How Does Veterans Affairs Determine Disability Pay Rates?


Quick Answer

Disability pay rates are determined based on the degree of disability, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. When the disability is serious, the VA offers additional compensation for dependents. If the veteran has multiple disabilities, the VA calculates them together using a combined ratings table.

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Full Answer

The VA calculates disability in 10 percent increments from 0 to 100 percent, explains the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. A veteran must have at least 10 percent disability to receive compensation and at least 30 percent disability to receive compensation for dependents. If a veteran has two or more disabilities, the VA does not add together the percentage ratings of the disabilities but rather uses a combined ratings table to come up with a disability figure and then rounds it to the nearest full percentage.

The veteran must not have received a dishonorable discharge to be eligible for disability compensation, states the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. He must have sustained or aggravated the disability during active service or training for active or inactive service. The veteran must provide medical evidence of the mental or physical disability and its link with military service. The VA presumes the disability is service-related even in the absence of evidence for veterans who were former prisoners of war, deployed in Southwest Asia during the Gulf War or exposed to herbicides, radiation, mustard gas or Lewisite.

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