What You Need To Know About The Vocational Rehab (VR&E) Program

Posted in Uncategorized on January 3, 2017
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The Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E) Program, also referred to as the Chapter 31 program, helps veterans with service-connected disabilities and/or an employment handicaps prepare for, find, and keep jobs. The program provides services that include job searching assistance, vocational, technical or other workforce What you need to know about Vocational Rehab (VR&E) Programtraining; and can also help veterans locate or purchase required job supplies or equipment.

In order to participate in the VR&E program, veterans must meet eligibility and entitlement requirements. The VA generally allows a veteran a 12-year grace period in which VR&E benefits may be used. The start of the 12-year period is defined by the latter of the following dates: date of separation from active military, or date the veteran was first notified of a service-related disability rating.

To determine a veterans entitlement, the degree of service-connected disability or employment handicap must first be established. If a veteran has a 20% service-connected disability then they are entitled to services. If the disability is only 10%, then there must be a serious employment handicap to be eligible for benefits. The percentage of disability is assessed by a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC) and a comprehensive evaluative assessment. The assessment includes general aptitude, interest and abilities questions; but also determines whether a veteran’s state of disability is employment prohibitive. The assessment is also used to help the VRC determine the right VR&E program track and help create an appropriate employment plan.

How to Apply

Eligible Veterans may apply for either Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment benefits or for Education/Career Counseling online through the VA eBenefits website. Follow these steps:

  • Log in to your eBenefits account
  • Select "Additional Benefits" from the dashboard
  • Select "Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Program" - be sure to read the program information and to update your contact information - and apply for either the "Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Program" or "Education/Career Counseling"
  • If it is determined that you are eligible, you will be invited to attend an orientation session, in-person, at the nearest VA Regional Office
  • Servicemembers who have a disability that began or became worse during active duty and who have not yet received a service-connected disability (SCD) rating do not need to wait to apply. Check out VA Form 28-0588 for further instructions.

What you need to know about Vocational Rehab (VR&E) Program

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