Additional Benefits for 100% Disabled Veterans

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Additional Benefits for 100% Disabled Veterans

hello everyone thank you so much for joining us today on Facebook we are here at Chism Chism and Kilpatrick my name is Maura Clancy I’m an attorney here at C CK and I’m joined today by Elise galovski who is also an attorney here at C CK and Rachel Foster who is accredited to represent claimants before the VA today we’re going to be talking about additional benefits that are available to veterans who have 100% disability ratings so to start we’re going to explain just to make sure that everyone has the same background what the significance of a 100% disability rating is and how you get there but then we’re also going to be talking about different benefits and programs that are available for disabled veterans and in some cases their family members if the veteran is in receipt of a 100% disability rating these these programs have a lot of different eligibility requirements in some cases there’s a lot of different services that are offered sometimes under the umbrella of the programs that we’re going to be talking about today so we would definitely encourage you as we always do to view any of the related blog posts or articles that we have on our website at C CK law comm we cover a lot of these benefits in more detail so if you are interested in anything that we’re talking about today and you want to do some additional research I would think that that’s a good place to start and additionally we will be able to respond to any questions that you leave in the comments feed next to this video so please feel free to leave any questions there we have a very efficient team who’s constantly getting back to people and so if you think that that’s going to be useful for you or you’d like to ask a question to get additional information please feel free to do that and we will leave any articles or information that we think is helpful to you in the comments feed as well so before we get started like I said we want to just lay the groundwork so that everyone understands before we start talking about additional benefits available to veterans who have 100% disability ratings how do you get a 1 percent rating we’ve done videos and articles on this topic there’s kind of two ways to get a 100% rating the first is if all of a veterans service connected conditions combined to a total scheduler rating of 100% so this is done by taking the the total of all of the veterans conditions and the percentage evaluation assigned to those conditions and adding them up in a special way that VA does when those conditions hit 100% total then the veteran is considered to be scheduler 100 or at a 100 percent rating another different way to get a 100 percent rating is to be granted entitlement to a total disability rating based on individual unemployability we sometimes refer to these as unemployability benefits or a total unemployability rating this is a way to get a 100 percent rating or to be considered totally disabled without having to have all of the individual conditions that you have add up to that scheduler 100 number so if you’re able to prove that the service-connected disabilities that you do have no matter what percentage is assigned to those conditions and you’re able to show that all of those conditions prevent your ability to work in a substantially gainful capacity then VA might award you what’s called the total disability rating based on unemployability or TBI you tdiu and scheduler 100 pay you at the same rate I believe the payment rate for 100% ratings right now is about $3,200 for a single veteran without dependents even though they’re both different avenues of getting there those different types of total disabilities the 100% scheduler or the 100% through TDI you will pay you at the same rate and the programs that we’re going to be talking about today are available to both types of veterans who have that 100% rating by either of those avenues another thing we want to mention is the importance of permanent and total ratings so some of the benefits that are available for just say veterans who are totally disabled or half that 100% rating are conditioned on the veteran having a permanent in total rating status so this is a little bit confusing sometimes because VA doesn’t consistently award every 100% rating with a permanent and total status it’s unclear sometimes why they do it in some cases over others but the idea is that not not only is the veteran entitled to the 100% rating but it’s also understood that their condition is not going to improve at all so VA has just decided that that rating will be total will be

