All right, we are back
from a great holiday and ready for the (hopefully) wonderful changes that will
be coming to Military Disability
First and foremost,
Congress increased the rates given for VA Disability
and Special Monthly Compensation
by 1.7%. The increase is based on the Cost of Living Adjustments
(COLA) that reflect the rate of inflation throughout the nation. This year’s
rate is higher than last year’s 1.5% increase, but this is the third year in a
row where the increase has been less than 2%.
The increased rates
went into effect December 1, 2014. The new amounts can be found on our VA Disability Chart
and Special Monthly Compensation Rates
pages. The increases
are automatic, and you should have already seen them in your December checks.
If not, contact your local VA office.
Another change that
will be happening during 2015 is the rewriting of the VASRD
that is to be
released in stages throughout the year. The powers that be are currently
rewriting the entire VASRD to 1.) update it to reflect more modern medical
language, terminologies, and accepted practices and 2.) try to make it more
accurate and fair. Hopefully that will indeed be the case.
The first of these
rewrites was released in August 2014
and updated the Mental Disorders
of the VASRD. The remainder of the rewrites are expected to be released one
section at a time throughout 2015.
It is impossible at
this stage for us to say exactly when the rewrites will be completed and how they
will change the VASRD. Each section could be handled completely differently,
and until Congress releases the official version, it’s all just speculation. We
will, however, make sure to get the information to you as soon as it is
May 2015 be a good
year for us all, especially for our deserving disabled veterans.