One of the government entities that provides disability benefits to people is the Department of Veterans Affairs. This department helps veterans access several different programs that provide various types of benefits, ranging from co-payment of cash benefits to providing help with work and vocational training. If you are a veteran who served in the U.S. military, you are eligible to receive many of these benefits.
VA Disability Compensation
The VA Disability Compensation program pays monthly benefits to veterans who are disabled and meet all eligibility requirements. One requirement is that you must have received honorable discharge from service lasting at least 90 days. You must also have served for at least one day during a war period. To be considered an eligible disabled veteran, your disability must be a consequence of your service period. This applies if you became disabled while serving or if you had a condition that was made worse while in service.
Duration of Benefits
If you qualify to receive VA disability benefits, you receive a specific amount of money every month to help you with your expenses. The amount of benefits you receive varies according to the severity of your disability. Veterans who have severe conditions receive higher benefits than veterans with less severe disabilities. Severity is determined by your ability to perform daily activities without significant difficulty. The main factor that determines the duration of your benefits is your disability. If your disability improves with time, either because you are having successful treatment or because your condition was not permanent, your benefits decrease until you are no longer eligible to receive them. If your disability never improves or if it gets worse, your benefits actually increase and continue for the duration of your life.
Your behavior while receiving VA disability benefits also influences the duration of your benefits. If you commit crimes and become incarcerated, if you are considered a "fugitive felon" or have outstanding felony warrants or if you are sent to prison for a felony and you violate the parole, your benefits will end.
Your disability is rated by different percentage brackets. You are eligible to receive benefits even if you have a disability rated at 10 percent. If your condition improves in this case, you may quickly lose your benefits, since the Department of Veterans Affairs does not pay benefits to conditions rated at less than 10 percent. People with 100 percent disability receive higher benefits than people with lower-rated disability. If you have a spouse and children, or a disabled or spouse or dependent parents, your benefits also increase. As of 2011, payments vary from $123 per month if you have a 10-percent disability and no dependents to $3,172 per month if you are 100 percent disabled, you have a spouse, dependent children and two dependent parents.
Ronald Kimmons has been a professional writer and translator since 2006, with writings appearing in publications such as "Chinese Literature Today." He studied at Brigham Young University as an undergraduate, getting a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Bachelor of Arts in Chinese.