount for your social security disability monthly payment.

The SSA uses a PIA formula that calculates the sum of:

  • 90% of the first $996 of the AIME +
  • 15% of the AIME over $6,0002.
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    VA Disability Rates

    Veterans Law Group has been successfully handling veterans disability claims for the past 25 years, including Agent Orange claims. Our job is to acquire and assemble the information the VA needs to easily grant your appeal. We collect reports, develop strategies, and make your best arguments to the VA on appeal. Contact us today for a free evaluation of your case.

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    What Benefits Are Available To Veterans

    The VA provides benefits to former service members who have developed disabilities related to their active duty, training, or inactive duty. The VA only covers certain disabilities if the veteran can prove the link between the service and the illness, often referred to as the service connection.

    In Agent Oranges case, however, the V.A. considers that any related condition has a direct connection to your service if you were exposed to the toxin.

    Va Disability Pay Chart And Compensation Rates: Cost

    The cost-of-living adjustment for 2022 is 5.9 percent, according to a recent announcement by the Social Security Administration. This will lead to a significant increase in next years VA disability rates and monthly compensation for veterans.

    Continue reading to view the 2022 VA disability pay chart.

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    Ssa Expedited Processing For Veterans

  • 100% Permanent and Total Veterans InitiativeIn March 2014, SSA introduced a new initiative to expedite the processing of applications from Veterans who have a 100% Permanent and Total disability rating from the VA. To receive expedited processing, Veterans should identify themselves as a Veteran rated 100% P& T when initiating the SSI/SSDI application, and should provide the VA rating notification letter to SSA.
  • Wounded WarriorsVeterans who received disabling mental or physical health injuries while on active duty on or after October 1, 2001 are eligible for expedited SSI/SSDI application processing. The injury does not need to have occurred during combat operations. When initiating the SSI/SSDI application, Veterans should inform SSA that their injury occurred while on active duty.
  • Why Does The Va Claim That Its Not A Law Enforcement Agency And Thus Cannot Enforce Title 38 In Divorce Courts

    When Will I Get My VA Disability Back Pay?

    Thats because

  • Its not a law enforcement agency. Its not the Department of Justice, the FBI, the Secret Service or the BATFE . Its just the Department of Veterans Affairs!– and –
  • It does not have the authority given by Congress, nor the manpower to go into court to intervene whenever a divorce court was considering VA payments in a case involving family support or garnishment. Nobody has that kind of unlimited personnel budget!
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    If I Have Other Questions What Should I Do

    See a military legal assistance attorney or private attorney as soon as possible. Your lawyer can answer many questions and help you to make a fair and intelligent decision about your choices, options and alternatives.

    * * *The LEGAL EAGLE series of client handouts is prepared by Mark E. Sullivan , a family law attorney in Raleigh, N.C.

    With Dependents Including Children

    Find the dependent status in the left column that best describes you. Then look for your disability rating in the top row. Your monthly basic rate is where your dependent status and disability rating meet.

    If you have more than one child or your spouse receives Aid and Attendance benefits, be sure to also look at the Added amounts table, and add these to your amount from the Basic rates table.

    Basic rates for monthly payments

    Dependent status 30% disability rating 40% disability rating 50% disability rating 60% disability rating
    Dependent status Veteran with 1 child only 30% disability rating 476.35 40% disability rating 681.77 50% disability rating 963.04 60% disability rating 1,216.39
    With 1 child and spouse 30% disability rating 532.35 40% disability rating 756.77 50% disability rating 1,056.04 60% disability rating 1,328.39
    With 1 child, spouse, and 1 parent 30% disability rating 574.35 40% disability rating 812.77 50% disability rating 1,126.04 60% disability rating 1,412.39
    With 1 child, spouse, and 2 parents 30% disability rating 616.35 40% disability rating 868.77 50% disability rating 1,196.04 60% disability rating 1,496.39
    With 1 child and 1 parent 30% disability rating 518.35 40% disability rating 737.77 50% disability rating 1,033.04 60% disability rating 1,300.39
    With 1 child and 2 parents 30% disability rating 560.35 40% disability rating 793.77 50% disability rating 1,103.04 60% disability rating 1,384.39

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    Special Monthly Compensation Rates For Veterans With Dependents Including Children

    Effective December 1, 2020

    Levels L through O cover specific disabilities and situations. Learn how we assign SMC levels L through O

    Level R may apply if you need daily help from another person for basic needs .

    Level S may apply if you cant leave the house because of your service-connected disabilities.

    Start with the Basic SMC rates table. Find the dependent status in the left column that best describes you. Then look for your SMC letter designation in the top row. Your monthly basic rate is where your dependent status and SMC letter meet.

    If you have more than one child or your spouse receives Aid and Attendance benefits, be sure to also look at the Added amounts table, and add these to your amount from the Basic SMC rates table.

    Basic SMC rates

    With 1 child and spouse
    With 1 child, spouse, and 1 parent SMC-L
    With 1 child, spouse, and 2 parents SMC-L
    With 1 child and 1 parent
    With 1 child and 2 parents
    Each additional child under age 18 SMC-L
    Each additional child over age 18 in a qualifying school program SMC-L
    Spouse receiving Aid and Attendance SMC-L SMC-N 160.89

    Start with the Basic SMC rates table. Find the dependent status in the left column that best describes you. Then look for your SMC letter designation in the top row. Your monthly basic rate is where your dependent status and SMC letter meet.

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