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Veterans Disability Ratings

va disability rates 2018

VA Disability Ratings — Get Benefits for All Your Injuries

Let us help you obtain maximum service-connected disability benefits

Veterans with service-connected injuries and illnesses deserve to receive all of the disabled veterans benefits promised to them by the U.S. government. However, the system used by the VA to judge disability and assign benefits can easily leave a deserving vet shortchanged.

It shouldn’t be up to a disabled veteran to work a numbers game to get proper benefits, but sometimes it comes down to that. Filing a VA disability benefits claim is easier and more likely to lead to a positive outcome if you have an experienced and knowledgeable guide leading the way.

Our VA benefits attorney can work with you or your disabled veteran loved one to ensure your benefits claim presents your injuries and illnesses in the most advantageous way possible. George Sink Sr. is himself a disabled Vietnam veteran who has had to fight for the benefits he deserved. As a disability lawyer, he will fight for you.

George Sink Sr. and his associates have the experience and the will to help you get the VA benefits you deserve – and FAST. You do not have to fight this fight alone.

How VA Disability Ratings Work

A veteran’s degree of disability rating determines the amount of their monthly benefit, which is a tax-free payment. The VA determines ratings for the severity of a veteran’s disability based on the evidence submitted as part of the veteran’s claim, or from evidence the VA obtains from military records.

For example, to receive a basic monthly payment for a physical disability, a veteran must show that their disability:

  • Was caused by a service-related injury or illness
  • If a single disability, is severe enough to be rated at 10% or more by the VA

A veteran disabled by a mental disorder may receive benefits if he or she can show:

  • The mental disorder is service connected.
  • The mental disorder prevents the vet from working for a living.
  • The vet does not already have a 100% VA disability rating.

Those calculations are pretty straight-forward, despite it being up to someone at the VA to determine what would amount to a 10% disability rating or that a mental disorder does or doesn’t leave the vet unable to work.

However, calculating disability ratings can quickly become more complicated. Disabled veterans often have multiple injuries and illnesses, and the VA allows benefits to be combined and paid for multiple disabilities. But determining combined disability ratings is not as simple a process.

Disability ratings are defined as percentiles, from 0% to 100%, in 10% increments (e.g., 10%, 20%, 30% etc.). When a vet has multiple disabling injuries or illnesses, they are rated separately and combined. However, they are not simply added. For example, a disability resulting in a 50% rating and one with a 30% rating do not yield an 80% combined rating.

Instead, the VA uses a table (known as the Combined Ratings Table) to come up with a disability rating when a veteran has multiple issues that qualify for benefits.

Taking the veteran’s most severe rating, such as a 50% disability rating for PTSD, and then the next most severe, such as a 30% rating for diabetes (often Mellitus Type 2 caused by exposure to Agent Orange), and tracking from the left-hand column and then the top row, the table provides a combined rating of 65%. Then, if there was a third disability, a hearing loss with a 20% rating, for example, the 65% and 20% combined come to 72%, which would be rounded down to 70%.

Combined ratings are only rounded once after all disability ratings are combined. If a rating is midway between 10% increments or higher (65%, 66%, 67%, etc.) the final rating is rounded up. Lower ratings (64%, 63%, etc.) are rounded down to the nearest 10% increment.

That is some complicated math, and it’s understandable that anyone might be confused by it unless they work with the figures day in and day out like the lawyers at George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers.

Part of the services George Sink, P.A. Veterans Disability Lawyers provides disabled vets is a review of their disability compensation rating, with an eye toward raising it and the benefit payment, if possible. We can help if you already receive VA disability benefits, have been denied benefits or are just beginning to seek VA disability payments.

We can make sure your VA benefits claim reflects what you truly deserve. You do not have to fight the bureaucracy for fair treatment on your own. Our team includes veterans at George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers. We will stand and fight with our fellow vets.

Is Your Disability Rating Correct? Should It Be Higher?

A claim for veterans’ disability payments must provide military service records plus medical records and other documentation of the veteran’s disabling injury or illness. The latter group of documents may include records from:

  • VA Medical Centers (including private facilities that provide VA-authorized treatment)
  • Private doctors and/or hospitals
  • Social Security Administration if, for example, the vet has already obtained Social Security Disability benefits

In addition, if a claim does not provide sufficient information, the VA may require the vet to undergo a medical examination by a doctor chosen by the VA. A rating decision would be heavily based on that medical report.

There are many circumstances that could make it difficult for a disabled veteran to obtain and provide records that depict their medical condition. The vet’s disability itself is often an obstacle. However, it is the disabled veteran’s responsibility to provide required documents or identify them in a manner that enables the VA to obtain them.

The experienced veterans disability claims lawyers of George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers help disabled veterans prepare benefits claims that clearly demonstrate qualifying injuries and illnesses. If your VA disability rating is lower than it should be, we can help you get your rating reevaluated and raised. This can mean more money for you and your family every month.

Remember, existing claims can be reopened or appealed. New claims may seek benefits for a disability not previously identified. Vets may also file secondary disability claims for disabilities that develop as a result of or are worsened by another service-connected condition.

Your attorney from George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers can assess the status of your VA disability benefits claim at any point in a free initial consultation. Our goal is to obtain the maximum benefit you are entitled to, and to get it to you ASAP.

We have the experience, knowledge and contacts necessary to locate documents your claim requires. We can also refer you to medical specialists who we know and trust to understand your disability and the VA’s needs for a proper ratings assessment.

Let Us Help You to Get All VA Disability Benefits You Deserve

A disabled veteran has the right to appeal any decision made by the VA, including an incorrect disability rating. And George Sink, P.A. Veterans Disability Lawyers have the experience and know-how to help you file a successful appeal or an original, reopened, new or secondary claim that increases your rating.

The VA has earned its reputation for being highly selective when reviewing disability claims and denying many veterans the benefits they deserve. In recent years, the VA has also faced a backload of claims, causing delays and mistakes.

At George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers, our veterans disability lawyers have dealt with thousands of VA disability benefits claims. We know what the VA requires. We can take on the burden of fighting the VA bureaucracy for you. You should have what was promised to you for your service to our country, and that means ALL BENEFITS you deserve.

Contact George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers today. You don’t have to go it alone. We are here to help disabled veterans just like you.