Calculate your combined VA disability rating
COMBINED DISABILITY PERCENTAGE
YOUR MONTHLY PAYMENT
Click on a point on the body and then use sliders to input your rating
Head Trauma and Mental
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a common injury found in combat veterans. TBI is defined as a disruption of brain function as a result of a blow or jolt to the head. Symptoms include memory loss, headaches, dizziness, sleep disturbances, vision changes and loss of consciousness.
Long term effects of TBI can also include cognitive, behavioral and emotional issues, such as the inability to control anger or exhibiting a lack of initiative. The severity of your symptoms may fluctuate and will vary for each person. Your disability rating will be based on the current presence of TBI at the time you make a claim. VA rates TBI at 0, 10, 40, 70 and 100 percent.
A range of mental illnesses can also qualify for VA disability as long as it is a result from an incident during your military service or, if you had a pre-existing condition, which worsened from your time in the service.
Anxiety-related conditions like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are one of the most common eligible conditions. Mental disorders are rated in increments of 0, 10, 30, 50, 70 and 100 percent.
Examples of other mental conditions include:
– Somatoform disorders
Migraines are another serious neurological condition that can be caused by a brain injury, exposure to extremely loud noises, and stressful situations. The symptoms of migraines vary from pain and sensitivity to light or sound to nausea, vomiting, and blurred vision. Depending on the severity and frequency of your migraines, you can count on a rating of 0, 30 or 50 percent.
An estimated 315,000+ veterans receive disability compensation for eye-related conditions related to their time in the military. Eye conditions can result from injuries, damage from exposure, and illness contracted while in the service.
The VA rates eye-related conditions like loss of vision in one or both eyes, loss of peripheral vision, glaucoma, inflammatory issues and retinal issues. Veterans may also receive secondary service connections for eye conditions if they are either caused or aggravated by a service-connected condition already on record, such as lyme disease, which may result in optical disc edema and rheumatoid arthritis, which can cause thinning of the cornea.
VA rates eye conditions based on three main measurements: (1) Central visual acuity (2) visual field and (3) muscle function and will require an evaluation by an approved optometrist or ophthalmologist.
If one or more of your conditions exist in both eyes, then the VA combines the rating and adds an additional 10% to the combined rating. We calculate this automatically for you in our calculator.
Hearing loss in either ear or both ears as a result of loud noises during service is very common. If your hearing loss starts many years after leaving the service, you can still qualify for benefits if you can show that you were exposed to loud noise during your service.
Tinnitus, a ringing or buzzing in your ear that can be permanent or intermittent, is the most common VA disability. The VA rates tinnitus as 10% whether it’s for one or both ears. If you have>hearing loss, you are entitled to one rating for hearing loss and another for tinnitus.
Nasal & Respiratory
Sinusitis is a common condition that veterans experience as result of facial injuries or from pollutants and toxins emitted from burn pits. The condition blocks mucous in the nose from draining and causes a stuffiness in the nose and eye swelling.
Symptoms also include:
Difficulty breathing, tenderness and pain around the eyes, cheeks and forehead, reduced sense of smell and taste, cough and teeth pain. VA rating for sinusitis is 0, 10, 30 and 50 percent, with the most severe presenting as near constant episodes.
Other respiratory conditions that may have resulted from an event, injury or illness during your time at service include:
Skin and Scars
Veterans can receive ratings for a number of skin conditions and is generally based on the amount of skin on the body that is affected. Ratings are generally 0, 10, 30, and 60 percent.The most common skin conditions include:
Scars, including burn scars are the sixth most common service-connected disability according to the VA. To qualify for disability compensation, you must have at least one scar that is unstable, painful or both. Other factors include the total size of the scar, its shape, the areas on the body it affects, any limitation of motion and if it adheres to any underlying tissue.
A separate grading system for scars factors in the “characteristics of disfigurement” and refers to 8 specific qualities that classify the scar as disfiguring, which include a scar size of 5 inches or more and exhibits abnormal skin texture for a total area of 6 square inches.
Scars or disfigurement on the head, face or neck are rated based on skin loss and the number of facial features that have been disfigured and receive ratings of 10, 30, 50 or 80 percent.
