Applying for Benefits
Schedule an appointment with our office:
Office Location: 206 Court Street, Chilton, WI 53014
Disability compensation is a monthly tax-free benefit paid to Veterans who are at least 10% disabled because of injuries or diseases that were incurred in or aggravated during active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty training. A disability can apply to physical conditions, such as chronic knee condition, as well as mental health conditions, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
The benefit amount is graduated according to the degree of the Veteran's disability on a scale from 0 percent to 100 percent (in increments of 10 percent). Compensation may also to paid for disabilities that are considered related or secondary to disability occurring in service and for disabilities presumed to be related to circumstances of military service, even though they may arise after service. Generally, the degree of disability specified are also designed to compensate for considerable loss of working time from exacerbations or illnesses.
If you have dependents, an additional allowance may be added if your combined disability is rated 30% or greater. Your compensation may be offset if you receive military retirement pay, disability severance pay, or separation incentive payments.
- Service on active duty, OR
- Active duty for training, OR
- Inactive duty training, AND
- You were discharged under other than dishonorable conditions, AND
- You are at least 10% disabled by an injury or disease that was incurred in or aggravated during active duty or active duty for training, or inactive duty training.
Note: If you were on inactive duty for training, the disability must have resulted from injury, heart attack, or stroke.
- Medical evidence of a current physical or mental disability, AND
- Evidence of a relationship between your disability and an injury, disease, or event in military service. Medical records or medical opinions are required to establish this relationship.
Note: Under certain circumstances, VA may conclude that certain current disabilities were caused by service, even if there is no specific evidence proving this in your particular claim.
Applying for Disability Compensation
Supporting documents required:
- Copies of all medical treatment records relation to the condition being claimed.
- Doctor's office visit records, hospital records, statements from physicians, and copies of any service medical records.
- A copy of all discharge documents (DD-214's),
- Social Security numbers for your spouse and all eligible dependent children,
- Copies of all marriage license for current and all previous spouses,
- Copies of divorce decrees and/or death certificates from previous spouses,
- Copies of divorce decrees and/or death certificates for all of your current spouse's previous marriages,
- Additional documents may be necessary depending on the individual situation.
Veterans Pension Benefit
(Aid & Attendance/Housebound)
The Veterans Pension program provides monthly payments to wartime Veterans who meet certain age or disability requirements, and who have income and net worth within certain limits.
Veteran must have at least 90 days of active duty service, with at least one day during a wartime period to qualify for a VA Pension. Note: If you entered active duty after September 7, 1980, you must have served at least 24 months or the full period for which you were called or ordered to active duty, with at least one day during a wartime period.
- World War II (December 7, 1941 - December 31, 1946).
- Korean conflict (June 27, 1950 - January 31, 1955).
- Vietnam era (November 1, 1955 - May 7, 1975) for Veterans who served in the Republic of Vietnam during that period; otherwise (August 5, 1964 - May 7, 1975), for Veterans who served outside the Republic of Vietnam.
- Gulf War (August 2, 1990 - through a future date to be set by law or Presidential Proclamation).
In addition to meeting minimum service requirements:
- Age 65 or older, OR
- Totally and permanently disabled, OR
- A patient in a assisted living or nursing home facility, OR
- Receiving Social Security Disability Insurance, OR
- Receiving Supplemental Security Income.
- Your yearly family income and net worth meet certain limits set by Congress. Your net worth includes all personal property you own (except your house, your car, and most home furnishings), minus any debt you own. Your net worth includes the net worth of your spouse. Find out about Veterans Pension rates
Aid & Attendance (A&A)/Housebound
Veterans who are eligible for VA Pension, and require the need for aid and attendance of another person, or are housebound, may be eligible for additional monetary payment. These benefits are paid in addition to monthly pension benefits.
- This increased monthly benefit amount may be added to your monthly compensation or pension when you are substantially confined to your immediate premises because of permanent disability.
Applying for Veterans Pension (A&A/Housebound)
- A statement from the Veteran's physician must be submitted which provides the medical history, diagnosis, prognosis, and the degree of disabling effect of the medical condition.
- VA Form 21-2680 is available from the County Veterans service Office to serve this purpose.
