VA Special Monthly Compensation (SMC) Rate Helper
  • Navigate through each of the following screens using the "NEXT" button, and if necessary the "PREV" button. On each screen, check each checkbox that corresponds to a condition the veteran has.
  • For STEP 1: The total conditions checked will automatically display in the Total SMC-K Conditions input textbox.
  • For STEP 2 through STEP 9: Select an SMC Level from the drop-down select according to the instructions.
  • Activate the "ADDITIONAL INFORMATION" tab to read more information regarding conditions that have "(See INFO #)." Select the anchor "INFO #" that corresponds to the condition above.
  • To receive a printout of a screen, activate the "PRINT" button and follow through.
  • To reset the app, activate the "RESET" button.

NOTE: When you leave this page or click refresh, all the values you entered will be cleared.

 

Help to Determine VA SMC Rates

STATUTORY RATES

INTERMEDIATE OR NEXT HIGHER RATE

SPECIAL RATES

STATUTORY RATES
STEP 1: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: SMC-K.

SMC-K

Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(k)

Payable for any of the following conditions. Check qualifying. (See INFO 1)

INSTRUCTION: Although veterans may receive up to three (3) SMC-K Awards, still check all qualifying conditions. The total conditions checked will automatically display in the Total SMC-K Conditions textbox below.

NOTE 1: SMC-K compensation is payable in addition to:

  • The basic rate of compensation (using disability rating percentage) or SMC-S, provided that the combined rate of compensation does not exceed the monthly rate of SMC-L.
  • SMC-L through SMC-N1/2, provided that the combined rate of compensation does not exceed the monthly rate of SMC-O.

NOTE 2: SMC-K compensation may not be combined with SMC-O, SMC-R, SMC-T, and SMC-Q.

STEP 2: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: One (1) of the Other SMC Levels (SMC-L through SMC-O).

SMC-L

Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(l)

Payable for any of the following conditions. Check qualifying.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked any of these conditions, then select "SMC-L" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

SMC-M

Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(m)

Payable for any of the following conditions. Check qualifying.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked any of these conditions, then select "SMC-M" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

SMC-N

Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(n)

Payable for any of the following conditions. Check qualifying.

*Amputation is a prerequisite. If a prosthesis cannot be worn at the present level of amputation but could be applied if there were a reamputation at a higher level, the requirements are not met; instead, consideration will be given to loss of natural elbow or knee action.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked any of these conditions, then select "SMC-N" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

SMC-O

Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(o)

Payable for any of the following conditions. Check qualifying.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked any of these conditions, then select "SMC-O" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

INTERMEDIATE OR NEXT HIGHER RATE

SMC-P

Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(p)

The rates under SMC-P are given when a disabled veteran has multiple conditions with combinations involving extremities, blindness, deafness, and/or additional independent disabilities. Rates get increased "1/2 step" or "full step" from SMC-L through SMC-O. The rate of "SMC-P" is given when qualifying for an increase that would exceed the rate of SMC-O, since the compensation amounts are equivalent. The conditions for SMC-O and SMC-P will be used to help determine whether a disabled veteran qualifies for SMC-R.1 or SMC-R.2.

INSTRUCTION 1: If a SMC Level was NOT selected from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below, skip to STEP 8, SMC-S.

INSTRUCTION 2: If a SMC Level was selected from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below AND the veteran may qualify for an increase due to:

  • Extremities, proceed as follows:
     
    • If "SMC-L" selected — activate Next Button below
       
    • If "SMC-M" selected — skip to STEP 3, SMC-M1/2
       
    • If "SMC-N" selected — skip to STEP 3, SMC-N1/2
       
    • If "SMC-O" selected — proceed to next bullet
       
  • Eyes, Bilateral, and Blindness in Connection with Deafness and/or Loss or Loss of Use of a Hand or Foot, skip to STEP 4.
     
  • Additional Single Permanent Disability or Combinations of Permanent Disabilities Independently Ratable at 50 Percent or More, skip to STEP 5.
     
  • Three Extremities, skip to STEP 6.

INSTRUCTION 3: After determining whether the veteran is qualified to increase under STEP 3 through STEP 6, then proceed to STEP 7 to see if the veteran qualifies for Special Aid and Attendance Benefit if one of the following are true:

  • "SMC-O" selected for Other SMC Level
  • "SMC-P" selected for Other SMC Level
  • "SMC-N1/2" selected for Other SMC Level AND Total SMC-K Conditions > 0
STEP 3: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: An Increase due to Extremities.

