Veterans and their caregivers who are traveling to and from approved health care appointments may be eligible for reimbursement of their mileage and other travel expenses through VA if they meet certain requirements. According to VA, general reimbursement covers regular transportation, such as by car, plane, train, bus, taxi, or light rail. Claims can be made online through the Beneficiary Travel Self Service System (BTSSS). VA offers easy instructions for creating your creating a login, filling out your profile, and entering your first claim on its website.
This benefit in most cases is meant to veterans who may have difficulty attending appointments, and should further encourage those with serious conditions or financial hardship to continue to seek healthcare and monitor their condition. It goes without saying that if you are eligible for these benefits, you should most certainly pursue your claim.
Eligibility for Travel Pay Reimbursements
In order to claim these benefits, VA insists that you meet certain conditional, situational, or financial requirements. Compared to requirements set up to receive other benefits, these are fairly straightforward, and are outlined by VA as follows:
- You must be a veteran, and
- One of the following must be true:
- You have a VA disability rating of 30% or higher, or
- You’re traveling for treatment of a service-connected condition, even if your VA disability rating is less than 30%, or
- You receive a VA pension, or
- You have an income that’s below the maximum annual VA pension rate, or
- You can’t afford to pay for your travel, as defined by our guidelines, or
- You’re traveling for one of these reasons: A scheduled VA claim exam (also called a compensation and pension, or C&P, exam), to get a service dog, or for VA-approved transplant care.
Reimbursements for travel, lodging, and meals may also be eligible to non-veterans acting in a caregiver role. Certain circumstances may require that a caregiver is present for the veteran’s healthcare, and as such, VA extends this benefit to them as long as one of the following conditions are met:
- The person is your family caregiver under the National Caregiver Program traveling to receive caregiver training or to support your care, or
- The person is your medically required attendant traveling with you to support your care, or
- The person is your transplant care donor or support person.
VA will also “pay for care for an allied beneficiary when the appropriate foreign government agency has authorized their care, or for the beneficiary of another federal agency when that agency has approved their care.”
Get Help With Your Claim
Your health care should be your top priority, so VA travel reimbursements are not benefits you want to miss out on. If you are struggling to file a claim for reimbursement or need help setting up an appeal, whether for travel benefits or any other disability benefits, VA Disability Group is here to help. Give us a call at 844-VET-LAWS or contact us online to ensure that your claim is a strong as it can be and will get you the benefits you deserve.