20% is better than 30% or higher.... prove me wrong

MilitaryBlake

Well-Known Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
So obviously i have been posting alot on this issue because if it is accurate, I think it is really really odd and places Servicemen and Women with more serious DoD conditions at a huge disadvantage over those with less serious. Should go without saying that the title is somewhat of a misnomer, given that 20% is better than 30% for only very specific situations. Situations as I am about to articulate below.

If a SM is separated, not retired (10-20% DoD disability rated), and has a 100% VA rating, and enough ratings that they still reach 100% without the DoD ratings (conditions), they should get both their severance from the DoD, and their 100% VA check monthly because there is no double-dipping (i.e. a condition for which one is receiving both DoD and VA pay). There has been a lot of chatter about this on this thread lately:


Severance pay recommended, now what?

Ron's postings, the VA citation, and also my attorney all seem to corroborate this.

However, if I read the CRDP rules/regulations correctly, for SM's whose injuries did not occur while in battle, OR do not have 20+ years, they cannot receive BOTH DoD and VA pay, regardless if they are for similar conditions or not. So, take my example above; SM gets 20% DoD and 100% VA (and has extra conditions) they will get severance with 100% VA disability pay. BUT...

If they have a more serious condition, say 30% on the DoD side, (again, no 20+ years and not combat related) they will be considered retired (not separated) but will not get severance, only VA disability (assuming that it is not more advantageous to take DoD pay). Even IF they have enough VA-rated conditions that they are 100% without their DoD conditions.

This seems so backwards to me. Can anyone confirm? I confirmed as much with my attorney today (he did concede that indeed, this is a very rare situation). This is kinda important to me because this is my exact situation. If it is all accurate then not only would it not be doing me any good requesting a formal PEB but it would actually really hurt me.
 

RonG

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Lifetime Supporter
Registered Member
Hello,

1. Re: "However, if I read the CRDP rules/regulations correctly, for SM's whose injuries did not occur while in battle, OR do not have 20+ years, they cannot receive BOTH DoD and VA pay, regardless if they are for similar conditions or not. " Comment: CRDP is unrelated to combat. Generally, CRDP entitlement involves
---50% VA rating or more
---20 years active duty or have a TERA retirement or a reserve retirement and meets the age requirement


2. CRSC is Combat Related Special Compensation...a combat related disability 10% of more is required Collection of CRSC info LINK <---

3. CH 61 retirees with less than 20 years active duty are eligible for CRSC. Their retired pay is reduced dollar for dollar in the amount of VA compensation received. Any residual retired pay is retained by the retiree.

4. DoD disability retirement requires a DoD rating of 30% or more. The primary benefit for attaining that status is TRICARE for Life. That is my opinion.

5. My thoughts about recoupment of disability severance pay are merely my interpretation of the VA manual I have cited multiple times.

6. Recommend you consult with the VA.

7. Understanding the VA Waiver and Retired Pay/CRDP/CRSC Adjustments
See LINK <---

8. Combat-Related Special Compensation (CRSC) and Concurrent Retirement Disability Pay (CRDP)
See LINK <----


9. History of CRDP and CRSC: LINK <----


Ron
 

MilitaryBlake

Well-Known Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
Hello,
...............



4. DoD disability retirement requires a DoD rating of 30% or more. The primary benefit for attaining that status is TRICARE for Life. That is my opinion.

5. My thoughts about recoupment of disability severance pay are merely my interpretation of the VA manual I have cited multiple times.

6. Recommend you consult with the VA.
..........-

Ron
#4 - I will go and visit a VA office today (unless prohibited by COVID restrictions). I understand that Tricare for life (same as Select? or Prime?) is pretty much the same as the VACHAMP I would get for dependents because I am 100% disabled by VA. Opinions? Thoughts? This is from both Soldier Counsel and my MSC. Folks think this is accurate?

#5 - Yes. We have rehashed this. But.... I really think you are correct. See my postings in the other threads where this has been discussed. There was a post from just a bout a year ago (not going to research it again) where at least TWO folks who had separated confirmed their $$ was recovered in the way according to our interpretation.

#6 - Yup. Agreed - will go at first chance....
 

tony292

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Champva is decent coverage but they do have a medication copay which can sometimes be very high using a regular pharmacy. My stepmother is on champva and was paying 285 per month for meds. There is a trick to this, we switched to to champva meds by mail (similar to Tricare’s express scripts) and now she has no copays.

That said, the 20 vs 30% arguement largely depends on how much you would get DOD vs VA. In my case my high 3 was O3E over 18, and I’m rated 100% DOD and 100% VA. So I get 3400 per month VA and 1200 per month DOD due to the offset. If I were rated say 20% DOD and 100% VA, then I’d have received a large involuntary separation pay which would have been deducted from my VA compensation, so a large chuck of money followed by no money for a long time. I’ll take the 100/100 any day over 20/100.
 