Normally the VA gives a single rating for conditions related to the shoulder and upper arm. Common shoulder conditions in the line of service can occur from lifting or transporting heavy objects or from physical training. Shoulder injuries in combat can be the result of forceful blow, or a fall or accident.
Examples of other shoulder conditions that can qualify for benefits are:
– Shoulder dislocationv
VA ratings are based on limitation of motion for specific muscles that are affected. A rating of 0 to 40 percent corresponds to slight, moderate, moderately severe, and severe. In some cases, the VA gives a separate rating for your dominant and non-dominant arm. For shoulder replacements, the minimum VA rating is 30 percent for the dominant arm and 20 percent for the non-dominant arm and can go as high as 50 or 60 percent.
If you suffer from a disability in both shoulders/upper arms, you may quality for an additional 10%.
Optional: Which is your dominant side?
Elbow, forearm and hand injuries are common in training, combat as well as in non-combat roles. There can be conditions and diseases related to the muscles, nerves, tendons, ligaments, joints, and bones. The VA takes into the account how limited or excessive your range of motion is, the level of instability, any loss of sensation and the level of pain.
Most importantly, the VA assigns higher ratings if the condition affects your dominant side. We calculate this for you if you answer the optional question. If you suffer from a disability in both arms, you will receive a 10% bilateral rating, which is automatically calculated in the VCU calculator.
Common examples of elbow, forearm and hand conditions include:
VA ratings for the hip, knee, ankle and foot must be a result of an event, injury or illness that occurred during your time in the service. You may have landed incorrectly on your angle from a jump, for example. In some cases, you may have aggravated a condition you had before joining the service or you may have developed a secondary condition as a result of another service-related disability. Developing a knee condition as a result of a spinal injury, for example.
Ratings will depend on the type of injury, the severity, the range of motion and the level of pain.If you have a disability that affects both legs, you will receive an additional 10% bilateral rating. We automatically calculate the bilateral rating in the calculator.
Common leg injuries and conditions include:
Neck and Cervical Spine
The neck refers to orthopedic conditions that affect the cervical spine, which are the top seven vertebrae separated by intervertebral discs. The VA provides disability o veterans who have chronic neck pain due to an event or injury during time in the service or for a pre-existing neck condition that was aggravated in the military.
Subjective complaints of neck pain don’t often qualify, so you’ll need to show some level of impairment or complete loss of normal function of your neck. Based on the level of severity, VA ratings are typically 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 or 100 percent.
Common types of neck injuries include:
Back and Thoracolumbar Spine
Chronic back pain can hinder your ability to work or even perform basic activities. The back covers both the middle and lower back and includes the thoracolumbar spine (also known as TLS), which is composed of several types of vertebrae. You can receive compensation for debilitating and degenerative back pain, even without needing to prove an underlying condition.
There are also a number of back conditions that affect the vertebrae, muscles, tendons and ligaments of the back. You’ll need to link them to an event or injury during your time in the military. In general, the more frequent the pain and restriction of motion in your back, the higher the rating will be, ranging from 10 to 100 percent. A complete stiffening of the entire spine qualifies for 100 percent.
Common types of back and spinal conditions:
Marital Status & Dependents
Answer the questions below to see how they affect your rating
HOW MANY DEPENDENT CHILDREN DO YOU HAVE UNDER THE AGE OF 18?
HOW MANY DEPENDENT CHILDREN DO YOU HAVE BETWEEN 18 AND 24?
ARE YOU SINGLE OR MARRIED?
DOES YOUR SPOUSE RECEIVE AID AND ATTANDANCE?
ANY DEPENDENT PARENTS?
HOW WE CAN HELP
YOUR VA DISABILITY RATING IS X%
AND MONTHLY PAYMENT IS $0.00
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The Department of Veteran Affairs has a special system of rates that determine the disability compensation and other benefits that a Veteran is entitled to. Calculating VA rates is pretty simple when you only have one service-related disability. In this case, the single rate is your overall combined rate.
In most cases, however, Veterans develop various conditions that are often interconnected, having a significant impact on their health and lifestyle. Each service-related disability is assigned a rating from 0% to 100% in increments of 10 so that’s 10%, 20%, 30%, etc. The percentage will depend on the severity of the symptoms and effect on the Veterans ability to work, take care of themselves and their families.