permanent in the future so they assign that permanent in total or pnt status as we sometimes call it and that is sometimes one of the parameters that comes into play when we talk about additional benefits that are available for veterans that have total disability ratings so with all of that hopefully that sets the groundwork for the class of veterans that we are discussing being entitled to these benefits for what we’re talking about today and Elyse Oh actually no I want to start with Rachel the first type of benefit we want to talk about has to do with health care priority and also additional benefits available related to emergency care can you walk us through some of those specifics yes so once a veteran registers for medical care they are placed in one of eight types of priority groups according to the the Veterans Health Administration it classifies what co-pays varying co-pays what benefits medical benefits are available to the veterans as well veterans who are evaluated that total combined rating is 50% or higher or if they’re entitled to tdiu because their disabilities result and an inability to work they are placed in priority one so that is very significant especially regarding co-pays so that means essentially they get three urgent care visits a year without having to pay a copay and they don’t have to pay co-pays for inpatient or outpatient services they also don’t have to pay co-pays for medication which of course is huge and as part of being in priority group one if they’re permanently and totally disabled and in or receipt of TDI you me a provides for nursing home care for those veterans as well great and are there any additional benefits available for specifically under the umbrella of emergency care other than what you’ve already discussed yes so veterans and priority group one that are rated permanent and totally disabling are entitled to emergency care for any disability outside of the VA Health Administration and that’s at v– aids expense all it really has to oh they really have to show is that VA wasn’t reasonably available to provide the care that they need it at the time good so there’s at least that element of flexibility there too and that’s really good to know because I think one of the things that we sometimes get questions about is from veterans who are already getting care through the VA Medical Center but they’re not a 100 percent rating they don’t have that 100 percent rating yet so it’s definitely good to know that there are additional types of healthcare priority benefits so to speak for specifically for veterans who are totally disabled and Elise there’s also dental and vision care benefits that are available to veterans who have a 100% rating or who have tdiu and have the permanent and total status can you talk to us about those different types of benefits that might be available to our so for dental care its veterans who are either rated at a hundred percent or if they’re in receipt of tdiu you qualify what for what’s called class for dental care that’s essentially going to cover any sort of needed dental care so that’s going to include scheduled cleanings and x-rays it includes restorative procedures such as fillings crowns bridges it’s also going to help you with your dentures any oral surgeries that you might such as tooth extractions root canals anything like that or any reconstructive surgeries from a trauma or serious illness I should mention that the 100% doesn’t include people who are a temporary total so if you have a temporary 100 percent rating from maybe a a surgery or a knee replacement or something like that that doesn’t qualify you for the dental care it has to just be a scheduler 100 or the TDI you on the other hand Vision Care and hearing aids you actually don’t need to have a hundred percent rating for this all veterans are with any sort of compensable rating or qualify for a vision care and hearing aid so Vision Care that that’s gonna include any routine eye exams preventative testing such as glaucoma testing costs of eyeglasses which is great and then also hearing aids um so for the vision and hearing aids you only need to have a pencil rating for the dental care you need to have a 100 percent or TDI you okay and I’m glad that you made that

point also about the difference between a temporary total rating and a 100 percent rating so most a lot of you may know that if a veteran is receiving inpatient hospital care for a service-connected condition or undergoes a surgery such as a I think Elise mentioned knee replacement hip replacement things like that there are certain rules that allow the veterans who receive a 100% total rating for a temporary time that is in line with the amount of time that they spent hospitalized or recovering from a surgery such as a joint replacement so those temporary total ratings are great because they will provide a veteran with 100% compensation just in recognition of the fact that they were totally incapacitated during the surgery or during the hospitalization but since those total evaluations do have a definite end date they don’t last forever you don’t just get to keep them then and that is not going to be the type of 100% rating when it’s for a temporary period that’s going to allow you to avail yourself of a lot of the benefits that we’re talking about so I’m glad that you made that distinction Elise there is another program that allows for additional benefits specifically for the spouses and children of disabled veterans with 100% ratings and that’s the civilian health and medical program of the Department of Veterans Affairs we call it CHAMPVA it’s another VA acronym because that’s a pretty clunky title for our program but essentially the CHAMPVA program is a health care program in which VA will share the costs of certain covered healthcare services that are for the spouses and children of disabled veterans with the 100% disability rating so this is I think unique in that it’s not just a benefit that’s available to the veteran themselves for their own medical care but it’s also a benefit that they can use to the advantage of their families which i think is great I’m not sure that a lot of people know about this program we don’t see it a ton but it’s always something that when we get questions about it’s nice to be able to try to try to be successful in getting there to extend these benefits to a disabled veterans family because the type of healthcare services that are covered are pretty broad and range for the dependents so it could include ambulatory services Hospice treatment certain inpatient and outpatient treatments or hospitalizations family planning type medical services also medical equipment cost can be shared which is which is good there’s a whole list of different things that are covered under the CHAMPVA program again we would recommend that you look into the VA website that has a lot of information about these programs and also we have some materials on our website at CC case law comm that will cover a lot of the particulars of the different types of benefits that are available so we’re going to switch away from the healthcare world I think Rachel and we’re gonna now turn to the dependents education assistance benefit this is one that we definitely do see on a pretty routine basis in dealing with our compensation benefits appeals and claims so can you tell us what DEA is and how its available sure so DEA stands for dependents Education Assistance it’s actually part of the GI Bill program that offers education and training to surviving dependents and eligible dependents what determines that eligibility is of course the veterans rating so if they’re rated permanent and total whether it’s 100% or through TDI you currently or if at the time that they passed away they were rated totally and permanently disabled their surviving dependents could be eligible to receive DEA benefits great and these are sometimes awarded as I think I usually see these most commonly the DEA involvement when we are successful in getting a grant of tdiu or a 100 percent rating and the decision that implements that grant will usually automatically if they’ve determined that the veteran is permanent and totally permanently and totally disabled they’ll usually add that to the decision and indicate that the veteran was also entitled to dependents educational assistance which is good to know that’s also a helpful indicator for us to know that VA has deemed the veteran to be permanently and totally disabled so it kind of demystifies that process because sometimes that can be a little tricky to know what VA is thinking when it comes to that can you tell us also about any type of vocational rehabilitation

