Friday, October 16, 2009

VA Individual Unemployability Claims, TDIU, IU

If a veteran can not perform gainful employment due to his or her service connected disabilities the the veteran can receive disability benefits at the rate of 100% even if the service connected disability or disabilities does not add up to 100%. A veteran can do this by applying for total disability based on individual unemployability. To be eligible for this type of claim a veteran in most cases would have to have one service connected disability rated at 60% or higher or if there is more than one disability then at least one disability must be rated at 40% and the additional disabilities must bring the total percentage to 70%. If a veteran does not meet these requirements they may still make a claim for IU based on extra schedular considerations. This means that even though they do not meet the rating criteria for IU if the veterans "picture is so exceptional or unusual as to reasonably raise the issue of extraschedular consideration."

The VA states that: "Total disability rating may be assigned, where the schedular rating is less than total, when the disabled person is, in the judgement of the rating agency, unable to secure or follow a substantial gainful occupation as a result of service connected disabilities." What this exactly means is less than clear. There are some things you can do to help yourself get IU. If you are found disabled by Social Security this can be helpful evidence if you were found disabled based on your service connected disabilities. However, the VA is not required to follow the SSA decision. You may also want to seek the assistance of a lawyer. Many times vocational expert evidence can help in showing you are not employable. For more information on VA individual unemployability visit my website on VA disability law.