You might not think of a scar you get from a service-connected injury to be a disability, but the VA does. Depending on the size and appearance of the scar, the VA could award you disability benefits for such scarring along with benefits for the injury that led to the scarring. Even if the injury itself did not result in any lasting impairment, permanent scarring can lead to a disability award.

Scars can be both physically and emotionally painful. The more prominent or disfiguring the scar, the more emotional distress it can cause for you and the more you might find it difficult to go out in public. These are all consequences that the VA takes into consideration when evaluating your disability claim for scarring.

VA scarring

What the VA Looks at When Evaluating Your Scars

There are eight features that can be present with your scars that the VA will evaluate when deciding what disability rating to award you. These disfiguring characteristics are:

  • How long the scar is
  • How wide the scar is at its widest point
  • Whether the scar tissue rises or sinks when it is pressed upon
  • Whether the scar tissue is adhered to the skin underneath
  • If discoloration is present on an area greater than six square inches
  • If there is abnormal texture on an area greater than six square inches
  • Whether more than six square inches of soft tissue under the scar is missing
  • Whether more than six square inches of skin is inflexible or hardened

The VA also takes into account where the scars are located and will evaluate multiple scars separately.

VA Ratings for Scarring

If you have scarring on your head, neck, or face, you can get a rating up to 80 percent. This reflects scars with “gross distortion” of your nose, chin, forehead, eyes, lips, cheeks, or ears. You can also reach this rating if your scars have six or more disfiguring characteristics.

For deep scarring on other parts of your body, your maximum disability rating would be 40 percent. This would be for scarring that occupies at least 144 square inches of your body or more.

Painful scars or scars that are frequently peeling can be rated up to 30 percent. This rating is awarded to veterans with five or more scars.

Other superficial scars can earn a maximum rating of up to ten percent.

Get Help Reviewing Your Claim from Veterans Law Attorneys

Veterans in the Cincinnati area or elsewhere in Ohio who filed a disability claim for scarring or its effects and received a low disability rating should visit with us at Veterans Law Attorneys. Call (866) 894-9773 or contact us online and set up a consultation with us. 

We will review your letter and records and can advise you if you deserve more for your scarring injuries. If the VA did not appropriately score your scars and other injuries, we will help you get the benefits you deserve through the appeals process.

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