Skip to content

What Is VA Disability Compensation?

VA Disability Compensation is a tax free monetary benefit paid to Veterans with disabilities that are the result of a disease or injury incurred or aggravated during active military service. Compensation may also be paid for post-service disabilities that are considered related or secondary to disabilities occurring in service and for disabilities presumed to be related to circumstances of military service, even though they may arise after service. Generally, the degrees of disability specified are also designed to compensate for considerable loss of working time from exacerbations or illnesses.

Who Is Eligible?

You may be able to get disability compensation if you have a current illness or injury (known as a condition) that affects your body or mind and you meet at least one of the requirements listed below.

Both of these must be true:

  • You served on active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty training, and
  • You have a disability rating for your service-connected condition

And at least one of these must be true:

  • You got sick or injured while serving in the military—and can link this condition to your illness or injury (called an inservice disability claim), or
  • You had an illness or injury before you joined the military—and serving made it worse (called a preservice disability claim), or
  • You have a disability related to your active-duty service that didn’t appear until after you ended your service (called a post-service disability claim)

Presumed disabilities

If you have a disability that’s been diagnosed by a doctor and that we consider to be related to your military service because of a specific aspect of that service, you may be able to get disability benefits based on this presumed disability.

What should I do if I received an other than honorable, bad conduct, or dishonorable discharge?

If you’ve received one of these discharge statuses, you may not be eligible for VA benefits.

Find out how to apply for a discharge upgrade.

Learn about the VA Character of Discharge review process.

How Much Does VA Pay?

The amount of basic benefit paid ranges, depending on how disabled you are. VA makes a determination about the severity of your disability based on the evidence you submit as part of your claim, or that VA obtains from your military records. VA rates disability from 0% to 100% in 10% increments (e.g. 10%, 20%, 30% etc.). However, it does not simply add them up. It uses what is called a combined rating table

CLICK HERE to learn more about the combined rating table and for the current VA compensation rates.

Note:  You may be paid additional amounts, in certain instances, if:

  • you have very severe disabilities or loss of limb(s)
  • you have a spouse, child(ren), or dependent parent(s)
  • you have a seriously disabled spouse

Special Monthly Compensation (SMC) is an additional tax-free benefit that can be paid to Veterans, their spouses, surviving spouses and parents. For Veterans, Special Monthly Compensation is a higher rate of compensation paid due to special circumstances such as the need of aid and attendance by another person or a specific disability, such as loss of use of one hand or leg. For spouses and surviving spouses, this benefit is commonly referred to as aid and attendance and is paid based on the need of aid and attendance by another person.

Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) is a tax free monetary benefit generally payable to a surviving spouse, child, or parent of service-members who died while on active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty training or survivors of Veterans who died from their service-connected disabilities. DIC for parents is an income based benefit.

How to Apply?

  • Contact our office at (330) 722-9368 and work with an accredited County Veterans Service Officer

What to Bring For Filing a VA Disability Claim

  • Discharge; DD-214
  • Marriage certificate (current marriage)
  • Prior marital history (vet & spouse)
    • DD/MM/YYYY, place of marriage, name of whom married to, how marriage ended (death, divorce, etc.), DD/MM/YYYY, place of ending
  • Birth certificates (dependent children), proof of school or disability if over age 18
  • SSN’s (vet & dependents)
  • Medical diagnosis and evidence (SMR, PME)
  • Direct deposit information
Back To Top