Can PVA help me find a job or explore educational opportunities?
Paralyzed Veterans of America’s employment program, PAVE, provides FREE employment support and vocational counseling assistance to ALL transitioning service members, veterans, military spouses, and caregivers.
Government Relations and Advocacy
What is the difference between Paralyzed Veterans of America and Disabled American Veterans?
Paralyzed Veterans of America and Disabled American Veterans work closely together on issues of mutual concern. However, PVA is focused solely on the needs of veterans with catastrophic disabilities and paralyzed veterans. DAV’s members have a variety of abilities and they primarily focus on veterans’ benefits and health care. PVA’s programs reflect a more expansive view of the needs of our members to include not only veterans’ benefits and health care, but also their right to access their communities as people with disabilities. We are the leader in the veterans’ community for disability civil rights, including the protection of the Americans with Disabilities Act for all people with disabilities.
Do Paralyzed Veterans of America’s programs and services overlap or duplicate government programs?
No. In fact, the programs offered by Paralyzed Veterans of America complement those offered by government programs. PVA offers critical assistance to and oversight of benefits and services provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs. PVA also helps veterans with catastrophic disabilities who encounter barriers in their communities by empowering them to advocate for their removal. In a time when government services are underfunded, PVA often fills an important void. Without our assistance, many paralyzed veterans would not have proper access to the benefits, services, and rights that they have earned.
I am a veteran in need of legal services. Can you help me?
Yes. Paralyzed Veterans of America’s legal services department can help with your claims for benefits administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Their attorneys have litigated hundreds of VA benefits cases on behalf of our members and other veterans to ensure that they receive all the VA benefits they have earned. If your claim for VA benefits has been turned down and your appeal to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals has been denied as well, PVA can file a federal lawsuit on your behalf with the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. In certain cases, we may also appeal an adverse decision from the Veterans’ Court to other federal appellate courts.
PVA’s Appellate Services legal staff also provides appellate representation for VA benefits claims that have been initially denied by a VA Regional Office before the VA’s Board of Veterans’ Appeals. Appellate Services staff will work directly with you (or a member of your family) and your local National Service Officer to gather evidence and present a written and/or oral argument before the Board of Veterans’ Appeals.
Paralyzed Veterans of America will also, in certain cases, provide free legal representation to veterans and active duty service members at hearings before military Physical Evaluation Boards, Boards of Correction for Military Records, and Discharge Review Boards.
While PVA does not provide direct legal representation in other kinds of cases, such as domestic relations matters, bankruptcies, criminal misconduct, negligence, and other civil matters, we may be able to provide you with other sources of pro bono (free) or discounted legal services.
Who can become a PVA member?
Membership is free and open to anyone who:
- Is a citizen of the United States
- Is a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces whose discharge was other than dishonorable
- Has suffered a spinal cord injury as a result of trauma or disease which resulted in paralysis of more than one limb. The injury or disease does not need to be service-connected and can have occurred following a veteran’s discharge or retirement from military service.
Sports and Recreation
Where are New England PVA sports and recreation events held?
New England PVA provides a variety of adaptive sports and recreation opportunities during each calendar year. Our events take place throughout the New England – Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont. For more information on our current event schedule, please visit our events calendar page.
Are individual athlete grants available for sports and recreation events?
The Member Individual Allotment (IA) Program’s purpose is to improve the quality of life of New England PVA’s members by assisting in the expansion of both the quality and quantity of opportunities in sports, recreation, events and entertainment, especially those activities which enhance lifetime health and fitness, both physical and mental.
I’d like to volunteer with New England PVA sports and recreation. How can I get involved?
New England PVA volunteers do invaluable work that makes a real difference to veterans and their communities. Volunteering can be a life-changing experience for both you and the paralyzed veterans.
What is disability compensation and what are the qualifications for this benefit?
Disability compensation is a tax-free financial benefit paid to veterans who are considered at least 10 percent disabled due to an injury or disease that occurred or became worse during active military service. This is true even if the disability arises after active service is over. The disability can be a physical condition, such as spinal cord injury, or a mental health issue, such as post-traumatic stress disorder.
To learn more about your eligibility for disability benefits, call the Veterans Benefits Helpline at 1-866-734-0857 send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or speak with your New England region PVA National Service Officer in your area.
What determines the amount of disability compensation I can receive?
The benefit amount ranges from 10 percent to 100 percent, depending on the veteran’s disability rating. (“Disability Rating” refers to the level of impairment a veteran is living with.) Special Monthly Compensation may also be provided when the level of impairment exceeds 100 percent. Disability compensation may be affected if a veteran receives military retirement pay, disability severance pay, or separation incentive payments. Learn more about veteran benefits from one of our New England region National Service Officers.
Who qualifies for the Department of Veterans Affairs’ pension benefit?
The VA provides tax-free, supplemental income to low-income wartime veterans through the Veterans Pension benefit. To qualify, a veteran must have at least 90 days of active duty service, with at least one day during a wartime period.
Veterans entering active duty service after Sept. 7, 1980, generally must have served at least 24 months or the full period for which they were ordered to active duty (with some exceptions) with at least one day during a wartime period.
The pension benefit also requires that veterans be:
- Age 65 or older
- Totally and permanently disabled
- A patient in a nursing home receiving skilled nursing care
- Receiving Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income
In addition, the veteran’s yearly income must be less than the amount set by Congress.