RonG

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Lifetime Supporter
Registered Member
over 20 years right? To qualify for concurrent pay?
You must be eligible for retired pay to qualify for CRDP. If you were placed on a disability retirement, but would be eligible for military retired pay in the absence of the disability, you may be entitled to receive CRDP.

Under these rules, you may be entitled to CRDP if…

  • you are a regular retiree with a VA disability rating of 50 percent or greater.
  • you are a reserve retiree with 20 qualifying years of service, who has a VA disability rating of 50 percent or greater and who has reached retirement age. (In most cases the retirement age for reservists is 60, but certain reserve retirees may be eligible before they turn 60. If you are a member of the Ready Reserve, your retirement age can be reduced below age 60 by three months for each 90 days of active service you have performed during a fiscal year.)
  • you are retired under Temporary Early Retirement Act (TERA) and have a VA disability rating of 50 percent or greater.
  • you are a disability retiree who earned entitlement to retired pay under any provision of law other than solely by disability, and you have a VA disability rating of 50 percent or more.
The info above is from DFAS.

Ron
 

jayallen

New Member
Registered Member
You must be eligible for retired pay to qualify for CRDP. If you were placed on a disability retirement, but would be eligible for military retired pay in the absence of the disability, you may be entitled to receive CRDP.

Under these rules, you may be entitled to CRDP if…

  • you are a regular retiree with a VA disability rating of 50 percent or greater.
  • you are a reserve retiree with 20 qualifying years of service, who has a VA disability rating of 50 percent or greater and who has reached retirement age. (In most cases the retirement age for reservists is 60, but certain reserve retirees may be eligible before they turn 60. If you are a member of the Ready Reserve, your retirement age can be reduced below age 60 by three months for each 90 days of active service you have performed during a fiscal year.)
  • you are retired under Temporary Early Retirement Act (TERA) and have a VA disability rating of 50 percent or greater.
  • you are a disability retiree who earned entitlement to retired pay under any provision of law other than solely by disability, and you have a VA disability rating of 50 percent or more.
The info above is from DFAS.

Ron
Yes it does
 

Usndocgreen

Well-Known Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
Hello All,
I have been reading this several times with interest. My fpeb is Wednesday. I have been running the numbers in my head and I just don’t see how for me it would be best to be 20% dod/100% va getting a one time big fat severance vs payments for the rest of my life with arguably better healthcare for me and my family. Am I missing something? I am 36 y.o. 0-4 With 14 years credible service
 

tony292

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Hello All,
I have been reading this several times with interest. My fpeb is Wednesday. I have been running the numbers in my head and I just don’t see how for me it would be best to be 20% dod/100% va getting a one time big fat severance vs payments for the rest of my life with arguably better healthcare for me and my family. Am I missing something? I am 36 y.o. 0-4 With 14 years credible service
Do the math. Your VA and DOD percentage above 30% is more beneficial. The severance would be high for an O4, but the VA will recoup it all, so it’s basically like a loan with no interest.

For most the VA vs dod is a wash since their pay is often below the VA compensation and thus completely offset. For you, your O4 pay will be higher than VA so you’ll get full amount of VA and a portion of DOD.

For me, a retired MAJ, my high 3 was at O3E over 18. I’m rated 100/100 (although the VA caps it at 75% for pay.

So for me, the math works out to be:

3426 VA 100% PT with wife and 2 kids.
1096 DOD ch 61 retirement, leftover after offset.
 

RonG

PEB Forum Regular Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Lifetime Supporter
Registered Member
Hello All,
I have been reading this several times with interest. My fpeb is Wednesday. I have been running the numbers in my head and I just don’t see how for me it would be best to be 20% dod/100% va getting a one time big fat severance vs payments for the rest of my life with arguably better healthcare for me and my family. Am I missing something? I am 36 y.o. 0-4 With 14 years credible service
Hello,

I think his (original poster) point was that at 30% or more DoD, one will have their retired pay reduced dollar for dollar in the amount of VA comp received. In many cases that reduces the retired pay to zero. Tony provides an excellent example of what occurs if there is residual (left over) retired pay.

3426 VA 100% PT with wife and 2 kids.
1096 DOD ch 61 retirement, leftover after offset [reduction/waiver].

The case being discussed here is applicable to those not entitled to CRDP.

Even if one has all their retired pay reduced/offset/waived (all terms referring to the same action), it is more attractive than severance pay in my opinion.
--possibility of CRSC
--Lifetime Tricare for life
--no reduction of VA comp for recoupment of severance pay
--and more.

TRICARE; It has helped pay for four cardiac pacemaker operations/implantations; prostate cancer surgery and additional treatment; cataract surgery; knee surgery; and general medical care. It has saved me hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Summary: It is my strong belief that a medical retirement is of more value than severance pay when considering the long-term benefits of TRICARE, etc.

