Total Disability Individual Unemployability Benefits (TDIU) can help you gain 100% coverage, even if you do not meet the traditional criteria needed for that much coverage. If you struggle to get or maintain gainful employment because of your disabilities, you might qualify for this important coverage. 

At Centonzio Law, our VA disability attorneys understand TDIU and how to apply for it in your case. We understand how hard it can be to maintain and get a good job because of your disabilities. We stand ready to help you seek the full benefits you deserve.

What Is Total Disability Individual Unemployability?

Total Disability Individual Unemployability benefits (TDIU) are a unique coverage that helps veterans who cannot hold down a steady job because of their disabilities. The disability must be service-connected, and you must meet specific criteria. 

The phrase “gainful employment” is often confusing without a little more context, but is one of the things the VA considers when determine whether to grant TDIU. Gainful employment does not include odd jobs you might be able to get. Instead, it focuses on consistent work with appropriate pay considering your background, education, and experience. 

Am I Eligible for TDIU Benefits Through the VA?

To be eligible for TDIU, you must be unable to gain or maintain gainful employment due to your service-related disability. You must also meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • You must have a single service-connected disability that has a VA disability rating of 60% or higher; or
  • You must have multiple service-connected disabilities, with at least one of those rated at least 40% and a total combined disability rating of at least 70%

The VA determines what disability rating your single or multiple disabilities receive. However, the help of a qualified VA disability attorney is critical in this process. Your attorney can help the VA properly determine your disability by presenting evidence and properly handling the application process. Your lawyer can also appeal any denials of disability claims or disability ratings that are too low.

How Do I Apply for TDIU Coverage?

To apply for TDIU coverage, you and your attorney must complete two very important forms:

  • Veteran’s Application for Increased Compensation Based on Unemployability: VA Form 21-8940 
  • A Request for Employment Information in Connection with Claim for Disability Benefits: VA Form 21-4192 

For certain disability benefits, such as a clothing allowance, you might need an existing disability claim before applying for TDIU. Regardless of your situation, your VA disability attorney knows the right way to help you apply for coverage.

Does My Disability Rating Change if I’m Eligible for TDIU?

This is one of the more confusing parts of TDIU coverage for many eligible veterans. Your disability rating is considered independently of your TDIU status. Under TDIU, you can receive the same amount of benefits as someone who has a 100% disability, but this does not change your actual rating.

For example, assume that a veteran has two disabilities, one at 50% and another at 30% for a combined 80% rating. He is unable to maintain gainful employment as a result of these disabilities. After applying for TDIU, he is granted the same benefits as someone else with a 100% rating. However, his disability rating is still 80%, regardless of the level of benefits he receives.

Learn More About TDIU Benefits From a VA Disability Lawyer

Our VA disability attorneys have a comprehensive knowledge of TDIU and how to win it for you. Our highly skilled legal team is ready to complete your application, file any appeals, and work towards full compensation from the VA.

At Centonzio Law, we care about you and what you are going through. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.