SMC-L1/2

Arithmetic mean, rounded to the nearest dollar, between rates 38 U.S.C. 1114(l) and (m)

Payable for any of the following conditions. Check qualifying.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked any of these conditions AND the rate you selected previously is less than SMC-L1/2, then select "SMC-L1/2" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

SMC-M

Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(m)

Payable for any of the following conditions. Check qualifying.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked any of these conditions AND the rate you selected previously is less than SMC-M, then select "SMC-M" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

SMC-M1/2

Arithmetic mean, rounded to the nearest dollar, between rates 38 U.S.C. 1114(m) and (n)

Payable for any of the following conditions. Check qualifying.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked any of these conditions AND the rate you selected previously is less than SMC-M1/2, then select "SMC-M1/2" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

SMC-N

Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(n)

Payable for the following conditions. Check if qualifies.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked this AND the rate you selected previously is less than SMC-N, then select "SMC-N" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

SMC-N1/2

Arithmetic mean, rounded to the nearest dollar, between 38 U.S.C. 1114(n) and (o)

Payable for the following conditions. Check if qualifies.

INSTRUCTION: If you checked this AND the rate you selected previously is less than SMC-N1/2, then select "SMC-N1/2" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

STEP 4: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: An Increase due to Eyes, Bilateral, and Blindness in Connection with Deafness and/or Loss or Loss of Use of a Hand or Foot.

INSTRUCTION 1: If you check any condition (i) through (iii) below AND the rate shown is higher than what is currently selected on the Other SMC Level drop-down select, then select that rate from the drop-down select.

INSTRUCTION 2: If you check any of the conditions (iv) through (vii) below, then select the higher rate according to the amount noted (increase "1/2 step" or "full step") from the Other SMC Level drop-down select. If the increase will make the rate exceed SMC-O, then select SMC-P.

     (vii) Blindness in both eyes rated under 38 U.S.C. 1114 (l), (m) or (n), or under the intermediate or next higher rate provisions, when accompanied by one of the following:

STEP 5: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: An Increase due to Additional Independent Disabilities.

NOTE 1: Where the multiple loss or loss of use entitlement to a statutory or intermediate rate between 38 U.S.C. 1114 (l) and (o) is caused by the same etiological disease or injury, that disease or injury may not serve as the basis for the independent 50 percent or 100 percent unless it is so rated without regard to the loss or loss of use.

NOTE 2: The graduated ratings for arrested tuberculosis will not be utilized in this connection, but the permanent residuals of tuberculosis may be utilized.

INSTRUCTION: If you check either of these conditions, then select the higher rate according to the amount noted (increase "1/2 step" or "full step") from the Other SMC Level drop-down select. If the increase will make the rate exceed SMC-O, then select SMC-P.

STEP 6: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: An Increase due to Three Extremities.

INSTRUCTION: If you check this, then increase the rate "1/2 step" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below. If the increase will make the rate exceed SMC-O, then select "SMC-P".

SPECIAL RATES
STEP 7: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: Special Aid and Attendance Benefit.

SMC-R

Special aid and attendance benefit; 38 U.S.C. 1114(r)

NOTE: Amount of the allowance. The amount of the additional allowance payable to a veteran in need of regular aid and attendance is specified in 38 U.S.C. 1114(r)(1). The amount of the additional allowance payable to a veteran in need of a higher level of care is specified in 38 U.S.C. 1114(r)(2). The higher level aid and attendance allowance authorized by 38 U.S.C. 1114(r)(2) is payable in lieu of the regular aid and attendance allowance authorized by 38 U.S.C. 1114(r)(1).

INSTRUCTION: If one of these are checked, then appropriately select "SMC-R.1" or "SMC-R.2" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

STEP 8: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: Total plus 60 Percent, or Housebound.

SMC-S

Total plus 60 percent, or housebound; 38 U.S.C. 1114(s)

The special monthly compensation provided by 38 U.S.C. 1114(s) is payable where the veteran has a single service-connected disability rated as 100 percent and,

INSTRUCTION: If either of the above checked AND a SMC Level has not been selected yet from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below, then select "SMC-S".

