Additional Disability Benefits Available to Veterans with TBI and Secondary Illnesses
Veterans who suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) while on active duty may be eligible for disability benefits for more than just the initial injury. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), working with reports from the National Academy of Sciences, Institute of Medicine, has identified five illnesses related to a moderate or severe TBI.
The five ailments are:
- Parkinson’s disease;
- certain types of dementia;
- unprovoked seizures; and
- certain diseases of the hypothalamus and pituitary glands.
Starting on January 15, 2014, a veteran currently collecting disability pay for a moderate or severe TBI and who suffers from any of the five ailments may apply for expanded benefits. Veterans who have yet to apply for veterans disability benefits may also qualify for the expanded benefits if they fit the criteria. To qualify, a veteran must be classified as disabled with a moderate or severe TBI and there is a specific timeframe where the secondary illness must have begun following the initial brain injury.
If you qualify for the expanded benefits, the secondary illness will be considered service-connected and used to calculate your disability rating and payment of disability benefits.
Thanks to advances in protective technology and medical care on the battlefield, more servicemembers are surviving previously fatal injuries. Unfortunately, damage to the head and brain are still not uncommon, resulting in more cases of survivable TBI. When a servicemember suffers a TBI during active duty, he may be eligible for veterans disability benefits upon honorable or medical discharge from service.
If you or a loved one are a veteran who is seeking to file for the expanded TBI benefits, Disability Help Group are here to help. Call us today at 1-(800)-800-3332 for a FREE consultation with our disability team and learn about how we can help you win the benefits to which you are entitled.