Assessing the Combined VA Rate
A Veteran can have multiple service-related conditions in one or more areas of the body. For example, on your left arm you can have a 10% disability for an elbow injury and a 20% disability rating for a wrist injury. The VA assesses these conditions and gives you one overall rating called the combined VA rating, which is then assigned a monthly dollar value.
One of the challenges in assessing the combined VA rate is that Veterans are often unaware that they are experiencing related ailments simultaneously. Also the process of identifying and categorizing a service-related condition based on the VA’s comprehensive schedule of disabilities requires a trained professional.
Secondly, the math to determine the combined VA rating math is not straightforward. So, even if you know of all the conditions that you are entitled to receive compensation for, simply adding up the percentage of each condition will not necessarily result in an accurate combined VA rating.
How Does the VA Math work
Before you calculate your combined VA ratings, two essential things to remember are:
- The VA always starts from 100%, which represents a fully healthy person, and then factors in the condition with the highest rate first. All the other conditions will follow in order, decreasing the level of able-bodiness
- In the final math, all the numbers will be rounded to the nearest 10%. This means that if you come up with a combined disability rate of 52%, the final combined rating will be 50%
Example of Calculating Combined VA Rating
Now let`s take a look at a basic example to see how those principles work in practice.
Suppose you have a primary service-related disability with a 30% rate. Technically, this means you are 30% disabled and 70% non-disabled.
Then you discover that you also have a secondary disability with a lower 20% rate. This 20% disability affects your 70% non-disabled rate, and uses the formula 20% X 70% = 14%
Adding this 14% to the initial 30% disability rate, gives you a 44% rate. The final result is rounded down to 40%, which will be your final combined VA rating.
What is the VA Bilateral Factor and How Is It Calculated
If a service-related disability or injury affects the limbs, such as both arms and/or legs, or the paired skeletal muscles, the Bilateral Factor comes into play. A 10% additional disability is applied to the combined disability rating, which may increase your final rate dramatically.
For example, let’s say you have a service-related condition that affects both of your arms and you received a combined rating of 60%. In this case, we calculate the Bilateral Factor as 60% X 10% = 6%.
Add the Bilateral Factor to the VA combined rate: 60% + 6% = 66%. Then round this number to the nearest 10, resulting in a final combined rating of 70%.
How to Combine Both Bilateral and Non-Bilateral Conditions
In this case, the Bilateral Factor applies only to the bilateral conditions. Let’s see how this works in another example.
If you have a spinal condition with a 40% rating and a Bilateral condition on both legs that combine to a 32% rate, how do you calculate the overall combined rating?
- Calculate the Bilateral Factor:
32% X 10% = 3.2%
- Add 3.2% to rate of Bilateral conditions and round to the nearest whole number:
32% + 3.2% = 35.2% and rounds to 35%
- Combine the 40% spinal condition with Bilateral conditions at 35%:
35% X 60% (non-disability) = 21%
- Add both rates:
40% + 21% = 61%
- Round the total to the nearest 10%:
61% rounds to 60%
We have provided some simple examples in the information above, but you can see that calculating your combined VA rate is an involved process.
With VCU’s calculator, we make it easy.
We also make the process of identifying affected areas of the body as visual as possible and provide some specific guidelines about how the VA rates the most common service-related mental conditions, and internal and external ailments, injuries, and disorders.
You can add up to 5 service-related conditions for each area of the body using easy-to-use sliders.
Our VCU calculator also automatically factors in the additional 10% for Bilateral conditions. Unlike most other VA calculators, we also show you how a condition affecting your dominant hand/arm/shoulder influences your rating. In most cases, a condition on your dominant side garners an additional 10% rating.
You can also adjust additional parameters like your marriage status and number of children to show you how these factors affect your monthly disability compensation and benefits.
We also use the most current VA rates, which are normally adjusted annually.
View the VA’s official list and ratings of over 900 service-related disabilities for all major systems of the human body.
View the a table with monthly payment amounts based on the VA disability rating and number of dependents. Also find compensation rates for the last three years.
The VA provides an alternative way for you to calculate the combined VA rating using a series of simple tables.
We provide detailed and the most current updates about everything related to VA disability benefits.