Total Disability Based on Individual Unemployability (TDIU)

Increasing your VA benefits when you are unable to work

Some veterans who receive disability compensation are eligible to receive additional benefits if they are unable to work as a result of their service-connected disability. If your service-related disability prevents you from holding gainful employment, you could be rated at 100 percent for the purposes of your VA disability benefits. Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban understands the complex requirements for obtaining TDIU benefits and helps veterans who are unable to work.

A veteran must meet two requirements under a TDIU claim to be eligible for a 100 percent disability rating:

  • One service-connected disability with a 60 percent or more disability rating, or two or more service-connected disabilities with a combined rating of 70 percent or more. Veterans who claim two or more disabilities must have at least one rating of 40 percent or higher.
  • Medical evidence that your disabilities prevent you from performing necessary tasks to obtain or keep gainful employment.

Under some circumstances, veterans may receive TDIU benefits if their disability rating is less than the threshold. For example, a veteran who demonstrates an unusual impairment to earning, such as frequent hospitalizations, may qualify for benefits. Usually, our VA disability lawyers can help obtain TDIU benefits for veterans when one or more service-connected disability prevents them from obtaining gainful employment, regardless of the percentage of the disability rating.

While there is no hard and fast definition of gainful employment, the term generally refers to consistent work for payment by an employer. A veteran who performs odd jobs or occasional tasks for pay would not be considered gainfully employed. Veterans applying for an increase in disability rating based on unemployability must complete a Form-21-8940. There is an additional requirement that you fill out an Employment Questionnaire once a year to maintain your TDIU status. Our attorneys are accredited with the Veterans Administration and can assist you throughout the process.

Let us stand up for you

If you encounter an uphill battle with the VA to obtain benefits that are rightfully yours, call Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban at 866-866-VETS or contact us online. Someone is always available to talk to you, even if you cannot come to our offices.

There are no upfront charges. You pay no fees unless we win your claim for benefits.

Because there is no requirement that your attorney live in your region or even in your state, you can leverage our knowledge and experience regardless of where you live or where your VA benefits claim is filed.