CRSC – Documenting your disability.
Have you applied for Combat-Related Special Compensation (CRSC)? Or did you start to apply and stop because it was too difficult to document your combat-related injury?
Recreating lost medical records is a daunting task. Make the process easier by using this guidance to document your injuries when you apply for CRSC.
CRSC is monthly, tax-free compensation for certain military retirees that supplements their VA disability pay and retired pay. To apply for CRSC, applicants must meet all the following criteria and have at least one VA-rated, combat-related disability:
• Served at least 20 years active duty or be a Reservist age 60 or older with 20 or more qualifying years;
• Are in retired status;
• Are entitled to retired pay that is offset by VA disability payments; and
• Have at least a 10% VA disability rating.
Combat-related disabilities are those incurred, with documented proof:
• In the performance of duty under conditions simulating war (e.g., exercises, field training);
• While engaged in hazardous service (e.g., flight, diving, parachute duty);
• Through an instrumentality of war (e.g., combat vehicles, weapons, Agent Orange); or
• As a direct result of armed conflict.
To approve your claim, the CRSC Office must know how your injury happened. You need to document your combat-related disability. How? The CRSC Office has supplied the following advice:
How can I document my combat-related disability?
Do you have VA records that document your combat-related disability or military treatment facility (MTF) records that document the injury? If so, submit these documents and the complete VA findings, decisions, reasons and basis with your CRSC claim.
What agencies can help me complete my application?
The following groups are helpful:
• County VA offices
• Major Veteran or Military Service Organizations
• VA hospital counselors
• Your service’s CRSC Office.
I lost my medical records. How do I recreate them?
There are several resources:
a) Contact a VA hospital or MTF and provide them the following records, if available:
1. Your current medical information documenting the injury.
2. Your personnel records proof such as: unit assigned, date assigned, location injured (e.g., 21st Tank Maintenance BN, Jun 1967-Sep 1968, RVN).
3. Your signed statement, claiming how the injury occurred.
4. A signed buddy statement, saying how the injury occurred.
b) Ask a doctor, physician's assistant, nurse, or an officer for a copy of your written medical consultation visit on signed letterhead that states “how” you got each injury.
Where can I get my combat documents?
US Armed Forces Center for Research of Unit Records (USAFCRUR),7779 Ciena Rd., Springfield, VA 22150; (703) 428-6801.NOTE:Can still get Purple Heart awards via records from USAFCRUR. Verifies combat activity from WWII forward by Morning Reports.
Where can I get my personnel records?
National Personnel Records Center (NPRC-MPR), 9700 Page Ave., St. Louis, MO 63132-5100; http://www.archives.gov/st-louis/military-personnel; (314) 801-0800 or call toll-free 1-866-272-6272 and press "4" to be transferred. National Archive Records Agency (NARA),located in 18 states,http://www.archives.gov/research; 1-866-272-6272.
Click here to learn more about getting your military personnel records.
How do I contact the VA?
Call 1-800-827-1000 or go to:
https://www.vba.va.gov/benefits/address.htm or http://www.visn1.med.va.gov/facilities/directory.htm
Obtain a CRSC claim form or get questions answered by going to your services CRSC office. Complete your claim and send it with the appropriate documentation to the address on the form. Make sure to include all of your DD 214s with the application.