Research reveals that 24% of veterans have a service-related disability, affecting their quality of life considerably. Fortunately, the Department of Veteran Affairs compensates veterans for disabilities and illnesses incurred when serving in the military. The amounts the veterans receive depend on the severity and rating of the disability and other factors like the number of dependents. Whether you are a veteran or a loved one and you want to learn more about VA disability claims, read on to learn the top five claims.
1. Mental Health Conditions
Many veterans battle mental health conditions, a clear indication that not all scars are visible. Common mental health conditions for this populace are depression, anxiety, PSTD, suicidality, and military sexual trauma.
An article published in BMJ journals affirms that the prevalence of depression among veterans is 18%, substance abuse 17%, anxiety 15%, and PSTD 3%. Similarly, the US Department of Veteran Affairs declares that 7% of veterans will experience PTSD in their lifetime due to combat, life-threatening experiences, and training accidents.
Veterans with mental health conditions will likely attain high disability ratings and, consequently, more compensation. In fact, 4 out of 10 veterans filing a mental health disability claim receive a 70% or higher rating.
It is one of the rampant ear-associated disabilities among veterans due to exposure to loud noises, such as explosions and firing weapons without protective gear. Victims hear inexistent sounds like hissing, clicking, ringing, and humming, affecting their mood, concentration, and sleep. Typically, veterans with this disability get a 10% rating, which may increase if you have other service-related health problems.
They are prominent VA claims with ratings of between 10 and 80%. Approximately one million veterans have VA ratings for scars. Common scar types include
- Burn scars from heat or fire exposure
- Surgical scars
- Trauma scars due to physical injuries
- Keloid scars
Although most scars are cosmetic, they may result in chronic pain, mental distress, and impaired mobility. If your scar is painful, disfiguring, or hinders your mobility, you can apply for VA disability claims and rating. The VA rating for scars depends on the scar’s severity, location, and symptoms.
Many veterans file disability claims for migraines, whether occurring alone or with other conditions like TBI and PTSD. Migraines are regarded as high-value claims and can fetch up to a 30% rating. When applying for this claim, veterans should provide all information related to the condition and those aggravating it to maximize ratings.
Veterans with this disability report throbbing pain, dizziness, nausea, and sensitivity to sound and light. They may also feel a pulsing sensation on one side of the head and intense pain lasting hours or even days. The headaches are prostrating, forcing them to lie down for the attack to pass. Migraines affect veterans’ capacity to work and enjoy life.
5. Presumptive Disorders
To file a VA claim, veterans must prove their disability or illness is service-related. However, there are presumptive disorders that don’t require specific evidence since they are rampant among veterans in specific situations and are undoubtedly connected with active duty and service.
For instance, VA considers respiratory cancer, Parkinson’s disease, soft tissue sarcoma, Hodgkin’s disease, Type 2 diabetes, and ischemic heart disease presumptive for veterans serving in the Vietnam War due to Agent Orange exposure. These veterans can get high ratings and their claims approved without the hassle of proving service connection.
While veterans are symbols of strength, honor, and patriotism, they have numerous disabilities that hinder their day-to-day life and ability to secure employment. Luckily, they’re liable for VA disability compensation as long as they prove their disability emanated from active service and provide objective medical evidence for the claim.