- Supporting documentation includes:
- A copy of the Veteran's discharge from active duty,
- Proof of income and net worth: (social security, pension, checking, savings, stocks, bonds, IRA's, etc.),
- Calculation of out of pocket medical expense,
- A copy of Marriage certificate, if applicable,
- If the Veteran is in a nursing home, assisted living facility, or receiving in-home care; a statement attesting to the level of care and the cost of care must be submitted. A form for this purpose is available from the County Veterans Service Office.
Eligibility for VA health care
You may be eligible for VA health care benefits if you served in the active military, naval, or air service and didn’t receive a dishonorable discharge.
- If you enlisted after September 7, 1980, or entered active duty after October 16, 1981, you must have served 24 continuous months or the full period for which you were called to active duty, unless any of the descriptions below are true for you.
This minimum duty requirement may not apply if any of these are true. You:
- Were discharged for a disability that was caused—or made worse—by your active-duty service, or
- Were discharged for a hardship or “early out,” or
- Served prior to September 7, 1980
- If you’re a current or former member of the Reserves or National Guard, you must have been called to active duty by a federal order and completed the full period for which you were called or ordered to active duty. If you had or have active-duty status for training purposes only, you don’t qualify for VA health care.
At least one of these must be true. You:
- Receive financial compensation (payments) from VA for a service-connected disability.
- Were discharged for a disability resulting from something that happened to you in the line of duty.
- Were discharged for a disability that got worse in the line of duty.
- Are a recently discharged combat Veteran.
- Get a VA pension.
- Are a former prisoner of war (POW).
- Have received a Purple Heart.
- Have received a Medal of Honor.
- Get (or qualify for) Medicaid benefits.
- Served in Vietnam between January 9, 1962, and May 7, 1975.
- Served in Southwest Asia during the Gulf War between August 2, 1990, and November 11, 1998.
- Served at least 30 days at Camp Lejeune between August 1, 1953, and December 31, 1987.
If none of the above apply to you, you may still qualify for care based on your income. Learn more about how the amount of money your family makes can affect whether you qualify for VA benefits. Learn more about income limits.
- Veterans meeting the requirements above should call our office for an appointment. We will help fill out the required form and send it to the VA.
VA Health Care is NOT Health Insurance
- VA healthcare is not medical/health insurance, it is health care provided in the VA healthcare system. Enrolled Veterans can receive medical treatment from the VA Medical Center or VA Clinic to which they are assigned. This benefit is only for the Veteran, not family members. VA healthcare will not pay for routine treatment at a non-VA medical facility unless pre-approval is authorized and provided to the Veteran by VA. This is called “VA Care in the Community.” During a medical emergency, Veterans should immediately seek care at the nearest medical facility. A medical emergency is an injury, illness, or symptom so severe that without immediate treatment, you believe your life or health is in danger. If this happens, ask the facility to bill the VA (although there is no guarantee VA will authorize payment). Remember, if you phone VA and speak to the nurse advice line and they advise you to seek emergency care; this is not an authorization for payment.
During a medical emergency, you should immediately seek care at the nearest medical facility. A medical emergency is an injury, illness or symptom so severe that without immediate treatment, you believe your life or health is in danger. If you believe your life or health is in danger, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency department right away.
You do not need to check with the VA before calling for an ambulance or going to an emergency department. During a medical emergency, you are encouraged to seek immediate medical attention without delay. A claim for emergency care will never be denied based solely on VA not receiving notification prior to seeking care.
It is, however, important to promptly notify the VA that you are receiving emergency care at a community emergency department. Notification should be made within 72 hours of admission, sooner is always better. You do not have to be the one to notify the VA, a family member or friend can notify them on your behalf. DO NOT assume the medical facility will contact the VA, even if they say they will, it is better to have someone contact the VA as well. This allows VA to assist you and/or the healthcare provider in coordinating necessary care or transfer, and helps to ensure that the administrative and clinical requirements for the VA to pay for the care are met.
After Receiving Care
Once your immediate emergency medical care needs have been addressed, you, a family member, or friend should contact the nearest VA medical facility within 72 hours. Once notified, VA staff will assist you and/or your representatives in understanding eligibility and how eligibility relates to services rendered in the community. The VA staff will also ensure that, if desired, you are transferred to a VA medical center upon stabilization and that you are set up to receive additional care, post discharge, without interruption.