NOTE: The compensation for rate SMC-S is less than for rates SMC-L through SMC-R (except SMC-Q).

STEP 9: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: Special Aid and Attendance Benefit Due to Residuals of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).

SMC-T

Need for A&A for Residuals of TBI; 38 U.S.C. 1114(t)

The veteran must meet all requirements:

INSTRUCTION: If ALL of the above are checked, then select "SMC-T" from the Other SMC Level drop-down select below.

NOTE 1: Entitlement to A&A benefits under SMC-L must be established before considering entitlement to SMC-T.

NOTE 2: The monthly compensation rate for SMC-T is equal to the monthly compensation for SMC at the (r)(2) rate.

STEP 10: Determine if the veteran qualifies for: Inactive Tuberculosis.

SMC-Q

Inactive tuberculosis (complete arrest); 38 U.S.C. 1114(q)

The rating criteria for determining inactivity of tuberculosis are set out in §3.375 (See INFO 12).

NOTE: For a veteran who was not receiving or entitled to receive compensation for tuberculosis on August 19, 1968, the special monthly compensation authorized by this section is not payable. (See STEP 5)





INFO 1    INFO 2    INFO 3    INFO 4    INFO 5    INFO 6    INFO 7    INFO 8    INFO 9    INFO 10    INFO 11    INFO 12

INFO 1 through 10 are excerpts from: §3.350 Special monthly compensation ratings (38 U.S.C. 1114).

INFO 1: Ratings under 38 U.S.C. 1114(k).

…This special compensation is payable in addition to the basic rate of compensation otherwise payable on the basis of degree of disability, provided that the combined rate of compensation does not exceed the monthly rate set forth in 38 U.S.C. 1114(l) when authorized in conjunction with any of the provisions of 38 U.S.C. 1114(a) through (j) or (s). When there is entitlement under 38 U.S.C. 1114 (l) through (n) or an intermediate rate under (p) such additional allowance is payable for each such anatomical loss or loss of use existing in addition to the requirements for the basic rates, provided the total does not exceed the monthly rate set forth in 38 U.S.C. 1114(o). The limitations on the maximum compensation payable under this paragraph are independent of and do not preclude payment of additional compensation for dependents under 38 U.S.C. 1115, or the special allowance for aid and attendance provided by 38 U.S.C. 1114(r).

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INFO 2: Creative organ.

(i) Loss of a creative organ will be shown by acquired absence of one or both testicles (other than undescended testicles) or ovaries or other creative organ. Loss of use of one testicle will be established when examination by a board finds that:

(a) The diameters of the affected testicle are reduced to one-third of the corresponding diameters of the paired normal testicle, or

(b) The diameters of the affected testicle are reduced to one-half or less of the corresponding normal testicle and there is alteration of consistency so that the affected testicle is considerably harder or softer than the corresponding normal testicle; or

(c) If neither of the conditions (a) or (b) is met, when a biopsy, recommended by a board including a genitourologist and accepted by the veteran, establishes the absence of spermatozoa.

(ii) When loss or loss of use of a creative organ resulted from wounds or other trauma sustained in service, or resulted from operations in service for the relief of other conditions, the creative organ becoming incidentally involved, the benefit may be granted.

(iii) Loss or loss of use traceable to an elective operation performed subsequent to service, will not establish entitlement to the benefit. If, however the operation after discharge was required for the correction of a specific injury caused by a preceding operation in service. it will support authorization of the benefit. When the existence of disability is established meeting the above requirements for nonfunctioning testicle due to operation after service, resulting in loss of use, the benefit may be granted even though the operation is one of election. An operation is not considered to be one of election where it is advised on sound medical judgment for the relief of a pathological condition or to prevent possible future pathological consequences.

(iv) Atrophy resulting from mumps followed by orchitis in service is service connected. Since atrophy is usually perceptible within 1 to 6 months after infection subsides, an examination more than 6 months after the subsidence of orchitis demonstrating a normal genitourinary system will be considered in determining rebuttal of service incurrence of atrophy later demonstrated. Mumps not followed by orchitis in service will not suffice as the antecedent cause of subsequent atrophy for the purpose of authorizing the benefit.

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INFO 3: Foot and hand.

