Did you know that you don’t have to be rated 100% disabled by the VA to receive compensation at the 100% rate? Sounds counterintuitive, right? However, under the VA’s Individual Unemployability program veterans may receive 100% rating compensation if they are unable to maintain substantially gainful employment.
How does the VA define “substantially gainful employment?”
Substantially gainful employment is “employment at which non-disabled individuals earn their livelihood with earnings comparable to the particular occupation in the community where the veteran resides.”
That means, that even if you are not rated 100% disabled AND work but are not gainfully employed as defined above, you may be eligible for 100% disability compensation so long as your income does not exceed the poverty level.
Who is eligible for this special benefit?
Veterans with one service-connected disability rating of 60% or more OR veterans with two or more service-connected disabilities so long as one disability rating was at least 40% and you have a combined rating of at least 70%. Even if you don’t meet these rating requirements, you may still be considered unemployable and qualify for Individual Unemployability. Additionally, if you have evidence of an exceptional or unusual circumstance where your disability interferes with your job or requires frequent hospitalizations, you may be eligible for the program.
To find out more about Individual Unemployability, contact the VA at 1-800-827-1000.
Fort Lauderdale, Florida disability lawyers, LaVan & Neidenberg, represent over 5000 disability claimants. Our disability attorneys have experience with cross examining agency-appointed medical and vocational experts and take time when speaking with you about your disability claim. Call us today at 1-888-234-5758 for a FREE legal consultation. There is NO OBLIGATION to hire our firm and there are NO FEES unless one of our trained disability lawyers wins your case.