Va Total and Permanent Disability and Unemployment - (2023)

Receive your VA letter of permanent disability

Permanent and total disability (P&T)

Ideally, you will know if you are eligible for total and permanent disability benefits from the VA, which the VA will notify you in your first decision letter. However, if you feel you should qualify and the VA disagrees, you may need to submit an additional letter to convince them that you cannot work because of your disability.

Hiring legal counsel can help you demonstrate to the VA that you deserve TDIU or a 100 percent rating.

Assistance with complaints and appeals

As you can see from what we have described above, awarding a P&T rating requires a high burden of proof. You must meet the criteria for both a permanent and full disability assessment. If you think you meet these criteria, don't hesitate to file your claim with the VA or to appeal if the VA has denied your claim. You always have the opportunity to raise your case and we are here to help.

Contact us at 844-VET-LAWS orFill out our online formto begin processing your claim or complaint and receive the compensation you deserve.

What is my Tdiu expiry date?

This is the date your delivery of TDIU benefits begins. Determining the effective date of your TDIU claim can be difficult and often a problem. This is due to the nature of TDIU services.

Veterans can claim TDIU benefits by submitting the VA form21-8940. If you submitted this form to the VA, you may think that the effective date of the TDIU is attached to this form. But that is not true. Why? Because your TDIU is about an additional VA assessment that pays 100 percent compensation for a condition that is already service-connected. It is not a separate compensation claim.

Individual unemployment is a common reason for a veteran's right to VA compensation. Unemployment can also manifest itself over time in a service-dependent state. Therefore, your effective date (the date you become unemployed) can be determined by:

  • the date VA received your first claim for service connection, or
  • the date you first became unemployed due to a work-related disability
  • the date of your eligibility for a VA rating increase, or
  • from facts available in your file which is being decided.

In the following we explain different scenarios.

The TDIU effective date is derived from the service connection right:

the date VA received your claim for SC, or

the date on which it was first established that you were unemployed.

The TDIU effective date is the result of the right to an increased VA rating:

The date VA received your rating upgrade request, or

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What is permanent and total disability?

Another designation, known as permanent and total disability, applies to veterans whose disabilities are not expected to improve.

However, it is important to understand the definitions of permanent and total:

  • Permanent. This means that, based on medical evidence, it is reasonably certain that the disability will remain for the rest of the veteran's life. The age of veterans can be taken into account so that younger veterans are less likely to be considered permanently disabled.
  • Total. The VA uses an assessment plan to determine the extent to which the disability affects the veteran's ability to function. "Total" means the rating is 100%, meaning the veteran is completely or totally disabled.

It is possible for a veteran to have a total disability that is not permanent or a permanent disability of less than 100%. If the veteran has both permanent and total disability, the disability cannot be reduced and may be entitled to benefits other than monthly compensation.

What are individual disability benefits for total disability?

Va Total and Permanent Disability and Unemployment - (1)

Total disability based on individual benefits applies to veterans who are unable to maintain or obtain employment. They must not be able to work due to mental and physical disabilities. To receive benefits, these disabilities must be related to your seniority and considered service-related.

Secondary service-related benefits count towards your individual disability entitlement. For example, if a veteran was exposed to Agent Orange and developed diabetes, any medical condition caused by the diabetes is also considered service-related. TDIU benefits pay the same as a 100 percent VA disability rating. Veterans eligible for TDIU benefits may be paid more than $3,621.95 per month. There is additional compensation for veterans with dependent children and parents.

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Will I get my payment back for Tdiu?

Once you file your individual disability claim, it can take months or years to resolve your claim. If the VA gives the TDIU rating, what about all the time you waited and got no benefits at all? This can add up to many thousands of dollars.

The VA reimburses this and the payment is known as a TDIU retroactive payment or retroactive payment. Usually the VA pays this as a lump sum. The most important thing to do is to make sure that the VAdatedpay this repayment correctly.

The correct date for retroactive TDIU payments to start is thisThe effective dateand not the date you claimed the benefits. Remember that the effective date is the date you were first determined to be unemployed. The difference could be years before you submitted your application to the VA.

Myth #: You cannot work while receiving Tdiu

Since unemployment is included in the program's name, it is reasonable to assume that you will not be allowed to work at all while receiving TDIU benefits. However, veterans can work while receiving TDIU as long as their job is not countedessentially paid work. This means that you can work small jobs, temporary jobs or seasonal jobs and pay less than the poverty wage.

