Episode 37: The 5-Year, 10-Year and 20-Year Rule
The Veterans Voice podcast returns with host Amanda L. Mineer, and this episode is all about VA disability claim rules following questions from live callers.
Did you know when you go to file a VA disability claim, you can be approved for either the 5-Year Rule, the 10-Year Rule or the 20-Year Rule?
The 5-Year Rule is for Veterans who were honorably discharged from service within the past 5 years. If you qualify, the VA will automatically grant a service connection for any health condition that is found during a VA medical examination to be related to your military service, even if there’s no clear evidence of a connection.
The 10-Year Rule is for Veterans who were honorably discharged more than five years ago but less than 10 years ago. To use this rule, you must show that your health condition began (or worsened) during active military service.
The 20-Year Rule is for Veterans who were honorably discharged more than 10 years ago. To use this rule, you must show that your health condition began (or worsened) during active military service or within one year from your discharge date.
While she waits for live callers to join with their questions, Amanda takes us into an example of the VA disability claims process.
Let’s say you’re a veteran who injured your back or knee and have some PTSD from serving in Iraq. You go to the VA and see a doctor. The doctor gives you a percentage of disability for each condition based on how severe it is.
For example, your back may be 20 percent disabled, your knee 30 percent disabled, and your PTSD 40 percent disabled. However, the combined rating is not simply the sum of these percentages. The VA has a special formula that they use to calculate the combined rating.
The combined disability rating is 70 percent, meaning you are considered 70 percent disabled by the VA.
This 70 percent combined disability rating entitles you to monthly VA compensation. The amount of this compensation is based on your income, dependents and whether or not you have any service-connected disabilities.
The podcast continues with a deep dive into these rules and how they affect veterans specifically. Amanda takes several live calls where she helps veterans determine if they have a case to present to the VA and what the outcome of that case may perhaps be.
If you have a service-connected disability, you may also be eligible for health care and other VA benefits. If you have any questions about your disability rating or benefits, you should contact Veterans Law Group. We can help you understand your rights and options and can represent you in appeals if necessary.