The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has announced that several of its financial compensation benefits would increase in 2021. This means veterans who suffer from mesothelioma related to their military service will receive more money starting this year. See how VA compensation for mesothelioma increased.
VA Disability Compensation & Pension Payouts To Increase
U.S. veterans who were diagnosed with mesothelioma are often entitled to financial VA benefits. On December 1st, 2020, the VA announced that several of its financial benefits would increase in 2021.
Here are the compensation benefits that increased:
- Disability compensation: While in 2020 this benefit started at $3,106.04 for most veterans with mesothelioma, it has increased to $3,146.42 in 2021.
- VA pension: The VA increased the Maximum Annual Pension Rate (MAPR) amounts. The base MAPR for those who qualify is now $13,931, up from $13,752 in 2020. Veterans whose income did not increase can expect more money from their pension.
- Aid & Attendance (A&A): As part of the VA Pension Plan, A&A rates also increased from $22,939 in 2020 to $23,238 in 2021.
- Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC): Survivors of veterans may qualify for monthly VA DIC payments. The base rate increased to $1,357.56 from 2020’s $1,340.14.
This VA compensation increase can help veterans with mesothelioma and their families in a variety of different ways. In most cases, these financial benefits are tax-free and there aren’t any limits on how veterans can spend the money. They also do not affect a veteran’s ability to access other types of mesothelioma compensation
If you served in the military and were later diagnosed with mesothelioma, our team — including U.S. veteran and attorney Eric Hall — can help you pursue VA benefits and other forms of compensation today.
Why Can Veterans Access VA Compensation for Mesothelioma?
Veterans are one of the highest-risk groups for mesothelioma due to widespread military use of asbestos between the 1930s in the early 1980s. This fibrous mineral made military assets very durable, but if humans inhale the fibers they can develop mesothelioma, a deadly cancer, decades later.
The military and the general public had no idea of asbestos was dangerous, since manufacturers of asbestos-based products hid the facts to keep profits high.
The VA is committed to financially assisting veterans who have disabilities, injuries, or illnesses related to their military service. To that end, the VA will provide financial compensation to veterans affected by mesothelioma to ensure that their medical bills, living expenses, and other costs are paid for.
How Much VA Compensation Can Veterans With Mesothelioma Receive?
The amount of VA compensation a veteran can receive depends on a couple of different factors – most notably, the number of dependents they have.
- VA disability benefits: VA disability compensation pays out money based on what is known as a “disability rating.” Mesothelioma is considered a total disability (100% disability rating) by the VA, so veterans that qualify receive the most amount of money available. As previously mentioned, the base amount is $3,146.42. However, veterans may receive more money if they have a dependent spouse or children.
- VA pensions: Calculating VA pension is slightly more complicated. To qualify for a VA Pension, a veteran’s income must be under the established MAPR rate for their situation. For example, a veteran with no dependents and who needs A&A has an MAPR of $23,238. How much the pension will actually pay depends on their income. If the veteran’s income is $15,000, they would receive $8,238.
- VA DIC: There is no income limit to receive VA DIC. Spouses can receive $1,357.56 per month or more if they have a disability or need to care for children below the age of 18.
VA Mesothelioma Compensation FAQs
By how much did the VA compensation rates increase?
They increased by approximately 1.3% for 2021.
Will the VA compensation rates continue to increase?
Yes. They typically increase each year to adjust for the rate of inflation. The VA typically announces the new compensation rate on December 1st of each year.
Can you make too much money to get VA benefits?
Depending on your income, you may or may not be able to receive a VA pension. Your income has no effect on disability compensation and many other types of benefits available through the VA.
Eric Hall — a VA-accredited lawyer and veteran — can help determine what benefits you may qualify for. File for VA benefits today.
How Veterans Can Access VA Compensation for Mesothelioma
Veterans with mesothelioma can apply for VA compensation and other benefits by contacting our website. VA-accredited attorney Eric Hall and our caring patient advocates can help veterans find the benefits they need during this trying time.
We can also help you pursue compensation through legal claims and asbestos trust funds, which may award even more than monthly VA payouts — with no legal action taken against the military.
Contact our team today to learn more.