Loss of use of a hand or a foot will be held to exist when no effective function remains other than that which would be equally well served by an amputation stump at the site of election below elbow or knee with use of a suitable prosthetic appliance. The determination will be made on the basis of the actual remaining function, whether the acts of grasping, manipulation, etc., in the case of the hand, or of balance, propulsion, etc., in the case of the foot, could be accomplished equally well by an amputation stump with prosthesis; for example:

(a) Extremely unfavorable complete ankylosis of the knee, or complete ankylosis of two major joints of an extremity, or shortening of the lower extremity of 3 1/2 inches or more, will constitute loss of use of the hand or foot involved.

(b) Complete paralysis of the external popliteal nerve (common peroneal) and consequent footdrop, accompanied by characteristic organic changes including trophic and circulatory disturbances and other concomitants confirmatory of complete paralysis of this nerve, will be taken as loss of use of the foot.

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INFO 4: Both buttocks.

(i) Loss of use of both buttocks shall be deemed to exist when there is severe damage by disease or injury to muscle group XVII, bilateral, (diagnostic code 5317) and additional disability making it impossible for the disabled person, without assistance, to rise from a seated position and from a stooped position (fingers to toes position) and to maintain postural stability (the pelvis upon head of femur). The assistance may be done by the person's own hands or arms, and, in the matter of postural stability, by a special appliance.

(ii) Special monthly compensation for loss or loss of use of both lower extremities (38 U.S.C. 1114(l) through (n)) will not preclude additional compensation under 38 U.S.C. 1114(k) for loss of use of both buttocks where appropriate tests clearly substantiate that there is such additional loss.

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INFO 5: Blindness, having only light perception.

Eye. Loss of use or blindness of one eye, having only light perception, will be held to exist when there is inability to recognize test letters at 1 foot and when further examination of the eye reveals that perception of objects, hand movements, or counting fingers cannot be accomplished at 3 feet. Lesser extents of vision, particularly perception of objects, hand movements, or counting fingers at distances less than 3 feet is considered of negligible utility.

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INFO 6: Deafness.

Deafness of both ears, having absence of air and bone conduction will be held to exist where examination in a Department of Veterans Affairs authorized audiology clinic under current testing criteria shows bilateral hearing loss is equal to or greater than the minimum bilateral hearing loss required for a maximum rating evaluation under the rating schedule.

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INFO 7: Aphonia.

Complete organic aphonia will be held to exist where there is a disability of the organs of speech which constantly precludes communication by speech.

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INFO 8: Eyes, bilateral.

5/200 visual acuity or less bilaterally qualifies for entitlement under 38 U.S.C. 1114(l). However, evaluation of 5/200 based on acuity in excess of that degree but less than 10/200 (§4.83 of this chapter) does not qualify. Concentric contraction of the field of vision beyond 5 degrees in both eyes is the equivalent of 5/200 visual acuity.

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INFO 9: Natural elbow or knee action.

In determining whether there is natural elbow or knee action with prosthesis in place, consideration will be based on whether use of the proper prosthetic appliance requires natural use of the joint, or whether necessary motion is otherwise controlled, so that the muscles affecting joint motion, if not already atrophied, will become so. If there is no movement in the joint, as in ankylosis or complete paralysis, use of prosthesis is not to be expected, and the determination will be as though there were one in place.

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INFO 10: Eyes, bilateral.

With visual acuity 5/200 or less or the vision field reduced to 5 degree concentric contraction in both eyes, entitlement on account of need for regular aid and attendance will be determined on the facts in the individual case.

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INFO 11: Need for aid and attendance OR permanently bedridden.

NOTE: Where possible, determinations should be on the basis of permanently bedridden rather than for need of aid and attendance (except where 38 U.S.C. 1114(r) is involved) to avoid reduction during hospitalization where aid and attendance is provided in kind.

§3.352 Criteria for determining need for aid and attendance and "permanently bedridden."

