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What Are The Requirements For Va Unemployability

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Misunderstandings In Tdiu Requirements

3 Ways to Get an Individual Unemployability (TDIU) VA Rating

The most common misunderstandings about qualifying for TDIU happen when service members do not realize that Extraschedular TDIU allows them to apply even if they have not met the disability rating laid out in Schedular TDIU requirements. Its important to understand that obtaining TDIU is about the impact the service-connected disability has on the service members ability to obtain and maintain employment and that individual cases may meet that requirement despite the disability rating.

Another common misunderstanding is that service members cannot qualify for TDIU if they work. The definition of substantially gainful employment is subject to interpretation and does not mean that the eligible service member cannot work at all. Employment that does not provide a substantial wage or employment that is marginal does not disqualify a service member from TDIU eligibility.

The most important thing to remember about TDIU is that it is individual unemployability, which means that there is a lot of room for interpretation based on the individuals circumstances. While the process of navigating TDIU requirements, determining eligibility, and applying for the benefits can seem daunting, TDIU benefits have tremendous potential to improve quality of life and access to health care. If you have questions about your eligibility or want to see how a VA benefits attorney can help you, contact us right away for a free case review.

Am I Still Eligible For Total Disability Individual Unemployability If Im Currently Working

If you are currently working but dont earn more than the federal poverty threshold, then the VA may consider that to be marginal employment.

If you are currently working in a protected work environment, for example, a family business, or at a job that allows specific accommodations, and your earnings are above the federal poverty threshold, you may still be entitled to TDIU benefits, because the VA does not consider a protected work environment to be substantially gainful employment.

Tdiu Factor #: Education And Employment History

This is an area ripe for error by the VA. The focus of these factors is the totality of the Veterans current situation. Assume you are a lawyer and even though your service-connected conditions were impacting your work, you were employed on Monday.

If you could not work on Tuesday because of the service-connected disability, the temptation is for the VA Regional Office to say that the situation is temporary, or you were just employed, or you are highly educated and can certainly find gainful employment. At least in theory, the VA Regional Office has a point.

However, the focus of the TDIU evaluation is the totality of your present circumstances not speculation on the path forward for the highly educated or long-employed Veteran.

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Other Important Factors About Unemployability Requirements:

  • The VA only recognizes disabilities that are already service-connected when assessing a TDIU claim. If you have other pending claims, they will not be considered in your TDIU decision.
  • Disabilities that are not service-connected will not be considered in your TDIU decision.
  • The age of the veteran is not a factor the VA will take into consideration. The decision will be based solely on the service-connected disability.

Receiving TDIU compensation can be life-changing for a veteran. If you are unable to maintain substantially gainful employment but do not meet these requirements, do not fear. The VA provides more exceptions to TDIU requirements that will be outlined in Part 2. And if you need help with a TDIU / Unemployability claim, !

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Do You Work In A Protected Environment Tdiu Income Limits May Be Waived

VA Individual Unemployability Fact Sheet (FREE Download)

You can earn more than $13,590 per year and still qualify for TDIU if you work in a protected work environment.

If an employer makes special accommodations for your disability that enable you to keep working and earning above the poverty threshold, the VA classifies this as employment in a protected work environment.

The VA doesnt have a defined policy on which special accommodations qualify a job as a protected work environment.

Examples of special accommodations might include being paid the same amount for less work or productivity than other employees, or being excused from mandatory training. Veterans who work in a family business often qualify for TDIU if theyre given time off due to their disability but still paid the same.

If you apply for TDIU, the VA will make a judgment about whether or not your job is in a protected environment based on the facts of your case.

Including a statement from your employer detailing your special accommodations and relating those to your disability will help demonstrate to the VA that you work in a protected environment.

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Am I Eligible For Individual Unemployability If Im Currently Working

Individual unemployability benefits are reserved for veterans whose service-connected disabilities prevent them from obtaining and maintaining substantially gainful employment. Two situations exist in which veterans may be employed and still qualify for individual unemployability benefits:

  • Protected Work Environment. When special accommodations are made by an employer that allow a veteran to work there with no reduction in pay or benefits, it is called a protected work environment. Veterans employed in a protected work environment may still qualify for individual unemployability benefits from VA.

Frequently Asked Questions About Va Income Limits

Will my assets count against my VA unemployability income limits?

No. If you own your house and your car, these wont be held against you when the VA calculates your income.

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Will my job count against me when I apply?

No, as long as you meet the requirements discussed earlier, you are eligible for compensation. However, there is some evidence that veterans who are employed may be denied at a higher rate than those who are not currently working.

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If I do odd jobs, will the money I earn disqualify me for benefits?

The VA provides an example of a veteran dog-sitting for a neighboras an odd job that will not count as income. Jobs under the marginal level are usually within the individual unemployability income limits.

