Important Changes to the VA Compensation Rates for 2020

Tucker Law Group
February 17, 2020

Veterans with disabilities which stem from their military service can receive benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). A veteran’s disability compensation benefits are calculated according to the VA’s compensation rates.  VA’s disability pay chart reflects a veteran’s combined disability rating, which indicates the severity of their disability.

VA disability compensation rates can change each year if Congress grants a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA).  Any changes made to the rates will directly affect a veteran’s monthly compensation. Below you will find the changes for 2020 as discussed by our VA disability lawyers.

VA Disability Ratings

When you apply for VA disability benefits, the VA will first assess your disability and assign it a rating. Your disability rating will reflect the severity of the disability. The more serious a condition, or the more a condition prevents you from working, the higher your rating will be.

If you have multiple service-related disabilities, the VA will combine them into one rating. This means that the VA does not send out individual checks for each disability a veteran may have. Instead, you can expect one check each month which will account for all of your disabilities.

Disability ratings will fall on a scale which ranges from 0% to 100% in 10% increments. Any ranking which falls between 10-100% will qualify a veteran for disability compensation.  Once VA’s formula for combining ratings is applied, the combined rating tells you the amount of monthly VA disability compensation you will be paid.

How to Read the VA Disability Pay Chart

The amount of monthly compensation a veteran will receive depends on their disability rating. Veterans with a combined rating higher than 30% and who have qualifying dependents are eligible for additional compensation. These qualifying dependents include:

  • A spouse
  • Children under the age of 18
  • Children between the ages of 18-23 who are still in school
  • Dependent parents

Veterans with multiple qualifying dependents can expect to see additional compensation for each additional dependent.

The VA Disability Pay Chart Changes for 2020

Starting December 1st of 2019, veterans saw changes in their VA disability rates which will last through 2020. These changes were the result of the Cost of Living Adjustment, or COLA. The COLA takes into account the fluctuation of cost-of-living expenses that veterans face. The VA COLA rate for 2020 was set at 1.6%, which means a 1.6% increase in veterans’ monthly compensation.

A 1.6% increase may not sound substantial, but it can add up over time. For example, in 2019, a veteran with a 60% ranking and no dependents could expect a baseline of $1,113.86/month in compensation. In 2020, this same veteran receives $1,131.68. After 12 months, this veteran will have received $213.84 more in 2020 than they did in 2019.

2020 VA Disability Pay Chart

Infographic of va disability pay chart for 2020

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Denied VA Disability Benefits? Contact the Tucker Law Group for Help

Trying to secure your VA disability benefits may seem like an uphill battle. This is because the VA makes veterans jump through many hoops just to file a claim. Even after all their work, a veteran may still get denied.

If this has happened to you, we encourage you to speak with our nationally recognized firm.

The appeals process takes time, but our attorneys can help you every step of the way. Fill out our online form or give us a call at (866) 233-5044 to learn more about our services.