Law Office of Amy B. Van Fossen, P.A. - Elder Law

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Ways you may lose VA benefits

Adjusting back to civilian life is difficult enough under normal circumstances. Adding disability to the equation can make it even more challenging. Fortunately, you can receive financial benefits as a disabled veteran, whether old or young, to make things easier. 

Do you wonder how long your benefits will last and what can cause them to stop? General information is as follows, but for answers specific to your case, speak to a VA-accredited attorney.


The VA reexamines disabilities periodically to determine if you are still eligible to receive benefits based on a rating. This rating may go up, down or stay the same, depending on how much you have improved. If you are elderly, your disability is permanent or your rating is already at the lowest for your injury, you may not be subject to a reexamination and may have protected rates. 


Sometimes, veterans get into trouble with the law. A felony conviction and imprisonment beyond 60 days result in a reduction of disability benefits and termination of pension. Education benefits remain if you are not a felon and are restricted if you are. However, you can regain most if not all benefits once you are out of prison and have met additional requirements. Benefits do not change if you are only in a halfway house or work release program.

Criminal activity

If the VA finds that you have falsified information to receive benefits, you will lose these privileges. Not paying court-ordered child and/or spousal support can possibly lead to garnishment. Also, committing a serious crime, such as treason, will automatically and permanently end your access to benefits.

Invalid reasons for benefit loss

Some situations that may concern you do not lead to benefit loss. For example, in a divorce, your benefits are not part of marital property, and, therefore, are not a part of asset division. Likewise, creditors cannot take your benefits to repay debt.