Will the help I get from others count as income?

Many veterans who have service-connected disabilities have to rely on the assistance of family and friends. Help with utilities, rent, or other financial assistance from friends or family members will not be counted as income.

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If I Work And Receive Tdiu Are There Any Va Unemployability Income Limits

I often hear this question from a veteran who does not know the rules pertaining to VA unemployability income limits:

I would apply for TDIU benefits, but dont want to stop earning an income.

Veterans, like anyone else in American society, really just want the opportunity to work to thrive in American society. The VAs TDIU benefit exists to help the veteran who is unable to participate in substantially gainful activity due to his or her service-connected disabilities. Well talk more about the term substantially gainful activity in other posts in this post, I want to focus on some exceptions to the VA unemployability income limits.

But first, to find out what you can recover when you receive TDIU the formal name for the VA unemployability benefit you need only look at what a veteran with your family size will receive with a 100% disability rating.

Here are the VA Disability Ratings Tables showing the amounts the VA pays for 100% disability in 2018 first without children, then with children:

Those numbers seem big but when compared with what many of us made in the military, they are not altogether unreasonable.

What these charts do not tell us, however, is what the VA unemployability income limits are or, said another way, whether you earn too much money to be eligible for VA TDIU.

Many veterans will not take that job, though, because they are told that they would exceed the VA unemployability income limits and lose their TDIU benefits.

How Do I Obtain A Permanent And Total Disability Rating

VA Individual Unemployability (TDIU) C& P Exams

The first thing you must do to obtain a permanent and total disability rating is to prove that your condition is service-connected.

There is no VA benefits application for permanent and total disability. But if you believe that your total disability is unlikely to improve, and you have supporting evidence for this, you can write a letter to the VA requesting them to find you permanently and totally disabled. You should include medical evidence in your letter to support the request, including but not limited to medical reports, doctors notes, and treatment records.

The VA may determine at the time you apply for benefits that you are permanent and totally disabled. Be prepared to support this claim in the event they dont so designate you first.

What Can Disability Law Group Do for Me?

We want veterans to get the compensation they need and deserve for the service theyve provided our country. Our team has worked with countless veterans to explain how TDIU and permanent and total disability benefits can support them. We will review your case and advise you of your legal options. If your application was wrongfully denied, well step in and appeal the decision.

Trust Disability Law Group to help with your VA benefits application.

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Va Individual Unemployability Back Pay

This article explains how veterans get their VA Individual Unemployability back pay. This article also covers missing back pay, back pay amounts, and appealing. Well explain how many veterans end up missing thousands of dollars in IU back pay.

Have questions about how to get your VA Individual Unemployability back pay? We can help. We offer free VA claim evaluations to anyone who needs help.

Total Disability Based On Individual Unemployability

Total Disability based on Individual Unemployability is a benefit offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs that allows disabled veterans who are unable to work due to a service-connected disability to receive disability compensation equal to a 100 percent rating, even if their combined disability rating does not reach a schedular 100 percent.

Veterans unable to obtain and maintain substantially gainful employment due to service-connected conditions can qualify for Individual Unemployability benefits. A substantially gainful occupation is a job that pays above the poverty threshold. Under some circumstances, veterans may qualify even if they are working a job that pays above this income threshold.

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Tdiu Attorney: Eligibility Requirments For Va Benefits

Evidence that must be part of a veterans disability benefits claim to obtain IU / TDIU benefits includes:

  • Medical evidence allowing evaluation of the veterans current physical and mental condition, e.g., results of VA examinations, hospital reports, and/or outpatient records. As in other claims, the VA may schedule a medical examination if the veterans medical evidence is incomplete or inconsistent.
  • Employment and work history for five years prior to the date on which the veteran became too disabled to work, as well as for any work performed after this date.
  • Forms completed by each employer for whom the veteran worked during the 12-month period prior to the date the veteran last worked.
  • Social Security Administration reports if the vet receives Social Security Disability benefits, if the veterans other evidence is insufficient to award 1 compensation
  • Records from the VAs Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Service if evidence suggests rehab was undertaken but unsuccessful or was found to be medically unfeasible.

If the IU benefit is granted, the vet must complete a VA employment questionnaire each year until the age of 69 to affirm that he or she remains incapable of maintaining substantially gainful employment.

As in other cases, VA claims examiners may request additional information at any time to supplement or clarify evidence in a veterans claim. This, of course, slows the process.

How Can A Veteran Earn An Income And Stay Within Va Unemployability Income Limits

VA Individual Unemployability Back Pay

To answer this question, we need only look to the law.

