One of the questions we get the most is, “How can I get a 100 VA rating?”
As a disabled veteran, you’ve given your health to the country you served and part of what you’ve been promised in return is that the military would take care of you.
So we have put together this article to help you get the absolute most out of your VA Disability Claim, in order that you can fully get all you deserve for the condition you’ve suffered from because of your time in service.
Remember there are many different factors in play to determine whether you will qualify for a VA disability rating and the most possible benefits. Because of this, there are also a few different ways to get to 100% rating.
TOP 4 Tips to Getting a 100% VA Disability Rating
1. 100% P&T
This is when you have a single condition that is considered severe enough to be rated Permanent and Total (100% P&T). It also means that your conditions are not expected to improve.
For example, blindness in both eyes would be considered 100% P&T, as would being permanently bedridden.
2. 100% Schedular Rating
Similar to having a 100% P&T rating, with the difference being that the VA may believe you can improve in the future. You can receive a 100 VA rating for having the most severe symptoms of a number of different disabilities. There are also instances where you can automatically receive a 100% rating, such as having a live diagnosis of cancer
3. Secondary Service Connection
In the case that your main disability didn’t qualify for a 100% VA disability rating, it is possible to make a claim for a secondary condition that may be connected to your first condition.
A secondary service connection will require a “showing of causation” which shows the secondary disability to be “proximately due to” or “proximately aggravated by” your other service-connected disability.
Once you are able to do this, the rating for your secondary condition will be added to the rating of your first condition. With a high enough rating for both, it is possible to get your full 100% rating.
4. Total Disability Based on Individual Unemployability (TDIU)
TDIU is a way to be compensated at the VA’s 100% disability rate even without having received a VA rating of 100% This can be awarded when a veteran is unable to secure substantially gainful employment because of their service-connected conditions.
A veteran may qualify under 38 CFR § 4.16(a) if:
– They have one service-connected disability rated 60 percent or more
– They have at least two service-connected conditions, with a combined rating of at least 70 percent.
Tips to Getting a 100% VA Disability Rating
Now that you know there are multiple ways to get the full amount of compensation you DESERVE, here are a few tips to help you maximize your claim on the way to a 100% rating.
Document your Symptoms by Using MyHealtheVet
MyHealtheVet is available as an option for veteran to connect directly to your VA healthcare provider. In addition, your messages go straight to your VA medical records!
With this service, you can document the symptoms of your disability fully, making it easier for when you do file or re-file.
To use this service, create an account and begin the conversations with your health provider. You can keep your medical records updated which will help when gathering documents to file.
To log onto MyHealtheVet, click here.
Make a High-Value VA Disability Claim the Priority
Any disability with a greater chance of being rated at 30% or above is considered a “high-value” VA claim. They are a strong way to increase your disability rating.
Conditions that would be considered “high-value” include many mental health conditions like PTSD, major depressive disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder. Other conditions considered “high-value” would be sleep apnea, migraines, and respiratory conditions, among others.
If you are suffering from any of these conditions, whether by itself or along with other conditions, by making a high-value condition the focus of your claim you have a better chance to receive a 100% rating. These claims are also the most helpful as secondary conditions.
Complete DBQ Forms for Conditions that are Already Service-Connected
A Disability Benefits Questionnaire Review (DBQ) form is actually the BEST way to increase a VA disability rating to a 100 VA rating is through a disability which has already been service-connected.
You can get a DBQ by asking your medical provider. By filling this form out you can break down your VA disability to be reviewed by VA raters. The form will ask for your current medical diagnosis and symptoms.
Just by doing a good job on this form and submitting it, you may be able to get your VA rating increased!
Of course, the odds are high that you’ll still have to get a C&P exam, but the DBQ will have already gotten professional medical information to the VA, which may help the chances of your claim.
Use Credible Nexus Letters to File for a Secondary Service Connection
We addressed this earlier, but it’s still important to remember that one of the best ways to get to 100% disability is to make sure all the conditions you are experiencing are recognized by the VA.
To prove a secondary condition you must have a medical diagnosis, evidence of a primary service-connected disability, and then a medical nexus that establishes the connection to your primary disability and your other condition.
To read our research on the top 5 doctors to write a nexus letter, click HERE!
One of the biggest benefits of pursuing a secondary service connection in a VA disability claim is that it can be easier to fulfill the nexus requirement, especially if you have been discharged for over a year.
Prepare to Have a Successful C& P Exam
Many consider the Compensation and Pension exam (C&P) to be the single more important step in the VA claim process.
Even if you do everything else right, it’s possible to hurt your VA claim substantially by having a bad C&P Exam. The reality is that most VA raters will make your C&P exam the main focus of their determination of your claim.
Therefore, because this is so important, you must be prepared! Here are some tips to help make sure you get the most out of your C&P exam:
– Know your medical records. Education about your own conditions and your history with them is always the most important tool you can possess.
– Know the Schedule for Rating Disabilities for your condition. This can help you to have the right language needed for describing your condition in order to get the rating you deserve.
– Explain what your worst days are like.
– Know your stressors and be prepared to explain them.
– Prepare to share the details of your life. You are going to be asked about your life before the military, during, and after. You will be expected to know the details that matter concerning your condition, life before it, how you suffered it during your time in the military, and what life has been like since.
For more detail about how to nail getting a 100% VA rating, check out this article HERE.
The Road to a 100 VA Rating
There are many ways to get a 100% VA disability rating. While the easiest way is to get rated 100% for your primary condition the first time, it is still possible to get your rating increased as your condition progresses.
Whether you’re filing a claim for the first time, or if you are working to increase a rating you’ve already received, we have a team of Insiders that would be thrilled to help you!
If you’re feeling discouraged, don’t give up! Our team has seen many veterans increase their ratings. The difference between a lower rating and 100% is substantial!
The road to 100% Disability is still open for many veterans who don’t know it. You can still get there!