Veterans can earn higher wages if their position qualifies as suchprotected working environment. The definition of this term is determined on a case-by-case basis, but generally means that the position involves working for someone who makes additional accommodations for the veteran's disability. Often this is a friend or family member who allows for extra breaks, a flexible schedule, reduced productivity, or other accommodations that go beyond the legal requirements for disabled employees.

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How to get permanent and total disability from the VA

It is important to first determine whether your overall assessment is already considered valid and complete. It's not always easy to say. The VA rarely says specifically, "Your condition is considered permanent and complete," but there are ways to determine this.

The grade determination upon which the award is made may identify dependent parental support or dependent eligibilityChapter 35 DEAor language that no future exams are planned. If the veteran received the DEA award, they were awarded the permanent and full award. No scheduled audits also indicate a P&T rating.

If a veteran is assigned a 100% combined rating and believes they qualify for a permanent and full rating, the veteran can petition the VA for the permanent and full rating. To do this, they can simply write a letter to the VA applying for the benefit. It is also helpful to include medical records showing that the veteran's condition will not improve.

In addition, the veteran would also be entitled to:

How does the VA determine permanent and total disability (P&T)?

  • Free health care and prescription drugs
  • Educational assistance for relatives who entitle spouse and children to educational benefits
  • CHAMPVA Health insurance for spouses and children
  • DIC benefits to the spouse of a dependent under the age of 18 if the veteran dies either of 100% disability within 10 years or of disability after 10 years.

The veteran may also be eligible for several other benefits depending on their circumstances.

Also check:When can you apply for unemployment?

What is total disability? Individual unemployment

In contrast, the unplanned assessment concerns individual unemployment in the case of total disability. The veteran has a disability with a disability level of less than 100%. However, the VA Evaluator determined that his or her service-connected disability or combination of disabilities made the veteran unable to find or maintain substantial employment. If so, the evaluator assigns the veteran a TDIU rating. Her pay is 100% even though her disability is less than 100%.

Can veterans get IUs indefinitely?

The answer to this question is yes, no and maybe. IU can be assigned in several ways. An option is temporary. Obviously, this one won't last forever, so we won't go into detail about it. The area we want to focus on is the non-transient area.

When a veteran receives an IE, they may be subject to screening. For example, if you are awarded IU based on a score of 70 percentfor PTSDand later reduced to 50%, you would no longer be eligible for IU. There are situations where a veteran can be awarded IU indefinitely. It is often referred to as Total and Permanent or TDIU. This often happens when a veteran has lost a limb, but is not limited to such a situation. Even if you have had an IE for 20 years or more, you are unlikely to be screened. As with everything in the world, and especially with government, there are some exceptions.

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Application for individual early retirement in case of total disability

We strongly encourage you to take a lookLeaflet on individual unemploymentbefore you apply. Veterans who wish to apply for TDIU benefits must submit an initial application to the Veterans Administration. You should list all of your mental and physical impairments that you believe were caused or worsened by your service. Veterans should remember to list any secondary service-related impairments. If, for example, you have been exposed to Agent Orange and have diabetes, your high blood pressure can now also be considered service-related.

If you have questions about applying for TDIU benefits, you can always call our law office. We advise you free of charge on applying for TDIU benefits. There is no cost for assistance with the initial application process.

Does it help to be approved for one program if you already have the other?

Va Total and Permanent Disability and Unemployment - (2)

Previously, the answer was yes. If you were awarded VA disability benefits, your chances of being eligible for Social Security disability benefits were very high.

Unfortunately, as of 2017, the Social Security Administration changed its rules, stating that VA unemployment permits are not considered when processing a person's application for Social Security disability benefits.

However, the evidence you submitted to the VA Department will be used by the SSA to evaluate your Social Security disability claim.

The VA office will also not consider what you receiveSocial benefits in case of invalidity. This is because the SSA does not ask if the disabilities suffered were a result of military service. And the primary requirement for eligibility for VA leave is that your disability is service-connected.

It is common for a veteran to have both service-connected and non-service-connected disabilities. The veteran must therefore prove that a service-related disability is the cause of his unemployment.

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How do you qualify for 100 percent disability or individual unemployment?

A veteran can qualify for a 100 percent disability rating if they can document a service-connected disability rated at 100 percent disability. One way to qualify for IU is if you have a service-connected disability that makes you unable to work. This means that your disability must be severe enough to prevent you from doing any work, regardless of your education or experience.

