Non-Service-Connected Disability Pension

38 USC 1521 - Veterans of a period of war

(a) The Secretary shall pay to each veteran of a period of war who meets the service requirements of this section (as prescribed in subsection (j) of this section) and who is permanently and totally disabled from non-service-connected disability not the result of the veterans willful misconduct, pension at the rate prescribed by this section, as increased from time to time under section 5312 of this title.
(b) If the veteran is unmarried (or married but not living with or reasonably contributing to the support of such veterans spouse) and there is no child of the veteran in the custody of the veteran or to whose support the veteran is reasonably contributing, and unless the veteran is entitled to pension at the rate provided by subsection (d)(1) or (e) of this section, pension shall be paid to the veteran at the annual rate of $3,550, reduced by the amount of the veterans annual income.
(c) If the veteran is married and living with or reasonably contributing to the support of such veterans spouse, or if there is a child of the veteran in the custody of the veteran or to whose support the veteran is reasonably contributing, pension shall be paid to the veteran at the annual rate of $4,651, unless the veteran is entitled to pension at the rate provided by subsection (d)(2), (e), or (f) of this section. If the veteran has two or more such family members, such annual rate shall be increased by $600 for each such family member in excess of one. The rate payable shall be reduced by the amount of the veterans annual income and, subject to subsection (h)(1) of this section, the amount of annual income of such family members.
(d) 

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(1) If the veteran is in need of regular aid and attendance, the annual rate of pension payable to the veteran under subsection (b) of this section shall be $5,680, reduced by the amount of the veterans annual income.
(2) If the veteran is in need of regular aid and attendance, the annual rate of pension payable to the veteran under subsection (c) of this section shall be $6,781. If such veteran has two or more family members, as described in subsection (c) of this section, the annual rate of pension shall be increased by $600 for each such family member in excess of one. The rate payable shall be reduced by the amount of the veterans annual income and, subject to subsection (h)(1) of this section, the amount of annual income of such family members.
(e) If the veteran has a disability rated as permanent and total and
(1)  has additional disability or disabilities independently ratable at 60 per centum or more, or
(2)  by reason of a disability or disabilities, is permanently housebound but does not qualify for pension at the aid and attendance rate provided by subsection (d) of this section, the annual rate of pension payable to the veteran under subsection (b) of this section shall be $4,340 and the annual rate of pension payable to the veteran under subsection (c) of this section shall be $5,441. If such veteran has two or more family members, as described in subsection (c) of this section, the annual rate of pension shall be increased by $600 for each such family member in excess of one. The rate payable shall be reduced by the amount of the veterans annual income and, subject to subsection (h)(1) of this section, the annual income of such family members.
(f) 
(1) If two veterans are married to one another and each meets the disability and service requirements prescribed in subsections (a) and (j), respectively, of this section, or the age and service requirements prescribed in section 1513 of this title, the annual rate of pension payable to such veterans shall be a combined annual rate of $4,651.
(2) If either such veteran is in need of regular aid and attendance, the annual rate provided by paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be $6,781. If both such veterans are in need of regular aid and attendance, such rate shall be $8,911.
(3) If either such veteran would be entitled (if not married to a veteran) to pension at the rate provided by subsection (e) of this section, the annual rate provided by paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be $5,441. If both such veterans would be entitled (if not married to one another) to such rate, such rate shall be $6,231.
(4) If one such veteran is in need of regular aid and attendance and the other would be entitled (if not married to a veteran) to the rate provided for under subsection (e) of this section, the annual rate provided by paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be $7,571.

