100% TDIU and 90% service connected


Hi Jim I’m a service-connected veteran 100% unemployable, but 90% service-connected. I suffer from chronic pain: I have the hinge brace knee brace in my knees,  had three knee surgeries way to braces on my wrist and I walk with a cane. Now I’m seeing a psychologist at the VA for depression due to chronic pain,  so what evidence do I need to apply for service connected on the chronic pain?  And also do I qualify for SMC?  Any help you could give me would be appreciated.  And thank you for your service.

Jim's Reply:

I have doubts that you're eligible for any increases...you're already at 100%...the TDIU is a 100% benefit, no different than a 100% schedular rating. The chronic pain is (at least in theory) a part of your current condition evaluation and rating so you can't file for that. The recent news about pain as a stand alone condition can be confusing but that's mostly for conditions that don't have an identified root cause...you have the cause of the pain you suffer identified already. You may want to consider filing for the depression as a secondary condition but I'm not able to say that would increase your rating if you weren't rated at least 60% for a mental health condition.