Veteran Readiness and Employment (formerly called Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment) is a program for veterans with a service-connected disability to access job training, employment accommodations, resume development, and job-seeking skills coaching. In some cases, family members may also qualify for certain benefits of this program, which is also known as Chapter 31 or VR&E.
Your service-related disability may make it difficult for you to return to the workforce after your deployment. VR&E is designed to help through job training, career counseling, and assistance in securing appropriate accommodations from potential employers. These benefits are available to eligible service members who have left the service or who are still on active duty.
What Benefits Does VR&E Include?
Exactly what VR&E services will be available and appropriate for your specific situation will depend on your circumstances, but some of the benefits available include:
- A thorough evaluation to determine your employment-related abilities, skills, and interests
- Employment-focused professional or vocational counseling and rehabilitation planning
- Job training, resume development, and other supports to prepare you for post-military employment
- Job seeking and job retention assistance, including the use of special employer incentives and job accommodations
- On-the-job training (OJT), apprenticeships, and non-paid work experiences
- Post-secondary education and training at a college, vocational, technical, or business school
- Rehabilitation services to support employment, including case management, counseling, and medical referrals
- Independent living services to help you maintain as much independence as possible
Will Accessing Veteran Readiness and Employment Reduce My Other Veterans Education Benefits?
Using VR&E benefits won’t reduce the amount of your entitlement to other VA education benefits, like the Post-9/11 GI Bill or the Montgomery GI Bill. However, using other VA education program benefits before accessing VR&E benefits may reduce your remaining VR&E entitlement equal to the amount of time used under the other VA education program.
In some cases, however, if you already used other VA education benefits and are subsequently deemed eligible for VR&E, the VA may retroactively approve your previous months of entitlement and return them to whatever other VA education program you had previously participated in. This is called “retroactive induction,” and it can be greatly beneficial to certain veterans seeking education or job training.
Education and training are vital to the process of transitioning from a career in the military to civilian employment. The Veteran Readiness and Employment program can provide veterans with the necessary tools to successfully re-enter the civilian workforce.
Am I Eligible for VR&E Benefits?
Both veterans and active-duty service members may be eligible for Veteran Readiness and Employment benefits. The requirements are:
- You didn’t receive a dishonorable discharge, and
- You have a service-connected disability rating of at least 10% from the VA
Also, vets who were discharged from active duty before January 1, 2013, have a basic period of eligibility that ends 12 years from one of these dates, whichever comes later:
- The date you received notice of your date of separation from active duty, or
- The date you received your first VA service-connected disability rating
If a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor finds that you have a serious employment handicap (SEH), your period of eligibility may be extended
Veterans who were discharged from active duty on or after January 1, 2013, however, have no basic period of eligibility. There’s no time limit on eligibility for these veterans.
Active Duty Service Members:
- You have a 20% or higher pre-discharge disability rating (memorandum rating) and will soon leave the military, OR
- You’re waiting to be discharged because of a severe illness or injury that occurred while you were on active duty
Why Do I Need a Lawyer to Access VA Benefits?
The United States Department of Veterans Affairs is a large, complex agency of the federal government. Accessing any veterans benefits through the VA is likely to be frustrating and time-consuming, laden with red tape and bureaucracy. You served your country, protecting the freedoms and way of life that all Americans enjoy. Now let a fellow veteran and experienced veterans benefits lawyer serve you.
Attorney Benjamin Krause served in the United States Air Force in Special Operations Command and Air Mobility Command. His own battles with the VA inspired him to attend law school and help veterans like you get the benefits your service and patriotism have earned. Mr. Krause understands the VA and the ways it can get in the way of your benefits. In fact, he exposed a scandal affecting nearly 25,000 veterans in which the VA was using unqualified doctors to assess residuals of traumatic brain injury (TBI). As a result of this mishandling of veterans’ health care, the VA failed to pay veterans thousands in disability compensation they should have received. Later, Mr. Krause exposed the massive failure of the VA to pay for non-VA emergency room visits. As a result of Mr. Krause’s investigation and reporting, IG investigations and congressional oversight hearings were initiated in both scandals.
Attorney Benjamin Krause has devoted his professional life to making things easier for veterans by assisting them in getting the benefits that they were promised by the United States. Mr. Krause not only works as an attorney for his clients but also serves as an advocate for all veterans.
You fought for us. Now let us fight for you.
Call Krause Law, PLLC at (612) 888-9567 to speak with Attorney and US Air Force veteran Benjamin Krause. He understands what it is to serve, and he knows how to help veterans get the benefits they are owed.