For those of you that dont know what TDIU is, I encourage you to read this post to get a basic understanding of the 2 types of TDIU Benefits. To those of you trying to win your VA TDIU Claim, I encourage you to consider whether a copy of the VA TDIU Field Manual, or the VA TDIU eBook Package will help you understand and improve your VA TDIU Claims.

38 C.F.R. §4.16 the section of the Code of Federal Regulations that states the requirements for eligibility for TDIU Benefits, states the following:

Total disability ratings for compensation may be assigned, where the schedular rating is less than total, when the disabled person is, in the judgment of the rating agency, unable to secure or follow a substantially gainful occupation as a result of service-connected disabilities

Now, as Ive discussed before on the Veterans Law Blog, the law does not clearly define what substantially gainful occupation is.

But the law DOES define what Substantially Gainful employment IS NOT.

Read the rest of 38 C.F.R. §4.16:

So there you have it the 2 ways that Veteran can earn an income while receiving VA TDIU benefits and stay within the VA unemployability income limits: when the employment is marginal and when the employment is sheltered.

Well look at them in more detail, below.

Truth be told, I have no clue why Congress wrote the laws this way when they wrote them someday Ill dig into the legislative history to understand it.

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Military And Veteran License Plates

To obtain certification of Section 3 on the MVR-33A application for military/veterans license plates the Division of Veterans Affairs requires applicants to submit a copy of their DD-214 and if applicable a VA Rating letter.

No other documentation will be accepted, with the exception of a DD-1300 for the Gold Star Lapel Button plate, and certain documents for Active Duty Service Members who have not received a previous discharge. See the FAQ Section below for more information.

Only a NC Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Accredited Service Officer may certify this section in accordance with N.C.G.S § 20-79.4, and all applicable regulations of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.

Submit a copy of your DD-214 #4 that meets the following requirements:

  • Honorable/under honorable conditions discharge ANDONEof the following service requirements
  • Two years of Active Duty Service for those who enlisted after September 9th 1980 OR
  • 180 Days of peace time active duty service if enlisted prior to September 9th 1980 OR
  • 90 days of war time service if enlisted prior to September 9th 1980

*National Guard/Reservist must have been activated Federally and completed their full term of service, a DD-214 would be issued for those activated. NGB22s Do not satisfy the requirement.

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About Va Claims Insider

VA Claims insider is an education-based coaching/consulting company. Were 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 for a wide range of disability conditions.

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How Do I Apply For Individual Unemployability

There are three ways in which veterans can apply for Individual Unemployability benefits:

  • Online using the eBenefits portal on VAs website
  • At their local regional office with the assistance of a VA employee
  • With the help of a Veteran Service Organization , legal representative, or an accredited VA claims agent.
  • Each of these options requires the veteran to complete VA Form 21-8940: Veterans Application for Increased Compensation Based on Unemployability.

    Va Unemployability Requirements And Income Limits

    VA Individual Unemployability (TDIU) and Working

    by Veteran Toolbox | Sep 25, 2018 | Loans |

    Veterans who are unemployed because of service-connected disabilities can receive individual unemployability benefits. This financial support ensures they are able to meet their basic needs, even though their disability prevents them from working.

    For eligibility of qualifying for individual unemployability benefits, you must:

    • Be a veteran
    • Have at least one or more service-connected disabilities rated at the qualifying percentage
    • Show that you are unable to obtain and/or maintain gainful employment

    Additionally, for total disability individual unemployability, veterans must show their disability:

    • Is connected to their time served and
    • Is sufficient to prevent them mentally or physically from gaining or maintain employment and
    • Is rated at 60 percent or more or
    • Is rated at 40 percent or more with a combined rating of 70 percent or more if two or more disabilities are present

    Qualifying with a disability rating and dont necessarily require long-term care, doesnt mean you have no job at all or can never work. Many veterans receiving unemployability benefits and disability compensation still do odd jobs or work on an occasional basis. However, their disability prevents them from finding or keeping jobs that would provide enough income to support their basic needs.

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    Which Veterans Currently Get Va Unemployability Benefits Each Month

    You may wonder which veterans benefit most from the VA unemployability program. According to A 21st Century System for Evaluating Veterans for Disability Benefits, IU is a fast-growing compensation option for vets. According to the VAs annual finance report, in FY2020, 373,205 vets got IU benefits. Veterans from these service eras qualified for VA unemployability benefits from 2000-2006, per the SSA:

  • Vietnam veterans who served from 1964-1975
  • Peacetime veterans who served from 1975-1990
  • Gulf War veterans who served from 1990-present
  • Social Security Disability Awards

    Typically, disabled veterans are awarded Social Security Disability benefits before receiving their entitled VA unemployability benefits.

    Social Security Disability benefits can be used to strengthen Total Disability Individual Unemployability claims, especially if the social security award covers the same disability involved in the TDIU claim.

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