Ron
 

Bmbj87

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
So what's the verdict on keeping the severance?
I'm in a similar situation
Medical separation 10%for hip

Had
3x 50% VA ratings
8x 10% VA ratings

I understand the no double dipping. It was explained to me that since even if you don't count the 10% for my hip I'm still at 100% so I won't have to worry about recoupment. 2875.png
 

nsmartin1980

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
I'm in the realm of the OP's scenario. I decided to take the severance and not press for medical retirement. In my specific situation, it made the most sense.

O3, Married, no children, 9 years of service.
Medically separating
No combat deployments
100% P&T VA
20% DoD

I will receive a one-time severance payment of ~$85K (after taxes).
I will receive monthly VA compensation of $2998 after recoupment ($3279 for 100% VA, minus $281 for the one Dod-rated condition at the 20% DoD rate).
I will receive full healthcare coverage through the VA and CHAMPVA for my husband.


Other contributing factors:
I had a GS14 job offer on the table and didn't want to mess around with waiting who knows how long for FPEB, then another 180 days after "retirement" before I could take the job. We could definitely use the severance to finish a large home renovation in DC (major equity), and bank some solid savings. My monthly retired pay would have been $4800 at the MOST, and that would've been an unlikely outcome. The difference between my VA monthly and max possible retirement is $1800/month, but I would not have gotten the $85K severance. $85K/$1800 is ~47 years. My husband is very healthy, so CHAMPVA is just fine for him (as well as the care I can get for both of us as a GS by buying the group health plan). I didn't care that much about WHERE I got healthcare, so long as I was fully covered - which I will be, just by the VA/through GS health insurance instead of at MTFs. Base privileges (gym, commissary, NEX, MWR, etc etc) are now essentially the same whether you're a retiree or not. This wasn't a big deal for me but it might be to some people.

YMMV so be sure to sit down and think through the scenarios. I found my VA liaison to be really helpful, though I ran my scenario through at least 5 people to do a sanity check. Most people will just tell you to push for the retirement without really thinking about the details. It seems you really need to have a 100% VA rating, and some years in/higher rank (severance amount) for it to make sense.
 

chaplaincharlie

Super Moderator
Staff Member
PEB Forum Veteran
Lifetime Supporter
Registered Member
I think situations vary and people ultimately have to make the best decision for themself.
 

Bmbj87

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
I got 10% dod
100% VA

13 yr e6

I'm waiting to see my severance now. Just trying to figure out about recoupment when I'm at 100% without the unfitting condition being added in.
 

nsmartin1980

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
I think situations vary and people ultimately have to make the best decision for themself.
Yes, exactly! I spent many hours researching and talking to various people before I made my decision.

Also wanted to clarify that my severance is NOT taxed (or should not be, since I have a VA rating) so the amount is actually $115k.
 

nsmartin1980

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
I got 10% dod
100% VA

13 yr e6

I'm waiting to see my severance now. Just trying to figure out about recoupment when I'm at 100% without the unfitting condition being added in.
Based on my research, I don't think you can "unclaim" whatever condition(s) the VA rated AND DoD found unfitting. Please post if you find out differently.

I have another post on the Navy Timeline forum with more details about my case. I had a ton of VA-rated conditions, only one that DoD found unfitting, but because that one condition forms the basis for my separation - and the DoD uses the VA's rating for it - I will still have a recoupment of 20%. Both organizations tie back to the one rating.
 
Last edited:

Bmbj87

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
Based on my research, I don't think you can "uncouple" whatever condition(s) DoD rated you on from the VA, because that condition(s) is/are the premise for your separation. Please post if you find out differently.
I just meant even without considering it I'm at 100%. My attachment above is why I'm curious.
 

nsmartin1980

PEB Forum Regular Member
Registered Member
I just meant even without considering it I'm at 100%. My attachment above is why I'm curious.
I am in the same boat, with 18 VA-rated conditions. The one unfitting condition is only 20% and way down the list, but because DoD is separating me based on that one condition and paying me severance for it, I can't also get the full 100% monthly VA compensation because I would be getting paid twice for that one condition. Instead, they will take $281 per month - the current amount for a single 20% rated condition - out of my VA compensation until my severance has been recouped. Or it might be more - at $281/month, it will take them ~50 years to recoup it.

There's no way to "not consider" your unfitting condition in the equation. The severance pay is predicated upon you having an unfitting condition, so regardless of how far down your full list of VA ratings it is, it will always be considered by the VA as part of your overall monetary compensation. And you can't get paid for the same condition twice.
 
data-matched-content-ui-type="image_stacked" data-matched-content-rows-num="3" data-matched-content-columns-num="1" data-ad-format="autorelaxed">
Top