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(5) The annual rate provided by paragraph (1), (2), (3), or (4) of this subsection, as appropriate, shall
(A)  be increased by $600 for each child of such veterans (or of either such veteran) who is in the custody of either or both such veterans or to whose support either such veteran is, or both such veterans are, reasonably contributing, and
(B)  be reduced by the amount of the annual income of both such veterans and, subject to subsection (h)(1) of this section, the annual income of each such child.
(g) The annual rate of pension payable under subsection (b), (c), (d), (e), or (f) of this section to any veteran who is a veteran of a period of war shall be increased by $800 if veterans of such period of war were not provided educational benefits or home loan benefits similar to those provided to veterans of later periods of war under chapters 34 and 37, respectively, of this title or under prior corresponding provisions of law.
(h) For the purposes of this section:
(1) In determining the annual income of a veteran, if there is a child of the veteran who is in the custody of the veteran or to whose support the veteran is reasonably contributing, that portion of the annual income of the child that is reasonably available to or for the veteran shall be considered to be income of the veteran, unless in the judgment of the Secretary to do so would work a hardship on the veteran.
(2) A veteran shall be considered as living with a spouse, even though they reside apart, unless they are estranged.
(i) If the veteran is entitled under this section to pension on the basis of such veterans own service and is also entitled to pension on the basis of any other persons service, the Secretary shall pay such veteran only the greater benefit.
(j) A veteran meets the service requirements of this section if such veteran served in the active military, naval, or air service
(1) for ninety days or more during a period of war;
(2) during a period of war and was discharged or released from such service for a service-connected disability;
(3) for a period of ninety consecutive days or more and such period began or ended during a period of war; or
(4) for an aggregate of ninety days or more in two or more separate periods of service during more than one period of war.

38 USC 1522 - Net worth limitation

(a) The Secretary shall deny or discontinue the payment of pension to a veteran under section 1513 or 1521 of this title when the corpus of the estate of the veteran or, if the veteran has a spouse, the corpus of the estates of the veteran and of the veterans spouse is such that under all the circumstances, including consideration of the annual income of the veteran, the veterans spouse, and the veterans children, it is reasonable that some part of the corpus of such estates be consumed for the veterans maintenance.
(b) The Secretary shall deny or discontinue the payment of increased pension under subsection (c), (d), (e), or (f) of section 1521 of this title on account of a child when the corpus of such childs estate is such that under all the circumstances, including consideration of the veterans and spouses income, and the income of the veterans children, it is reasonable that some part of the corpus of such childs estate be consumed for the childs maintenance. During the period such denial or discontinuance remains in effect, such child shall not be considered as the veterans child for purposes of this chapter.

38 USC 1523 - Combination of ratings

(a) The Secretary shall provide that, for the purpose of determining whether or not a veteran is permanently and totally disabled, ratings for service-connected disabilities may be combined with ratings for non-service-connected disabilities.
(b) Where a veteran, by virtue of subsection (a), is found to be entitled to a pension under section 1521 of this title, and is entitled to compensation for a service-connected disability, the Secretary shall pay such veteran the greater benefit.

