Special Monthly Compensation ratings are extremely complex. By meeting certain VA medical requirements, a veteran may be entitled to additional monthly benefits and other VA assistance for daily activities.
It is important that you consult your service representative for assistance with determining eligibility and filing or maintaining claims for such ratings. It is considered an additional compensation on top of regular disability, where a Veteran has incurred the loss or loss of use of specific organs or extremities. Some injuries are so extreme in nature and result in several additional debilitating residual conditions that can have additional adverse affects on an individual’s socioeconomic state.
Loss, or loss of use, is described as either an amputation or, having no effective remaining function of an extremity or organ. The disabilities VA can consider for SMC include:
- loss, or loss of use, of a hand or foot
- immobility of a joint or paralysis
- loss of sight of an eye (having only light perception)
- loss, or loss of use, of a reproductive organ
- complete loss, or loss of use, of both buttocks
- deafness of both ears (having absence of air and bone conduction)
- inability to communicate by speech (complete organic aphonia)
- loss of a percentage of tissue from a single breast, or both breasts, from mastectomy or radiation treatment
Individuals of this nature are in additional need of advanced levels of aid and attendance.
To better assist with meeting the specialized needs of these individuals, additional benefits are available under Special Monthly Compensation (SMC) ratings provided under Title 38 of U.S.C. 1114. These ratings are in addition to the numerical ratings established under the standard rating schedule and are identified by letters such as SMC (k), SMC (l), SMC (m), SMC (n), SMC (o), SMC(p), SMC (r), SMC (s) and the recently added SMC (t).
These rates are simply named after the subsections of the Code of Federal Regulations that outline the required eligibility requirements for each level of SMC. SMC provides additional monetary compensation awards and where applicable can establish entitlement to additional ancillary benefits such as the VA’s Specially Adapted Housing Grant and the Automobile and Adaptive Equipment Grants.
How to Apply for Special Monthly Compensation:
You should contact your nearest VA Regional Office to apply for special monthly compensation (SMC).
When submitting a claim for SMC, you should also submit any medical evidence (doctor and hospital reports) you have to support the claim.
FAQ’S regarding SMC
Can a Veteran Receive Additional Payments for Serious Disabilities?
VA can pay additional compensation to a veteran who, as a result of military service, incurred the loss or loss of use of specific organs or extremities.
What if I Have a Combination of These Disabilities?
The VA will pay higher rates for combinations of these disabilities such as loss or loss of use of the feet, legs, hands, and arms, in specific monetary increments, based on the particular combination of the disabilities. There are also higher payments for various combinations of severe deafness with bilateral blindness.
Additional SMC is available if a veteran is service connected for paraplegia, with complete loss of bowel and bladder control.
In addition, if you have other service-connected disabilities that, in combination with the above special monthly compensation, meet certain criteria, a higher amount of SMC can also be considered.
Can VA Pay SMC for Being Bedridden, Housebound, or in Need of the Aid and Attendance of Another Person?
If a veteran is service connected at the 100% rate and is housebound, bedridden, or is so helpless to need the aid and attendance of another person, then consideration of payment of additional SMC can be considered. The amount of SMC will vary depending on the level of aid and attendance needed.