(a) Basic criteria for regular aid and attendance and permanently bedridden. The following will be accorded consideration in determining the need for regular aid and attendance (§3.351(c)(3): inability of claimant to dress or undress himself (herself), or to keep himself (herself) ordinarily clean and presentable; frequent need of adjustment of any special prosthetic or orthopedic appliances which by reason of the particular disability cannot be done without aid (this will not include the adjustment of appliances which normal persons would be unable to adjust without aid, such as supports, belts, lacing at the back, etc.); inability of claimant to feed himself (herself) through loss of coordination of upper extremities or through extreme weakness; inability to attend to the wants of nature; or incapacity, physical or mental, which requires care or assistance on a regular basis to protect the claimant from hazards or dangers incident to his or her daily environment. "Bedridden" will be a proper basis for the determination. For the purpose of this paragraph "bedridden" will be that condition which, through its essential character, actually requires that the claimant remain in bed. The fact that claimant has voluntarily taken to bed or that a physician has prescribed rest in bed for the greater or lesser part of the day to promote convalescence or cure will not suffice. It is not required that all of the disabling conditions enumerated in this paragraph be found to exist before a favorable rating may be made. The particular personal functions which the veteran is unable to perform should be considered in connection with his or her condition as a whole. It is only necessary that the evidence establish that the veteran is so helpless as to need regular aid and attendance, not that there be a constant need. Determinations that the veteran is so helpless, as to be in need of regular aid and attendance will not be based solely upon an opinion that the claimant's condition is such as would require him or her to be in bed. They must be based on the actual requirement of personal assistance from others.

(b) Basic criteria for the higher level aid and attendance allowance.

(1) A veteran is entitled to the higher level aid and attendance allowance authorized by §3.350(h) in lieu of the regular aid and attendance allowance when all of the following conditions are met:

(i) The veteran is entitled to the compensation authorized under 38 U.S.C. 1114(o), or the maximum rate of compensation authorized under 38 U.S.C. 1114(p).

(ii) The veteran meets the requirements for entitlement to the regular aid and attendance allowance in paragraph (a) of this section.

(iii) The veteran needs a "higher level of care" (as defined in paragraph (b)(2) of this section) than is required to establish entitlement to the regular aid and attendance allowance, and in the absence of the provision of such higher level of care the veteran would require hospitalization, nursing home care, or other residential institutional care.

(2) Need for a higher level of care shall be considered to be need for personal health-care services provided on a daily basis in the veteran's home by a person who is licensed to provide such services or who provides such services under the regular supervision of a licensed health-care professional. Personal health-care services include (but are not limited to) such services as physical therapy, administration of injections, placement of indwelling catheters, and the changing of sterile dressings, or like functions which require professional health-care training or the regular supervision of a trained health-care professional to perform. A licensed health-care professional includes (but is not limited to) a doctor of medicine or osteopathy, a registered nurse, a licensed practical nurse, or a physical therapist licensed to practice by a State or political subdivision thereof.

(3) The term "under the regular supervision of a licensed health-care professional", as used in paragraph (b)(2) of this section, means that an unlicensed person performing personal health-care services is following a regimen of personal health-care services prescribed by a health-care professional, and that the health-care professional consults with the unlicensed person providing the health-care services at least once each month to monitor the prescribed regimen. The consultation need not be in person; a telephone call will suffice.

(4) A person performing personal health-care services who is a relative or other member of the veteran's household is not exempted from the requirement that he or she be a licensed health-care professional or be providing such care under the regular supervision of a licensed health-care professional.

(5) The provisions of paragraph (b) of this section are to be strictly construed. The higher level aid-and-attendance allowance is to be granted only when the veteran's need is clearly established and the amount of services required by the veteran on a daily basis is substantial.

(c) Attendance by relative. The performance of the necessary aid and attendance service by a relative of the beneficiary or other member of his or her household will not prevent the granting of the additional allowance. NOTE: Permanently bedridden. Where possible, determinations should be on the basis of permanently bedridden rather than for need of aid and attendance (except where 38 U.S.C. 1114(r) is involved) to avoid reduction during hospitalization where aid and attendance is provided in kind.

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INFO 12: §3.375 Determination of inactivity (complete arrest) in tuberculosis

(a) Pulmonary tuberculosis. A veteran shown to have had pulmonary tuberculosis will be held to have reached a condition of "complete arrest" when a diagnosis of inactive is made.

(b) Nonpulmonary disease. Determination of complete arrest of nonpulmonary tuberculosis requires absence of evidence of activity for 6 months. If there are two or more foci of such tuberculosis, one of which is active, the condition will not be considered to be inactive until the tuberculous process has reached arrest in its entirety.

(c) Arrest following surgery. Where there has been surgical excision of the lesion or organ, the date of complete arrest will be the date of discharge from the hospital, or 6 months from the date of excision, whichever is later.

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