As a disabled Veteran, getting VA disability benefits isn’t just about you, it’s also about the well-being of your loved ones.
When you have a disability connected to your military service, the VA assigns you a rating to determine the amount of compensation you can receive.
But the ripple effects of your service-related disability extend to your family – especially your spouse and dependents – who may also be eligible for additional benefits.
Contact a Veterans disability benefits lawyer at Berry Law today for a free consultation to ensure both you and your family members are receiving all the VA benefits you need.
Spouses of Veterans who have a 100 percent disability rating following active duty service can receive certain benefits to help with the overall challenges that may come with having a disability.
The Veteran of their spouse must submit an application in order to receive additional spousal benefits.
This process can take a while, given the time it takes to go over everything to make sure that you qualify. When approaching large applications like this, it is always best to have a team at your side.
When people go about this process alone, knowing all the requirements for a particular application can be challenging. It should not be as complicated as it is, but with our help at Berry Law, we can help you receive the benefits you deserve.
We will ensure that you provide all of the necessary information that the VA requires and guarantee that you get it in on time.
Many benefits are included when you are a spouse of a Veteran rated at a 100 percent combined disability rating for a service-related injury or multiple service-related injuries.
Whether it is financial benefits, attendance benefits, or health benefits, you may be surprised to find the number of benefits you and your spouse can receive.
These benefits can help ease some of the burdens of caring for those with a disability. You must know which benefits you qualify for and how you can use them.
You may already know about survivor benefits for spouses who died during military service, such as the tax-free monetary benefit called Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), burial benefits, and survivors’ pension. Did you know that the spouses of disabled active-duty veterans can also receive financial benefits?
All you have to do is receive additional monthly compensation for benefits is apply for dependent benefits. You can do this through your VA.gov account or by filling and sending a VA Form to the VA.
The monthly payments a Veteran will receive depend on how many dependents, including their spouse, they have in the household. For a 100 percent disabled vet, as of 2023, the payments are the following:
Spouses of disabled Veterans must tell the VA that they are married and include any children for them to be added to your award. The VA defines a dependent as:
As a spouse of a Veteran, you and your children may also be eligible for certain health benefits based on certain criteria.
The health care coverage comes through the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA). CHAMPVA helps to share the cost of healthcare services with the VA.
As long as you meet the requirements, you will be reimbursed for prescription medications, medical equipment, inpatient and outpatient services, nursing care, and mental health care.
Here are the specific eligibility requirements you need to maintain to receive these health benefits:
Children who are physically or mentally disabled and unable to support themselves can stay under CHAMPVA even if they are above the normal age limit.
Check any of the requirements for your children that fall under this category when you apply for further health benefits after your disabled child turns 18.
When reading this, you may be wondering what CHAMPVA entails.
If you are eligible for CHAMPVA each CHAMPVA- eligible family member will receive an identification card. CHAMPVA covers medically necessary health care services, including ambulance service, ambulatory surgery, durable medical equipment, family planning and maternity, hospice, inpatient services, mental health services, outpatient services, pharmacy, skilled nursing care, and transplants.
There are no premiums when you receive health care services from CHAMPVA, and the coverage is free. However, there are deductibles and co-pays.
There is an overall deductible of $50 a year for individuals and $100 a year for families. Once the participant pays that, they will pay 25 percent of the covered amount.
CHAMPVA is available for current spouses, dependent children, surviving spouses who are not remarried, and surviving unmarried children either under 18 or between 18 and 23 and enrolled in school.
If you are eligible for CHAMPVA, you cannot receive other health benefits such as TRICARE or CHAMPUS.
Make sure to go over all that is covered and not covered by your health benefits so you can use one that best suits your needs.
Even if your spouse is a disabled Veteran injured in the line of duty, you do not have to overlook your education or your children’s.
You may be eligible for VA education benefits under Dependents’ Educational Assistance (DEA), also called Chapter 35 benefits.
These benefits are available if our spouse is 100 percent service-connected permanent and total, in addition to a few other considerations.
The VA gives benefits for education up to three years and nine months. Your children can use the benefits to pursue a degree, certificate, apprenticeship, or job training program. You could even use it for correspondence courses if you would like.
Your current state of residence may provide certain benefits depending on where you live.
These benefits include employment assistance, property tax exemptions, and even free counseling. The benefits will vary from state to state, so check with the Department of Veterans Assistance to know what your benefits include.
Sometimes, certain terminology and criteria can be confusing when it comes to VA benefits. Does it have to be a permanent disability to be given a 100 percent disability rating? No, and here is why.
When a Veteran receives a 100 percent disability rating, it does not mean that they will be permanently in this condition.
A Veteran only receives a permanent disability rating when the medical evidence shows they will have that disability for the remainder of their life. For the VA, total and permanent disability are two different categories.
An example of a temporary total disability would be when a Veteran goes through surgery. Sometimes, this leaves the Veterans incapable of caring for themselves.
If this is the case, the Veteran may receive benefits for being 100 percent disabled, but only until they recover. In these scenarios, the benefits will not last the Veteran’s lifetime.
Just because a Veteran may be permanently disabled does not mean that they receive a total disability rating. A Veteran must be permanently and totally disabled to receive the benefits of both.
If you feel you are not getting the benefits you deserve due to a service-connected injury, reach out to a professional who can help along the way.
Do not travel this journey alone. Veterans often do not feel that the VA gave them the proper rating for their disability. This may have to do with the status of the disability or a lack of evidence in determining the disability’s severity.
You can appeal a decision by the VA if you feel that is the best possible route to secure the necessary benefits, and a team of legal professionals can help. At Berry Law, we will help you get the rating and benefits you deserve.
Certain challenges come with being a spouse of a Veteran who is 100 percent disabled. Fortunately, there are many VA benefits for spouses to help alleviate some of the burden.
With financial, health, education, and state-related benefits, you can help yourself and your family along the way.
If you believe that you are not receiving all the benefits you could be receiving, contact a Veterans disability lawyer at Berry Law and find out how we can help.
Call (888) 883-2483 or contact an attorney online to answer any questions and start the process of VA disability compensation for your spouse and family.
Our monthly newsletter features about important and up-to-date veterans' law news, keeping you informed about the changes that matter.