Skip to content

July 16, 2019

Life Impact, what you didn’t know you needed to win your VA Claim

Last updated on December 23, 2022

I hope you enjoy reading this blog post.

If you want to learn how to implement these strategies to get the VA benefits you deserve, click here to speak with a VA claim expert for free.

In this blog, we are going to discuss why it is crucial to be able to explain to the VA how your disability impacts your life in order to win your VA Claim. It is not enough to have a disability; the VA needs to know specifically how it affects your life. Proving the life impact of your disability is incredibility important to get the compensation you deserve.

Let’s start this discussion off honestly; the VA does not care that you have a disability. There, I said it. Now that that is out in the open, we can move forward. Many veterans believe that because they have a disability that they will be automatically compensated for it. Life impact, that is what the VA looks for when they decide on your compensation. 

What is life impact?

I am going to use PTSD as an example of disability and explain the importance of that life impact. We see this a lot with veterans, they have served one or more combat tours, and after submitting their claim for PTSD, they are denied by the VA. Well if you have followed us here at VA Claims Insider for any length of time, you will know there are several things the VA looks for before they award compensation for a claim. 

The first thing the VA must-see is the service connection.  Your DD214, any medals or awards you have, your military evaluations are all documents that support your service connection. That is evidence you were there so to speak. That is not enough, though! Many veterans stop there and assume at that point, they will be awarded PTSD. 

The second thing the VA needs to see is life impact. How does your PTSD affect your life today? There are two ways you as a veteran can prove that. Join our Elite Membership here with VA Claims Insider and invest in a mental health assessment. This provides you with a disability questionnaire and Nexus letter based on your military experience and medical history. Number two, know your story. This is all you. 

Mental Health Rating table out of the CFR-38.

Win Your VA Claim

What do I need to file

If you are submitting a PTSD claim, you need to understand where you fit into the above table. There are two areas of life impact the VA considers when deciding on a PTSD claim, Social and Occupational impairment. 

Social Impairment

Social impairment refers to areas in your personal life that are impacted because of your experiences and your PTSD today. Maybe before your combat tour, you enjoyed going to big family functions and events. Now, after returning home, you find yourself avoiding such activities. Perhaps they make you irritable or uncomfortable after a while. 

Functional Impairment

Functional impairment refers to areas in your professional or work life that are now impacted because of your experiences and PTSD. Maybe you used to enjoy weekly brainstorm sessions with your co-workers. Now, you find yourself getting angry when you listen to your co-workers talk about their lives, or perhaps you find yourself just yelling at the people you work with. 

Veterans might have one or both areas of impairment due to PTSD. Either way, if you are filing for a PTSD claim, you need to know your story. You need to be able to convey how PTSD impacts your life today. If you are not sure, ask your spouse or a family member. Ask them if you seem different, no one will know you better than your spouse! 

Buddy letters

A spousal letter or buddy letter. Two more great tools to correctly explain the life impact of a disability. These supporting documents go a long way to helping you explain to the VA the life impact. These documents should go hand in hand with your statement. 

We often have the veterans we work with, ask for templates for explaining the life impact of their disability. What I tell the clients I work with, I will help you with grammar and spelling, but this must be your story. Think about it, someone gives you a great write up, and you upload it with your claim in ebenefits. Then, fast forward two or three weeks later to your compensation and pension (C&P) exam. You are sitting there, and the examiner is reading through your documents, they ask you about your disability and how it impacts your life. How are you going to answer? You already know your own story, do not use someone else’s story. 

While we do have a personal statement generator, you still need to know your story cold.

There should be a flow to your story. This is what happened, I hurt my knee, this is what I used to be able to do. I used to run, hike, go with my family and spend the day at Disney World, etc. Now because of my disability, this is what I can no longer do; run, hike, walk for more than an hour with my family at Disney World, etc. Be specific! You can mention your pain, but that is not enough. Pain is subjective. Not being able to walk for more than an hour at a time, that is specific. 

Remember how to explain the life impact of your disability, and your next claim will be in the winning category! 

Deserve a HIGHER VA Rating?

Learn more about how VA Claims Insider can help you get the rating you DESERVE!
Speak with a VA Disability expert and start for FREE! 

About the Author

About VA Claims Insider

VA Claims Insider is an education-based coaching/consulting company. We’re here for disabled veterans exploring eligibility for increased VA disability benefits and who wish to learn more about that process. We also connect veterans with independent medical professionals in our referral network for medical examinations, disability evaluations, and credible independent medical opinions and nexus statements (medical nexus letters) for a wide range of disability conditions.

Related Articles

Featured Resources

Elite Membership

Dear Veteran,
Here’s the brutal truth about VA disability claims:

According to our data, 8/10 (80%) of veterans reading this message right now are underrated by the VA…

This means you do NOT currently have the VA disability rating and compensation YOU deserve, and you could be missing out on thousands of dollars of tax-free compensation and benefits each month.

As a fellow disabled Veteran this is shameful and I’m on a mission to change it.

Brian Reese here, Air Force service-disabled Veteran and Founder @ VA Claims Insider.

Since 2016, VA Claims Insider has helped thousands of Veterans just like you get the VA rating and compensation they deserve in less time.

If accepted into our ELITE membership program, you’ll get free up-front access and permission to use $13,119 worth of proprietary VA claim resources, including access to our network of independent medical professionals for medical examinations, disability evaluations, and credible Medical Nexus Letters, which could help you get a HIGHER VA rating in LESS time.

It’s FREE to get started, so click “Go Elite Now” below to complete our 3-step intake process.

  1. Complete Basic Information
  2. Sign Members Agreement
  3. Join the Mastermind Group

If you’re stuck, frustrated, underrated, and currently rated between 0%-90%, VA Claims Insider Elite is for you!

Click “Go Elite Now” below to get started today and a member of our team will be in touch within minutes.

Go Elite Now!

Why Choose VA Claims Insider

You’ve exhausted your free resources

You're not alone. Thousands of other Veterans in our Community are here for you.

Veteran Community

You’re ready to get the rating you deserve

We know the pain of feeling stuck, frustrated, and alone, and we want to make this process as easy and painless as possible for you.

Explore Elite Membership

We win ONLY when YOU win

Hear from fellow Veterans just like you, with many of our Veteran Ambassadors having gone through our programs.

Schedule a Call

Fellow Veterans:

For a limited time, you can book a free, no-obligation VA Claim Discovery Call with one of our experts.

Book A Call

Fellow Veterans:

For a limited time, you can book a free, no-obligation VA Claim Discovery Call with one of our experts.

Book A Call