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  • 14 Questions about VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims

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    When a Veteran starts considering whether or not to file a VA Disability Claim, there are a lot of questions that he or she tends to ask. Over the last 10 years, the following are the 14 most common basic questions I am asked about ...
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  • Can a 100 percent Disabled Veteran Work and Earn an Income?

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    You’ve just been rated 100% disabled by the Veterans Affairs. After the excitement of finally having the rating you deserve wears off, you start asking questions. One of the first questions that you might ask is this: It’s a legitimate question – rare is the Veteran that finds themselves sitting on the couch eating bon-bons … Continue reading

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paulstrgn

IU after Retirement

Question

I was talking about this in another thread but as @Buck52 said I don't want to hijack someone else thread.

I will be retiring from the federal government around the end of October, I will be receiving a retirement check from them, I am also retired from the Air Force. My quest is can I get IU even though I am retired?

Once I retire I will also go to the VA Voc ReHab. I am also hoping (like everyone else on this site) to get to 100% P&T I almost there now.

If I do get 100% P&T is there any need to pursue IU?

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If you get 100% P&T there is no reason to pursue IU.  I believe if you retire they will not allow IU.  IU is for people who have lost their job or can not hold a job due to their service connected disability and is almost as hard to get as 100%.  It was ten years and two remands from the BVA before I was finally awarded IU after I lost my job due to my disability.  The VA kept insisting that I was still employable.

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Also, if you complete VR&E.  You’ll likely be expected to return to work.  

AF retirement+Federal retirement+100P&T= find something else worth doing with your time.  The VA and service organizations could use your talents.  Congratulations too!!

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25 minutes ago, vetquest said:

If you get 100% P&T there is no reason to pursue IU.  I believe if you retire they will not allow IU.  IU is for people who have lost their job or can not hold a job due to their service connected disability and is almost as hard to get as 100%.  It was ten years and two remands from the BVA before I was finally awarded IU after I lost my job due to my disability.  The VA kept insisting that I was still employable.

I agree with vetquest  with the exception a veteran can work up to age 72 if he chooses too so depends oh how long the vet wanted to work ? I think its 50/50 on the IU  or the100% scheduler  although the 100% scheduler rating is a better all around rating...(jmo)

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55 minutes ago, vetquest said:

I believe if you retire they will not allow IU.

@vetquest & @paulstrgn

this is one of the areas that VA makes murky by not following its own rules.

Here is the MR21-1 on that exact situation.


https://www.knowva.ebenefits.va.gov/system/templates/selfservice/va_ssnew/help/customer/locale/en-US/portal/554400000001018/content/554400000014564/M21-1,-Part-IV,-Subpart-ii,-Chapter-2,-Section-F---Compensation-Based-on-Individual-Unemployability-(IU)#2

IV.ii.2.F.4.c. Determining the Effect of SC Disabilities on Employability
    
    
Determine whether the severity of the SC disabilities precludes the Veteran from securing or following substantially gainful employment.
 
The following factors have no bearing on a determination of whether SC disability renders a Veteran unemployable:

    age
    NSC disabilities
    injuries occurring after military service
    availability of work, or
    voluntary withdrawal from the labor market.

IV.ii.2.F.4.e.  Considering Occupational History in IU Claims
        
A Veteran’s occupational history is not determinative of the outcome of a claim for IU unless the Veteran is currently gainfully employed.  However, occupational history is a factor that must be weighed in decision making.  In weighing the relevance of occupational history in claims for IU, consider the factors below.

    When a Veteran is currently working or the evidence shows the Veteran is capable of working but unemployed, determine whether the ability to sustain employment is marginal as discussed at M21-1, Part IV, Subpart ii, 2.F.1.d and e.
    Consider the difference between unemployment and unemployability as discussed at M21-1, Part IV, Subpart ii, 2.F.1.b.
    Voluntary retirement is not necessarily determinative of the outcome of an IU decision.  The underlying impact of the Veteran’s disabilities on the discontinuation of work is the relevant determination.
    As noted in M21-1, Part IV, Subpart ii, 2.F.2.i, SSA decisions are not determinative of the outcome of IU decisions.  However, a Veteran’s application for and/or receipt of SSA disability benefits is a factor to weigh in decision making.
    IU may be granted on a temporary basis as noted in M21-1, Part IV, Subpart ii, 2.F.4.g.
    When a Veteran is self-employed, follow the procedures at M21-1, Part IV, Subpart ii, 2.F.3.

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, MPsgt said:

Also, if you complete VR&E.  You’ll likely be expected to return to work

@MPsgt & @paulstrgn

That is a good point! I will say that the individuals context and other disabilities play into that factor.

So Paulstrgn has to visualize the scenario and evaluate it himself. 

consider if he gets TDIU and it is P&T.

The P&T is not likely off the bat. maybe in 2 or 3 years. If it is likely in the raters mind to be P&T they are likely to bump to 100% schedular P&T than leave him in suspense simply because of their duty to maximize a veterans benefits.

Being 100% schedular P&T does NOT automatically preclude Voc Rehab. A schedular vet can earn as much as they want too while a TDIU vet is limited to the annual national poverty level wage for a single person (no matter how many dependents you have) so schedular is much better.

The MR21-1 as I posted elsewhere in this thread says age and withdrawal from the workforce, and retirement are NOT to be considered in a TDIU claim. (VA often ignores that but they are not supposed to)

Suppose he applies for and gets VR&E to send him to college for 48 months. His TDIU pays the entire time plus the stipend. That's a nice extra chunk on its own.

Consider his 90% rating now and what it is likely to be in 4 years. There is a good bet his degenerating conditions will continue to degenerate in that time.

Consider that to reduce/remove the TDIU rating they either have to bump him to 100% schedular, OR after he finishes college, and finds a job, has to perform at that job for at least a year before the VA can reduce the TDIU. Even then they have go through the process, give notice, have examinations and C&P's etc.

Paul will then be what? 60ish? are they really likely to send him for all those exams, just based on age it will be less likely than for a 30 year old in the same boat after VR&E.

It is all up to Paul what he wants to do, but in my book if you can get the VocRehab, get the stipend and get your degree, then it is worth considering. I know I would do it in a heartbeat and add yet another degree to my collection.

Just food for thought

Edited by GeekySquid
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