Veterans News: Some veterans may qualify for ‘special monthly compensation’
BY TAMMY JAVENKOSKI
Oneida County Veterans Services Officer
Veterans who have service-connected disabilities can receive additional payments above and beyond the basic compensation rates for some serious disabilities. The Veterans Administrations will pay additional compensation, called special monthly compensation (SMC), to a veteran who, as a result of military service, incurred the loss, or loss of use of, specific organs or extremities.
Loss, or loss of use, is described as either an amputation or having no effective remaining function of an extremity or organ. The disabilities the VA can consider for SMC include:
• Loss, or loss of use, of a hand or foot;
• Immobility of a joint or paralysis;
• Loss of sight of an eye (having only light perception);
• Loss, or loss of use, of a reproductive organ;
• Complete loss, or loss of use, of both buttocks;
• Deafness of both ears (having absence of air and bone conduction);
• Inability to communicate by speech (complete organic aphonia);
• Loss of a percentage of tissue from a single breast, or both breasts, from mastectomy or radiation treatment.
The VA will pay higher rates for combinations of these disabilities such as loss, or loss of use, of the feet, legs, hands, and arms, in specific monetary increments, based on the particular combination of the disabilities. There are also higher payments for various combinations of severe deafness with bilateral blindness.
Additional SMC is available if a veteran is service-connected for paraplegia, with complete loss of bowel and bladder control.
If a veteran is service-connected at the 100 percent rate and is housebound, bedridden, or is so helpless as to need the aid and attendance of another person, then payment of additional SMC can be considered. The amount of SMC will vary depending on the level of disability.
Tammy Javenkoski can be reached at 715-369-6127 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Jason Dailey, Assistant CVSO, can be reached at the same number or email@example.com. You can also contact us via Facebook at www.facebook.com/oneidacvso.