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I found the ratings charts for a whole lot of disabilities with thier specific rating. But depression does not have a percentage rating. Anyone have any idea what the depression rating is? Thanks!

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  • HadIt.com Elder

It really depends on how it affects the Veteran. It can range from 0% to 100%.

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There's depression that is relatively minor and there's "major depression"...depression can be episodic or it can be chronic. All of these play into how high a rating can be. I would suggest you look up "global assessment of functioning"(GAF) to get a good idea on what symptoms lead to what level of disability. A "GAF" may not be the end all be all, in VA terminology, but it gives one a good idea of how severe their symtpoms impact their lives from a social and occupational standpoint.

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Your GAF should be based on significant symptoms of disability based on the scores you provided. A GAF score is a tool they will use in figuring out your evaluation, but I would be cautious about assessing a specific percentage of disability based on a GAF since it is not listed anywhere in the specific criteria for assigning a percentage of disability. Here is the criteria the VA uses to assign percentages of disability for mental conditions:

General Rating Formula for Mental Disorders:

100% Total occupational and social impairment, due to such symptoms as: gross impairment in thought processes or communication; persistent delusions or hallucinations; grossly inappropriate behavior; persistent danger of hurting self or others; intermittent inability to perform activities of daily living (including maintenance of minimal personal hygiene); disorientation to time or place; memory loss for names of close relatives, own occupation, or own name

70% Occupational and social impairment, with deficiencies in most areas, such as work, school, family relations, judgment, thinking, or mood, due to such symptoms as: suicidal ideation; obsessional rituals which interfere with routine activities; speech intermittently illogical, obscure, or irrelevant; near-continuous panic or depression affecting the ability to function independently, appropriately and effectively; impaired impulse control (such as unprovoked irritability with periods of violence); spatial disorientation; neglect of personal appearance and hygiene; difficulty in adapting to stressful circumstances (including work or a worklike setting); inability to establish and maintain effective relationships

50% Occupational and social impairment with reduced reliability and productivity due to such symptoms as: flattened affect; circumstantial, circumlocutory, or stereotyped speech; panic attacks more than once a week; difficulty in understanding complex commands; impairment of short- and long-term memory (e.g., retention of only highly learned material, forgetting to complete tasks); impaired judgment; impaired abstract thinking; disturbances of motivation and mood; difficulty in establishing and maintaining effective work and social relationships

30% Occupational and social impairment with occasional decrease in work efficiency and intermittent periods of inability to perform occupational tasks (although generally functioning satisfactorily, with routine behavior, self-care, and conversation normal), due to such symptoms as: depressed mood, anxiety, suspiciousness, panic attacks (weekly or less often), chronic sleep impairment, mild memory loss (such as forgetting names, directions, recent events)

10% Occupational and social impairment due to mild or transient symptoms which decrease work efficiency and ability to perform occupational tasks only during periods of significant stress, or; symptoms controlled by continuous medication

0% A mental condition has been formally diagnosed, but symptoms are not severe enough either to interfere with occupational and social functioning or to require continuous medication

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I wasn't trying to imply that a GAF would lead directly to a definitive rating; rather, it gives one a general idea of what to expect and what to fight for. Being that GAF is directly tied to your occupational and social disability level, it should translate, very closely, to the ratings table provided. 31-50 is major to severe impairment in social and occupational abilities, which should project someone into the 50-100% range depending on other circumstances. This should tell you that a rating of 10% would be bogus and I probably wouldn't "expect" them to go with 100% right off the bat (though you should always fight for the highest percentage you think you should get).

Edited by Jay Johnson (see edit history)
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