When a veteran cannot retain or secure employment as a result of his/her service-connected disabilities, they are paid the Individual Unemployability (IU) Benefit. Complete VA form 21-8940 if you are unable to maintain employment due to service-connected disabilities. The form is the Veterans Application for Increased Compensation Based on Unemployability and is submitted along with current medical evidence on the extent of your service-connected disabilities. You can find the form by going to http://www.vba.va.gov/pubs/forms/VBA-21-8940-ARE.pdf. Evidence should reflect the past 12 months of your medical condition along with reports from hospitals and outpatient records. If you do not have the evidence, be sure to provide information telling VA where the evidence can be obtained.
Individual Unemployability is a part of VA’s disability compensation program that allows VA to pay certain Veterans disability compensation at the 100% rate, even though VA has not rated their service-connected disabilities at the total level.
- You must be a Veteran
- You must have at least one service connected disability rated at least at 60%, OR
- Two or more service connected disabilities at least one disability ratable at 40 percent or more with a combined rating of 70 percent or more.
- You must be unable to maintain substantially gainful employment as a result of service-connected disabilities (marginal employment, such as odd jobs, is not considered substantial gainful employment for VA purposes).
- Evidence of at least one service connected disability AND
- That the service-connected disability or disabilities are sufficient, without regard to other factors, to prevent performing the mental and/or physical tasks required to get or keep substantially gainful employment AND
- That one disability is ratable at 60 percent or more, OR
- If more than one disability exists, one disability is ratable at 40 percent or more with a combined rating of 70 percent or more.
Under exceptional circumstances this benefit may be granted with a lower disability rating than noted above provided the evidence shows the service-connected disability or disabilities present such an exceptional or unusual disability picture, due to such factors as marked interference with employment or frequent periods of hospitalization, that applying the normal disability requirements is impractical.