To be considered for a 100 percent disability rating or individual unemployment, a person must demonstrate that they meet the eligibility requirementssocial security administrationsDefinition of disability. This definition implies a requirement that the individual cannot fulfillsignificant employmentbecause of their health condition. The SSA also considers a person's age, education and work experience when making its decision.

How do I get these benefits?

You must submit an application for disability benefits. When you apply, you must show that your disability prevents you from keeping a permanent job. Also look at your work history and education.Example:A veteran has a service-connected heart condition and a 60% disability. She was able to work until last year when she developed chest pain from physical activities such as walking or lifting boxes. Her doctor said she should retire as soon as possible. She applied for a higher disability benefit. We reviewed her work and education history and concluded that she was individually unemployed due to her service-connected disability. Therefore, we have increased her disability benefit to the same rate as a 100% disabled veteran.

If you are applying for a disability claim, you must also complete the following additional forms for individual disability benefits:

  • A veteran's claim for increased compensation due to unemployment

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Submit Va form 21

The DRO or Rating Claim Officer will automatically reject a claim for a file without the TDIU form. Although it doesn't seem right, it is the reality of how most VA regional offices handle TDIU claims. These forms are usually sent as part of a VCAA letter. However, it can also be downloaded from the VA's website. In general, it is important to knowhow to apply for a disabilityAdvantage.

Four ways a Virginia disability attorney can help

100% permanent and total VA disability and TDIU VA benefits

At VetLaw, ourVA Disability Attorneysare all accredited and can help you secure the benefits you may be entitled to by:

Total disability, individual unemployment andSocial security disability insuranceare separate programs with different entry requirements. It is possible for you to receive both types of compensation. However, earning TDIU does not automatically qualify you for SSDI. A separate application must be submitted for SSDI.

No. veterans withphysicaland ormental disabilitiesmay be entitled to permanent and full TDIU benefits. The requirements are the same for both types of disability, as you must have one or more work-related illnesses that prevent you from taking up and maintaining a significant job.

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How to apply for educational benefits

Check with the VA before starting your program to make sure your educational program is approved and reimbursable. Call the VA regional office in the state where you will be participating in your program.

CompleteApplication from relatives for VA training benefitsand submit it to the VA regional office in the state where you wish to attend school or training. If you are already in school, you must also ask the school or job for the exam and aForm for confirmation of registration. Submit the registration certificate together with your application.

Can the VA revoke my permanent and total disability classification?

Many veterans worry that the VA will downgrade their VA rating. Over time, most veterans will need to validate their disability to maintain their VA disability rating as is.

The good news with a P&T VA disability rating is that you no longer have to worry about a rating downgrade.

Once you are granted P&T status by the VA, your status stays with you for life.

In fact, P&T status is one of the seven types of protected VA disability status. With P&T status, the VA cannot remove your permanent and total disability rating unless the VA shows that you committed fraud in obtaining a VA rating. You will also no longer receive requests for compensation and pension review.


Most veterans are undervalued because of their disability and, as a result, do not receive the compensation they are entitled to. At VA Claims Insider, we help you understand and control the claims process so you receive the assessment and compensation you are legally entitled to.

Our processTakes the guesswork out of filing a VA disability claim and guides you every step of the way in building a fully-fledged claim so you can quickly increase your rating!

Contact us if you've submitted your VA disability claim and it was denied, received a bad review, or you're not sure how to get started! Take advantage of oneGRATIS VA Claim Discovery Call. Find out what you've been missing so you FINALLY get the disability rating and compensation you deserve!

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Are tdiu and ssdi connected?

You can receive SSDI benefitsForObtaining TDIU benefits. This leads to a common misunderstanding about TDIU and Social Security Disabilitythat you automatically qualify for a TDIU rating when you receive SSDI benefits.

It's not true. Social Security and Veterans Disability Benefits work independently. SSDI awards do not automatically prove entitlement to TDIU.

Many claims awarded SSDI by SSA are denied by VA for TDIU and vice versa. This also applies if both claims are based on the same official impairment.

A Social Security Compensation decision along with supporting evidence can certainly help demonstrate the strength of your TDIU claim. But SSDI is based on full disability. You must be fully disabled before you can receive SSDI payments.

As a veteran, you are entitled to unemployment benefits if you are partially disabled. The VA rating system is based on percentages, with each SC condition having a percentage. These individual scores are tallied using a complex formula to arrive at an overall VA disability score.


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