VA making HUGE recoupment of severance pay

TG7879

Registered Member
#1
I was separated in 2013 from the AF with a 10% rating and received disability severance. I was told that only that 10% would be recouped from my disability pay. I'm considered 100% disabled by the VA. In June, with NO WARNING, the VA started deducting over half of my pay for the recoupment of the severance. I've done everything I can, including filing a congressional complain with my Senator, to get this resolved. Here we are almost five months later and I'm getting nowhere. The preliminary response (after almost 90 days) from the Senators office is that it looks like they are correct in their recoupment. This has created significant financial stress on my family!! Has anyone else had this happened? Everything I read and everything I was told my my service upon discharge says it shouldn't... I don't know where else to turn.
 

oddpedestrian

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#2
Unless the severance was combat OR you are not rated for it on the VA side it will be recouped BUT what's important is its suppose to be on what you are rated for not the other disabilities. So what's your DOD 10% for and now what is your VA rating for that same rating? Is it 10% or something much higher? Also, you were supposed to contact the VA and request a lower portion to be taken out over a longer period as its causing you a financial hardship. The VA will want this formed filled out first to make a determination https://www.va.gov/vaforms/va/pdf/va5655.pdf
 

TG7879

Registered Member
#3
I was only discharged for one thing, rated 10%. I have multiple ratings for the VA, one alone is 100%. The disability that I was discharged for is 10% for the VA as well. I used a VSO rep and claimed financial hardship and I'm getting nowhere. Everything I see says they should only take 10% back. Looking to see if anyone else is struggling with the same issue.
 

RonG

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#4
I was only discharged for one thing, rated 10%. I have multiple ratings for the VA, one alone is 100%. The disability that I was discharged for is 10% for the VA as well. I used a VSO rep and claimed financial hardship and I'm getting nowhere. Everything I see says they should only take 10% back. Looking to see if anyone else is struggling with the same issue.
The disability severance pay was not calculated using 10%; the 10% basically made you eligible for the disability severance pay.

One must meet all of the following requirements to be eligible for disability severance pay:
  • be found unfit for duty,
  • have less than 20 years of service,
  • and have a disability rating of less than 30%.

Prior to January 28, 2008 members were required to have at least 6 months of service to qualify for discharge with severance pay. This rule no longer applies.

If you were discharged with severance pay, you cannot go back on active duty or choose to apply for retirement later. However, you may be eligible to apply for monthly disability compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) if the VA determines your disability is service-connected.

Calculation and Payment (Note the absence of a disability percentage in the formula)

Disability severance pay is a one-time lump sum payment. The amount equals 2 months of basic pay for each year of service which includes active service and inactive duty points, but the total service years cannot exceed 19 years. Additionally, the minimum number of years required for computation purposes is six years for a disability incurred in the line of duty in a combat zone, or 3 years in the case of any other member. Prior to January 28, 2008, a maximum of 12 years and minimum of three years creditable service was used.

Ron
 

TG7879

Registered Member
#5
Right. When I was permanently discharged (I was TDRL for 15 mos). I was told that when my disability severance was recouped it could only be taken back for the conditions/rate I was paid for. Which was one unfitting condition rated at 10%, this condition has the same rating under the VA. For my VA disability compensation this is the lowest rated condition I have. I'm being compensated for so many other issues that rate so much higher. One of my VA compensable conditions alone is rated 100%. So how is it possible for them to deduct over 50% of my compensation? From what my service rep explained to me when I was weighing my options and what the other members on this board are saying I should only be repaying for the one condition I was discharged for.
 

oddpedestrian

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#6
Right, but they will still recoup the WHOLE severance if you are rated at all for the same rating the only issue I have is the amount that is being taken to repay the debt. I wonder if they are treating it as an overdue debt you got to contact someone tomorrow at the VA that knows more about your situation is this handled by the Debt Management Center? if it is contact them first.
 

RonG

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#7
Re: “One of my VA compensable conditions alone is rated 100%. So how is it possible for them to deduct over 50% of my compensation? From what my service rep explained to me when I was weighing my options and what the other members on this board are saying I should only be repaying for the one condition I was discharged for.”

I think this includes your situation.
M21-1, Part III, Subpart v, Chapter 4, Section B - Recoupment of Separation Benefits



https://www.knowva.ebenefits.va.gov...tion-B---Recoupment-of-Separation-Benefits#3g

——
Recommend you or your VSO contact the VA as suggested by oddpedestrian.

My interpretation of the reference is that it prescribes the rate of collection. The VA can better advise you...

Ron
 
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mxridr

PEB Forum Veteran
Registered Member
#8
Yes they will take back all of the severance pay you received as you are getting VA compensation. I didn’t get severance pay but I find it silly for them to give you severance pay for it to be taken back. I would say reach out to the VA to have the monthly repayment amount adjusted.
 
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