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The monthly compensation amount for TDIU is equivalent to that of a 100 percent schedular disability rating. However, the requirements for entitlement to TDIU differ from the requirements of a 100 percent schedular rating. Namely, TDIU requires a veteran to show that he or she is unable to secure and maintain substantially gainful employment as a result of his or her service-connected disabilities. On the other hand, a 100 percent schedular rating does not always consider impact on employment. Instead, a 100 percent schedular rating is based on the severity of the veteran’s service-connected conditions as determined by the rating criteria.

Whether you are pursuing Total Disability Based on Individual Unemployability (TDIU) or a 100 percent schedular rating, a veterans lawyer can help you gather evidence and make your case.

The Difference Between TDIU and 100 Percent Schedular VA Disability Benefits

The difference between TDIU and a100 percent schedular rating is the eligibility requirements for each.

Qualifying Criteria

There are two ways scenarios in which a veteran may be assigned a schedular 100 percent rating.  The veteran must have one service-connected condition that meets the 100 percent rating criteria specified for that condition. Or, the veteran must have multiples service-connected disabilities whose individual disability ratings combine to 100 percent.

For veterans who do not have a 100 percent schedular rating, but are disabled to the point that they are unable to obtain and maintain substantially gainful employment, TDIU presents another option to receive compensation at the 100 percent amount.

To qualify for TDIU, you must be unemployable. Per VA’s regulation, unemployable means you are unable to secure and follow substantially gainful employment due to your service-connected conditions. Furthermore, substantially gainful employment is employment that 1) is not marginal, and 2) earns an annual salary that is above the federal poverty level.

TDIU can be awarded on either a schedular or an extraschedular basis.

Schedular vs. Extraschedular TDIU

The schedular requirements for TDIU are as follows:

  •  A veteran must have a single service-connected condition with a rating of at least 60 percent; or,
  •  A veteran must have at least two service-connected conditions with a combined rating of at least 70 percent, and with at least one of the conditions rated 40 percent or higher.

Extraschedular TDIU is available if you do not meet the requirements outlined above, but you are still unable to secure and maintain substantially gainful employment due to your service-connected conditions.

Why Might I Want a 100 percent Schedular Rating versus TDIU?

The biggest difference between TDIU and a 100 percent rating is the impact TDIU has on a veteran’s future employment status. There are no restrictions on a veteran’s ability to work with a 100 percent schedular rating.  However, because TDIU is predicated on unemployability, VA can and will revoke it if you become employable again.

Is 100 Percent Schedular VA Disability Permanent?

Both the100 percent schedular rating and TDIU have the potential to be permanent and total.

To assign you a permanent 100 percent rating, VA must classify your condition as permanent and total (P&T). VA only classifies disabilities as P&T when it is believed that you have little to no chance of ever recovering from your condition. VA can classify you as P&T whether you receive your benefits via a schedular rating or TDIU.

What Happens if I Am No Longer Unemployable? Can I Still Receive 100 Percent Disability?

Yes. If you receive a 100 percent rating on a schedular basis, employability is not factored into your rating. As such, you will continue receiving benefits at the 100 percent level as long as your disabilities continue to meet the rating criteria specified.

However, TDIU is contingent upon your continued inability to secure and maintain substantially gainful employment. If VA receives evidence that you are maintaining substantially gainful employment, or believes your condition no longer prevents you from doing so, TDIU benefits can be revoked.

For a Free VA Disability Case Evaluation, Call Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD at 800-544-9144

The veterans law attorneys at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD are dedicated to helping Veterans receive the VA benefits to which they are entitled.  For a free consultation, call our office at 800-544-9144 today.

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