A VA disability rating can significantly impact a Veteran’s financial situation, so it’s important to understand what a rating is, the metrics used to determine that rating, and what benefits you might be entitled to based on your VA disability rating.
REE Medical is dedicated to helping Veterans understand all areas of the disability claims process. In this blog post, we’ll break down everything you need to know about a VA disability rating.
What is a VA Disability Rating
A VA disability rating is a determination made by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that rates the severity of a Veteran’s service-related disability. That rating determines your disability benefits, including monthly compensation and access to healthcare and other VA programs.
The ratings scale, based on increments of 10%, starts at 0% as the least severe and goes to 100% as the most severe.
Combined Disability Rating
Under the VA’s disability calculations, ratings are not additive and cannot exceed a 100% total disability rating.
If it has been determined that a Veteran has more than one disability, the VA uses a Combined Ratings Table to calculate a combined disability rating.
How is a VA Disability Rating Determined
The following are used to determine a VA disability rating:
- An in-service event that proves an injury, toxin exposure, or traumatic experience took place while serving.
- Medical evidence that details your disability, including those related to your symptoms, medical records, hospital records, and a medical diagnosis.
- A medical diagnosis by a doctor.
- A Compensation and Pension, or C&P, exam. This exam is performed by a VA physician to determine if there is a service-connected disability.
Without these critical documents, a VA disability claim can be denied, or you may not receive the most accurate rating.
Compensations Based on Ratings
The 2023 Monthly VA Disability Payments are:
- 10% disability: $165.92 per month
- 20% disability: $327.99 per month
- 30% disability: $508.05 per month
- 40% disability: $731.86 per month
- 50% disability: $1,041.82 per month
- 60% disability: $1,319.65 per month
- 70% disability: $1,663.06 per month
- 80% disability: $1,933.15 per month
- 90% disability: $2,172.39 per month
- 100% disability: $3,621.95 per month
While Veterans with a 0% disability rating are not eligible for monthly compensation, they may be eligible to receive VA health care and other benefits. A veteran assigned a 0% rating can also file later claims for an increased rating.
Increasing a VA Disability Rating
If you believe you may be eligible for an increased VA disability rating, you need to start by providing the VA with certain documentation to support your claim. These can include:
- Medical records: You need to provide the VA with copies of your medical records, including treatment notes and test results. These records should be current and provide evidence of the worsening of your rated condition.
- Nexus letters: Statements from your treating physician: It is helpful to have a statement from your treating physician explaining the current severity of your disability and how it impacts your daily life. This can provide valuable information to the VA when determining your service connection or in reviewing an assigned rating that may underrepresent how it affects your everyday living.
- Military records: If your disability is related to your military service, you should provide the VA with copies of your military records, including any awards, performance evaluations, and separation papers.
- Other supporting documentation: Depending on your specific situation, you may need to provide other types of documentation to support your rating increase request. This could include statements from family members or friends, school records, or employment records.
As a neutral third party, REE Medical connects Veterans with impartial third-party physicians for thorough medical exams and robust documentation to support their claims.
Contact our team to learn how REE Medical can help you with the appeal process.