What is a VA Form 21-8940?

I want to talk to you about a situation that happens to many veterans. They apply for an increased rating and VA starts processing their claim.  Then, VA sends them a letter that contains a VA form 21-8940.

Why did VA send me a Form 21-8940?

The short answer is VA is probably just doing their job.  The Form 21-8940 is one of the supplemental forms that is required when making an application for TDIU (also known as individual unemployability benefits).

Orthopedic doctor shoulder patient Under the law, VA has certain duties and responsibilities to you to help identify and develop particular claims.  When you file for an increased rating, you have claimed that your service-connected disability has increased.  If your claim for that increase has evidence that you are unemployable, then that triggers VA’s duty to send you this application for TDIU benefits.

What happens if I do not respond to the Form 21-8940?

First off, you need to respond and submit the information requested on that form within 30 days of VA sending it to you. If you do not respond within that time frame, then VA’s own rules say that they will administratively deny your claim for TDIU.

It does not matter what sort of evidence you have of unemployability.  If they send you that form and you do not complete it send it back to them, then you’re going to receive a denial on TDIU benefits.

If that happens, it does not mean your whole TDIU claim has gone down the tank.  VA should still consider the other claims that you made for increased ratings.

So, if you are seeking an increase from 50 to 70 on your PTSD, VA will not adjudicate your TDIU claim without the Form 8940.  But, VA should still consider whether your PTSD has increased in severity and should be evaluated at perhaps 70 percent or even 100 percent schedular.

Do I need to fill out the Form 21-8940?

The Form 21-8940 is required to substantially complete an application for TDIU.  Just the application for the increased rating is probably not enough. VA rules and regulations require the 21-8940.

If you got one of these in mail, it means VA probably has picked up on something.  You may be eligible for TDIU benefits.  Maybe you did not think to apply for them.

Man with headache trying to fall asleep in bed with medication on nightstand VA is now sending you the form and telling you that you need to fill this form out and send it back if you want to apply for TDIU.  It is probably not a mistake by VA.  If you want to proceed with seeking TDIU benefits, then you should complete the form.

TDIU provides an opportunity to receive benefits at a 100 percent rating level when your service-connected disabilities make you unemployable.   If you are not working or have found it difficult to obtain and maintain employment, then VA has sort of done you a favor by sending you this form.  So, you should strongly consider filling it out and sending it back to them within 30 days.  That should substantially complete your application for TDIU, and VA should issue a decision.

What if I have other questions about TDIU or receive a denial from VA?

If you get a denial or if you have questions anywhere in the TDIU process, I would encourage you to reach out to us.  We provide free veterans disability benefits consultations to veterans and their families.

If you would like to learn more about how our free consultation process works, just read this short article that explains the process in more detail.  If you want to go ahead and get the process started, just complete and submit this free consultation request form or call our office at (770) 214-8885.

Travis Studdard is an attorney who focuses on representing veterans in VA disability compensation claims.  He regularly writes about issues that are important to veterans and their families.

You can subscribe to his Veterans Disability channel on YouTube.

I could not have asked for a better lawyer to represent my worker comp. case. Any questions I had during the process was always answered in a timely manner. Mr. Perkins really cared about insuring that I wasn't being taken advantage of during this process and helped us reach a settlement that I feel comfortable with. I would recommend this firm to my parents or children.syndel Laber
I'm so thankful and grateful for all the hard work Jason, Tina and Liz did for me. They went above and beyond to get the best outcome for me. They took the to explain everything that was going on with my case again I'm so thankful grateful and happy with the outcome of my workers comp case.Adrian Adams
First off, I must say thank you again to the office of Perkins Studdard. I appreciate all the hard work and dedication your office has shown to achieve a successful and happy outcome. You have forever changed my family’s life! Also, I wanted to give a special shoutout to Jessica Hyatt for her excellent attitude, advice, and overall professionalism throughout every step of this process. This journey has finally been complete after more than a decade of being denied and almost giving up. However, two of my old coworkers advised me that the office of Perkins Studdard had also successfully helped them achieve their proper rating too. Needless to say, this has been one of my best decisions in life. I can now sleep a little better and stress free knowing I finally got what I deserved all along. Once again, thank you for everything! And shoutout to Travis Studdard, “we did it.” Respectfully, Jonathon FloresJonathon Flores
My family and I are so grateful for Jason Perkins and his team. Jason explains thing's to detail and walks you through every step of your case. I would highly recommend Perkins Studdard for your legal needs. Thank you so much Jason and Tina!Chapin & Lea Anne Warner
The best I know for workers comp attorney'sDenise Williams
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Thank you so much ! I received excellent representation from the entire Perkins Studdard Law firm, my VA claim was resolved and granted in a timely manner, they were hands on with me during the entire process. I would definitely recommend the firm to any veteran deciding to file a VA claim.Darrell Lynn
I would like to thank the law firm of Perkins-Studdard (Travis) and his team, for performing such an outstanding job, at every possible level, during my recent situation with the VA Disability Claims . From the first time I called and spoke with Mr Studdard with an overview of my situation, until the final settlement was executed (successfully I may add), I always felt that I was in good hands with this firm. Everyone in the office, Jessica, and April were responsive, approachable, knowledgeable, good listeners, and extremely professional. Mr. Studdard was realistic of the circumstances and of the potential difficult process that would lay ahead, should I proceed. I can’t say enough about Travis, and I will always be thankful to him. Travis was committed, and he instilled a real sense of confidence during both the highs and the lows. He ultimately prevailed and the outcome was very much in my favor. Of course, each case is different on its own merits and one can never predict how things ultimately will turn out. All I know is that the settlement far exceeded my expectation. Mr. Studdard has been a blessing to me. I strongly recommend that anyone who would find themselves in a similar legal situation with the VA to contact Law Offices of Perkins Studdard for a consultation. It was a very positive experience given the circumstances. Thank you again, I shall forever be in your debt.Concetta Hogg
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Travis and his team have been a blessing for me and my family. They have done an amazing job in helping me navigate the VA appeals process. They kept their eye on the ball all the way through the long, difficult and confusing process. I highly recommend Travis and his team because thanks to their professionalism and know how, I got the benefits I deserve.Daniel patriot

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