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Knee Brace

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Hi everyone,

In January of this year my husband was issued a knee brace for his left knee injury which is SC.

He was told by VA to put in for a clothing allowance. Which he has yet to do.

My question is what is the criteria for a clothing allowance besides filling out an application.


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Here is a link for the handbook section for clothing allowance.


I will post the scope section straight form the handbook for you also.


a. Veterans Service Center officials in the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) refer

applications for the clothing allowance benefit to VHA in all cases, with the exception of a

clothing allowance benefit as an accrued benefit after the veteran’s death.

b. Certain clothing allowance claims require a determination by a Prosthetic Representative,

or designated physician, when the veteran's disability appears temporary in nature or when, for

other reasons, a review of the record and/or physical examination of the veteran is necessary.

c. In all cases where a review is determined to be necessary, the Prosthetic Representative,

and/or designated physician, must determine that:

(1) Use of the device or skin medication is medically prescribed; and

(2) In the case of a device, such device qualifies as a prosthetic or orthopedic appliance;

(3) The device or skin medication tends to wear out, tear, or cause irreparable damage to the

veteran's clothing; and

(4) The veteran actually uses the device or skin medication with sufficient consistency to

wear out, tear, or cause irreparable damage to clothing. If it cannot be determined from the

veteran’s records that all preceding conditions have been met, an examination and/or evaluation

is required.

VHA HANDBOOK 1173.15 May 17, 2007

d. The clothing allowance may be authorized for veterans who wear braces, rigid spinal

braces, rigid cervical braces, or who use wheelchairs, crutches, rigid orthotics and/or ankle

and/or foot orthosis (AFOs), ileostomy and colostomy appliances or similar devices, or who use

certain skin medications and/or ointments.

e. Payment of the clothing allowance is made in a lump sum annually to those for whom

entitlement is established as of August 1. Future annual payments are made to those who are on

the rolls with established permanent or temporary entitlement on August 1 of subsequent years.

These annual payments are not related to specific periods and prorated payments are not made.

For example, if a veteran establishes eligibility for the clothing allowance as of any date after

August 1 of any year, the claimant is not entitled to any payment for that year. No amount is

payable until the annual payment becomes due on the following August 1. Likewise, a partial

refund is not required should the veteran's entitlement be terminated during a period after the

annual clothing allowance has been furnished, which is prior to the succeeding August 1.

Here is the link for the form you need to fill out 21-8678


Hope this helps you,


Edited by tdak (see edit history)
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Thanks Tdak,

Another question I have that perhaps you or whomever can answer is: he is already 30% SC for left knee injury without knee brace. Now in order to get another 10% because of knee brace should he say:

"Secondary to left knee injury" or Secondary to osteoarthritic changes"? He has arthritis in his knee(s).

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  • HadIt.com Elder


Now in order to get another 10% because of knee brace should he say:

The VA will not give him a % for the brace, but he would qualify for the Arthritis, also pay attention to his altered gait. This will probably cause problems down the road with, ankles , back, and or hips.

Fill out the papers for clothing allowance ASAP, he may need a new pair of jeans soon.

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I have been down this road. Here is the best advice I can give.

The Clothing allowance request form is to go to either Ortho I believe. You submit your form. The thing with clothing allowance and knee braces is that the knee braces need to be metal. 8/10 times they will deny unless its metal. They say the soft ones should not wear your clothes out and will deny. I have a set of metal, soft and then the knee wraps, so I've been down that path.

As for arthritis your going to either need a blood test result or and xray. When they read the xray they will see a white build up on the bones or in the knee caps themselves. They shot my knees both with steroids and cortisol??? It lasted ok for 1 week. Then I was worse off after. Make sure they read your xrays properly.....if not go to correspondence and tell the clerk you want everything that pertains to your feet, leg, knees, and back. Bring it to a very good chiropractor.

A lot of times the problems with the knee and the gait problem can be a tracking issue (mine dont track hardly at all anymore) and the muscles in your knee tie into your lower back....Good luck. I received 40% for two slipped discs in back and 20% left knee, 20% right knee, off a IMO...very little C&P exam. (The VA gave me problems with my knee evals for years).

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