assistance that’s available for veterans with 100% ratings yeah so kind of in the same thing as the training and education offered through DEA eligible dependents can also pursue vocational rehabilitation and employment VR VR II services essentially so what that means is that they can get career counseling they can get guidance on how access different in various VA benefits and also personalize an academic counseling as well so if a veteran is entitled or at the time that they passed away they were entitled to DEA benefits that also opens up the eligibility for getting vocational rehabilitation benefits as well okay great Thank You Elise can we switch to you now to talk about different types of benefits that are available specifically for things like housing adaptation grants auto adaptive equipment grants things like that that are available for veterans with with total ratings yeah sure so just for an example there are three different grants which veterans can that had certain disabilities and who need adaptions either to their home or maybe their vehicle can receive if they need those adaptions in order to meet basically the needs of their daily lives to live more independently some of those grants are called the special acusada specially adapted housing especially adapted especially housing adaption grant and the automobile adapt adaptive equipment grant so you know each of those goes to different things but it’s gonna there are only certain disabilities that you can have to be eligible for those grants this is actually not one of those conditions where you need to have a 100% rating you actually just have to have a certain service-connected disability but usually those disabilities do result in a 100% rating anyways so some examples might include the loss of the use of one or more limbs blindness in both eyes loss of use of both hands or maybe certain severe burns basically that’s gonna require you to have some adoptions on your home and your vehicle so that you can get around and perform you know things of daily living exactly okay and that’s good to know because this kind of reminds me of the way that VA will do the temporary total evaluations for incapacitation and just in kind of with their whole rating scheme is that they’re trying to make sure that the compensation that’s awarded is responding to the impairment caused by the veterans service-connected conditions and as Elise was mentioning sometimes a veteran service-connected disability is so severe as to require certain changes to their environment changes to their vehicle so that they can use it in a safe and convenient way things need to be set up around the home so that the veterans can ambulate comfortably and things like that so it’s definitely worth looking into these types of benefits if you think you have a condition that’s severe enough to cause these things and if that condition is service-connected as Elise mentioned there is the ability to get these benefits without having a 100% rating in some circumstances it’s just going to be about what you are service-connected for VA is going to need to examine the impairment caused by your service-connected conditions to decide whether that impairment warrants one of these grants so that’s that’s something helpful to think about especially for veterans who don’t have the 100% rating quite yet I think probably my favorite topic of today’s discussion because I just learned about it when we were preparing for today’s topic is the space a flights and certain benefits that come along with that Elise you’ve got to tell me more so this is a new change as of 2019 veterans with permanent and total ratings can qualify for what’s called space available travel or space a flight through the air mobility command basically that means that they’re gonna be placed as travel priority six so their priority prioritized behind active-duty troops but they can fly you know through the Air Mobility Command this doesn’t cover their dependents and you do need to have that permanent in total status but so this is new and you can if you basically if you just look up the space a flights you can see the form right online how you can apply to that and you can travel that way once it’s safe to travel again I know that’s a good point not the most timely way to find out about this benefit it’s not super relevant or applicable at the current moment with everything that’s going on but the name the space a

flights name just kind of reminds me of you know traveling space so it’s cool I think we’re all going to need to do something like that once we are not homebound anymore but okay Thank You Elise that’s really good to know we wanted to wrap up just by throwing out a reminder that while the benefits that we’ve talked about today are VA specific there are a lot of different programs and benefits available through States and sometimes even you Nissa pala teas so VA is obviously a federal executive agency but different states have different types of programs that they put in place different funding that’s available grants things like that sometimes they have taxpayer assistance they have different types of parameters for applying for even hunting and fishing licenses vehicle license plates what am I forgetting also state park admissions there’s a whole lot of things that veterans who have 100% disability ratings can apply for potentially in the state in which they live so I know that there’s probably a variety of social service agencies hopefully set up in all of our all the states across the country that have different rules and have access to different information about programs but if you are seeking benefits through the VA don’t forget that it might also make sense to look into whether your state offers additional things that you might need that you’re not going to be able to get through the VA some of the things that I just mentioned all the states will vary so it’s hard to know exactly what you would qualify for it depends on where you live and what your state offers but there can be a lot of different things that go unnoticed sometimes people are so focused on working on VA compensation which totally makes sense but there are also other things out there that we wouldn’t want you to miss out on so we would recommend looking into that I think that’s all we have for today Rachel or Elise did you have anything to add before we conclude no I did kind of just give an overview of all these topics so most of the stuff is available right on the CC K’s website so I would encourage you to dive deeper into specific topics you might be more interested there perfect thank you both so much and thank you all for joining us today we really appreciate seeing you all and we hope to see you next time