38 USC 1524 - Vocational training for certain pension recipients

(a) 
(1) In the case of a veteran under age 45 who is awarded a pension during the program period, the Secretary shall, based on information on file with the Department of Veterans Affairs, make a preliminary finding whether such veteran, with the assistance of a vocational training program under this section, has a good potential for achieving employment. If such potential is found to exist, the Secretary shall solicit from the veteran an application for vocational training under this section. If the veteran thereafter applies for such training, the Secretary shall provide the veteran with an evaluation, which may include a personal interview, to determine whether the achievement of a vocational goal is reasonably feasible.
(2) If a veteran who is 45 years of age or older and is awarded pension during the program period, or a veteran who was awarded pension before the beginning of the program period, applies for vocational training under this section and the Secretary makes a preliminary finding on the basis of information in the application that, with the assistance of a vocational training program under subsection (b) of this section, the veteran has a good potential for achieving employment, the Secretary shall provide the veteran with an evaluation in order to determine whether the achievement of a vocational goal by the veteran is reasonably feasible. Any such evaluation shall include a personal interview by a Department employee trained in vocational counseling.
(3) For the purposes of this section, the term program period means the period beginning on February 1, 1985, and ending on December 31, 1995.
(b) 
(1) If the Secretary, based upon an evaluation under subsection (a) of this section, determines that the achievement of a vocational goal by a veteran is reasonably feasible, the veteran shall be offered and may elect to pursue a vocational training program under this subsection. If the veteran elects to pursue such a program, the program shall be designed in consultation with the veteran in order to meet the veterans individual needs and shall be set forth in an individualized written plan of vocational rehabilitation of the kind described in section 3107 of this title.
(2) 
(A) Subject to subparagraph (B) of this paragraph, a vocational training program under this subsection shall consist of vocationally oriented services and assistance of the kind provided under chapter 31 of this title and such other services and assistance of the kind provided under that chapter as are necessary to enable the veteran to prepare for and participate in vocational training or employment.
(B) A vocational training program under this subsection
(i) may not exceed 24 months unless, based on a determination by the Secretary that an extension is necessary in order for the veteran to achieve a vocational goal identified (before the end of the first 24 months of such program) in the written plan formulated for the veteran, the Secretary grants an extension for a period not to exceed 24 months;
(ii) may not include the provision of any loan or subsistence allowance or any automobile adaptive equipment of the kind provided under chapter 39 of this title; and
(iii) may include a program of education at an institution of higher learning (as defined in sections 3452 (b) and 3452 (f), respectively, of this title) only in a case in which the Secretary determines that the program involved is predominantly vocational in content.
(3) When a veteran completes a vocational training program under this subsection, the Secretary may provide the veteran with counseling of the kind described in section 3104 (a)(2) of this title, placement and postplacement services of the kind described in section 3104 (a)(5) of this title, and training of the kind described in section 3104 (a)(6) of this title during a period not to exceed 18 months beginning on the date of such completion.
(4) A veteran may not begin pursuit of a vocational training program under this subsection after the later of
(A)  December 31, 1995, or
(B)  the end of a reasonable period of time, as determined by the Secretary, following either the evaluation of the veteran under subsection (a) of this section or the award of pension to the veteran as described in subsection (a)(2) of this section. Any determination by the Secretary of such a reasonable period of time shall be made pursuant to regulations which the Secretary shall prescribe.
(c) In the case of a veteran who has been determined to have a permanent and total non-service-connected disability and who, not later than one year after the date the veterans eligibility for counseling under subsection (b)(3) of this section expires, secures employment within the scope of a vocational goal identified in the veterans individualized written plan of vocational rehabilitation (or in a related field which requires reasonably developed skills and the use of some or all of the training or services furnished the veteran under such plan), the evaluation of the veteran as having a permanent and total disability may not be terminated by reason of the veterans capacity to engage in such employment until the veteran first maintains such employment for a period of not less than 12 consecutive months.
(d) A veteran who pursues a vocational training program under subsection (b) of this section shall have the benefit of the provisions of subsection (a) of section 1525 of this title beginning at such time as the veterans entitlement to pension is terminated by reason of income from work or training (as defined in subsection (b)(1) of that section) without regard to the date on which the veterans entitlement to pension is terminated.
(e) Payments by the Secretary for education, training, and other services and assistance under subsection (b) of this section (other than the services of Department employees) shall be made from the Department appropriations account from which payments for pension are made.

38 USC 1525 - Protection of health-care eligibility

(a) In the case of a veteran whose entitlement to pension is terminated after January 31, 1985, by reason of income from work or training, the veteran shall retain for a period of three years beginning on the date of such termination all eligibility for care and services under such chapter that the veteran would have had if the veterans entitlement to pension had not been terminated. Care and services for which such a veteran retains eligibility include, when applicable, drugs and medicines under section 1712 (d) of this title.
(b) For purposes of this section, the term terminated by reason of income from work or training means terminated as a result of the veterans receipt of earnings from activity performed for remuneration or with gain, but only if the veterans annual income from sources other than such earnings would, taken alone, not result in the termination of the veterans pension.