Understanding Combat-Related Special Compensation (CSRC) 

CRSC, otherwise known as Combat-Related Special Compensation, is a VA disability compensation program for selected retirees with combat- or operations-related disabilities. It is one of the programs mandated by Congress that allows retirees to acquire different compensation separate from their VA disability claim, regardless of their rating. 

In today’s blog post, we will explore the complete process of how the CRSC program works and your eligibility as a combat veteran to receive this benefit. 

How does a CRSC work? 

The VA combat-related special compensation program is an additional source of financial support for veterans. It can be one of the 15 free programs for veterans living with disabilities since it differs from VA disability claims assistance, which provides veterans with additional financial gain. 

For eligible retirees to apply for combat service-related compensation, they will be required to submit a DD Form 2860 to the Army CRSC office in Fort Knox, Kentucky, along with the following documents: 

Required Documents: 

  • DD 214s/215s 
  • All complete Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Rating Decisions including:
    • VA Physician Reports
    • VA Medical Records, including the following:
      • VA Letter
      • VA rating decisions
      • VA code sheets

Recommended Documents: 

  • Medical Records 
  • Certificates or narratives 
  • Medical Treatment Facility Records in the Military 
  • Military Orders 
  • Physical Evaluation Board Proceedings

Other Suggested Documents: 

  • Physical Examination conducted by the military 
  • Military Retirement Physical documents  
  • Records or notes from the clinic. 

However, before you send out these documents, you must first verify your eligibility. One of the other processes you may need to understand is the reconsideration of your CRSC claim if your application gets denied, you have obtained a new disability rating, or the disability that is directly connected to your CRSC claim has been altered. 

You may send out direct reconsideration requests to your specific branch office. 

Who is eligible for CSRC? 

Qualifications: 

The following details the qualifications necessary to be eligible for CRSC pay: 

  • Entitlement for receiving military retirement compensation 
  • Rating must be at least 10% according to the evaluation of the VA 
  • Waiving of VA disability claims from retirement pay 
  • Filing of the CRSC application with the veteran’s branch of service 

Disabilities: 

There are different disabilities you may have sustained during combat. Some of them can be the direct outcome of: 

  • Armed Battle 
  • Duties involving extreme danger. E.g., parachuting or flight  
  • Performance of duties that simulate war. E.g., field training 
  • Total effects of war. E.g., Agent Orange or injuries inflicted by weapons 

Selected injuries can be accounted for as presumed to be combat-related when the VA disability rating has a clear indication of the disability, such as a VA rating based on radiation exposure, Agent Orange, or those that served in the Persian Gulf War. 

How is CSRC calculated? 

The CRSC percentage is calculated depending on your VA disability rating, and the combat-related portion is based on your military retirement pay. The formula for the exact calculation can vary since the year of retirement can be subject to updates and modifications. 

The usual CRSC calculation involves subtracting the actual disability percentage from 100%. Suppose that a veteran has three disability ratings of 40%, 30%, and 30%; each should be subtracted to 100% to develop the remaining efficiency. 

  • 100%-40%=60%
  • 100%-30%=70% 
  • 100%-30%=70% 

The remaining efficiencies should then be multiplied.  

  • 60%x70%x70% = 30% (rounded up) 

Note that multiplying percentages differs from multiplying total numbers. It should be converted to an actual decimal point. 60% represents 0.60, not the whole number 6. 

After that, results are subtracted from 100%. 

  • 100%-30%= 70% 
     

The result is then rounded up to the nearest 10%. For 5% above, the percentage should be rounded up, while 4% below is rounded down. 

The final result determines the combined combat disability rating. 

Can you get 100% VA Disability and CSRC? 

Since it is combat-related special pay provided separately from VA disability compensation, it is also essential to understand if it is possible to acquire a 100% VA disability claim and receive CSRC simultaneously. However, receiving this benefit requires meeting specific eligibility criteria. 

If a veteran has a 100% VA disability rating and meets the CRSC criteria due to combat-related disabilities, they can receive both benefits at the same time. CRSC is intended to supplement VA Disability Compensation by compensating for the percentage of retirement earnings that would have been tax-free if not for combat-related injuries. 

Need help with Veteran Coaches? Just4Veterans can help 

If the VA fails to include some of your injuries, you may seek out the help of our veterans’ coaches to ease your worries about filing a VA claim. You may check out our webpage to get some help from your VA claims assistance by clicking the button below.

We guarantee to make it easy and get you the assistance you need. We are a group of dedicated veteran coaches who understand the VA process from the inside out. If filing paperwork is jarring to you, we will commit to making it as seamless as possible. 

Our long list of experience assisting veterans gives us the knowledge to navigate even the most complicated process of filing a claim. You may schedule a strategy call with our veteran coaches here.

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