How to Compute VA Disability

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VA disability is offered in two forms of VA monthly benefits: compensation and pension. Compensation is designed for veterans whose disability was directly related to or caused by their military service, while pension benefits are for veterans who have a low income and have a disability that prevents them from becoming gainfully employed. When you are awarded your VA disability, you get a certain disability percentage rating, which indicates how severe the Department of Veterans Affairs deems your disability and determines how much you will receive each month in VA disability benefits.

Locate your VA disability percentage rating. This is listed on the award letter that the VA sent you granting you either VA compensation or pension.

Find the VA benefits rate tables (see Resource). Locate the compensation rate tables if you were awarded compensation, and find the pension rate tables if you were awarded a pension. Click on the link listed under the current-year column next to your type of disability.

Locate your dependent status from the first column of the table (e.g., Veteran Alone, Veteran With Spouse Only). Find your disability percentage from the next columns. Where your dependent status row and your disability percentage rating column meet shows the amount of your monthly benefits.


  • Veterans with dependents receive more in monthly benefits than those who do not.

    If you have a pension, you must report any change in your income, including your spouse’s income. This affects how much you are awarded in VA pension benefits.