VA benefits may be considered as income in awarding child or spousal support. As stated in Rose vs. Rose (1987), the Supreme Court views VA disability benefits as not solely for the disabled veteran, but as well as to “provide reasonable and adequate compensation for disabled veterans and their families,” especially that the veteran’s only source of satisfying his support obligations is through the VA disability pay.


Rose vs. Rose (1987)

“(d) Provisions of the Child Support Enforcement Act, which provide that moneys payable by the Government to any individual are subject to child support enforcement proceedings (42 U.S.C. § 659(a)), but which specifically exclude VA disability benefits, do not establish a congressional intent to exempt such benefits from legal process. Section 659(a) was intended to create a limited waiver of sovereign immunity so that state courts could issue valid orders directed against Government agencies attaching funds in their possession. Thus, although veterans’ disability benefits may be exempt from attachment while in the VA’s hands, once they are delivered to the veteran, a state court can require that they be used to satisfy a child support order. Pp. 481 U. S. 634-635.”

38 USC § 1115 also provides for additional compensation for dependents of veterans entitled to disability pay:

“(1) If and while rated totally disabled and—

(A) has a spouse but no child, $150;

(B) has a spouse and one or more children, $259 plus $75 for each child in excess of one;

(C) has no spouse but one or more children, $101 plus $75 for each child in excess of one;

(D) has a parent dependent upon such veteran for support, then, in addition to the above amounts, $120 for each parent so dependent;

(E) notwithstanding the other provisions of this paragraph, the monthly payable amount on account of a spouse who is

(i) a patient in a nursing home or

(ii) blind, or so nearly blind or significantly disabled as to need or require the regular aid and attendance of another person, shall be $286 for a totally disabled veteran and proportionate amounts for partially disabled veterans in accordance with paragraph (2) of this section; and

(F) notwithstanding the other provisions of this paragraph, the monthly amount payable on account of each child who has attained the age of eighteen years and who is pursuing a course of instruction at an approved educational institution shall be $240 for a totally disabled veteran and proportionate amounts for partially disabled veterans in accordance with paragraph (2) of this section.

(2) If and while rated partially disabled, but not less than 30 percent, in an amount having the same ratio to the amount specified in paragraph (1) of this section as the degree of disability bears to total disability. The amounts payable under this paragraph, if not a multiple of $1, shall be rounded down to the nearest dollar.”