IMPORTANT: When you receive emergency medical care, notifying the VA as quickly as possible is always best. It ensures the maximum potential for VA coverage and assists the VA in providing you with the care you need.
Filing a Claim: Claims for emergency medical care should be submitted to the VA as soon as possible after care has been provided. The deadline for filing a claim depends on whether care was provided for a service-connected (24 months) condition or a nonservice-connected (90 days) condition. Here is a quick Video on filing a community care claim with the VA.
Federal Education Benefits
Post 9/11 GI Bill
The Post-9/11 GI Bill provides financial support for education and housing to individuals with at least 90 days of aggregate service after September 10, 2001, or individuals discharged with a service-connected disability after 30 days. You must have received an honorable discharge to be eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill.
If your release from active duty was before January 1, 2013, there is a 15-year time limitation for use of benefits. For individuals whose last discharge date is on or after January 1, 2013, the time limitation has been removed.
For more information click HERE.
Veteran Readiness and Employment (VR&E)
You may receive VR&E benefits to help with job training, employment accommodations, resume development, and job seeking skills coaching for those who are disabled and unable to work in traditional employment.
You’re eligible to apply for VR&E benefits and services if you meet both of the requirements listed here:
All of these must be true:
- You didn’t receive a dishonorable discharge, and
- You have a service-connected disability rating of at least 10% from VA
When the VA receives your VR&E application, they will schedule your initial evaluation with a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC). The VRC will determine if you’re entitled to receive VR&E benefits and services.
If you were discharged from active duty before January 1, 2013, your basic period of eligibility ends 12 years from one of these dates, whichever comes later:
- The date you received notice of your date of separation from active duty, or
- The date you received your first VA service-connected disability rating
The basic period of eligibility may be extended if a VRC finds that you have a serious employment handicap (SEH). Having an SEH means your service-connected disability significantly limits your ability to prepare for, obtain, and maintain suitable employment (a job that doesn’t make your disability worse, is stable, and matches your abilities, aptitudes, and interests).
If you were discharged from active duty on or after January 1, 2013, the 12-year basic period of eligibility doesn’t apply to you. There’s no time limit on your eligibility.
Active Duty Servicemembers are eligible if:
At least one of these must be true:
- You have a 20% or higher pre-discharge disability rating (memorandum rating) and will soon leave the military, or
- You’re waiting to be discharged because of a severe illness or injury that occurred while you were on active duty
For more information click HERE.
Wisconsin Education Benefits
Wisconsin GI Bill
The Wisconsin GI Bill waives full tuition and segregated fees for eligible Veterans and their dependents for up to eight semesters or 128 credits, whichever is greater, at any University of Wisconsin System or Wisconsin Technical College System school.
- A Wisconsin resident at the time of entry into active military service, or
- A Wisconsin resident for at least five consecutive years preceding the beginning of any semester or session for which he or she registers at a qualifying institution.
Military Service Requirements
The Veteran must meet one of the following:
- Served on active duty 90 days or more during a war period.
- Served on active duty at least tow continuous years or full initial service obligation during peacetime
- Regardless of length of active duty, was honorably discharged due to:
- Service-connected disability.
- Disability subsequently adjudicated to have been service-connected.
- Reduction in the U.S. armed forces.
- Served in a designated crisis zone
- Received the:
- Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal.
- Vietnam Service Medal.
- Navy Expeditionary Medal.
- Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal.
- An expeditionary or service medal equivalent to those above.
- Served for any period under Section 1 of Executive order 10957 dated August 10, 1961
- A qualifying Veteran’s spouse or child may use this benefit if the Veteran has been awarded a service connected disability rating of at least 30% by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or died in the line of duty or as a result of a service connected disability.
- The spouse or child must meet the same residency requirements as the Veteran.
For more information click HERE.
Wisconsin Veteran Student Assistance Grant
The Wisconsin Veteran Student Assistance Grant is a State of Wisconsin Veterans benefit available to qualified Veterans, as well as certain spouses and children of qualified veterans, for use at a private nonprofit educational institution that is a member of the Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (WAICU).
This grant has the same eligibility requirements as the Wisconsin GI Bill for the Veteran and their family member(s).
For more information click HERE.