The VA clothing allowance is a little-known benefit for certain veterans with service-connected disabilities. This benefit only applies to veterans with a service-connected disability who require the use of a prosthetic, orthopedic device, or skin medication that cause irreparable damage to clothing, and because of this damage, requires more frequent replacement. Here is the quote from the application form, VA Form 10-8678 (pdf):
Veterans who wear or use a qualifying prescribed prosthetic or orthopedic appliance and/or prescription medication for a service-connected disability or skin condition may be eligible for an annual clothing allowance. To be eligible, the appliance must wear or tear clothing, or medication must irreparably damage the veteran’s outer-garments.
Disabled Veteran Clothing Allowance
Clothing Allowance Benefit: The VA Clothing Allowance is for eligible veterans with a service-connected disability and is worth $968.52 in 2023. The benefit is designed to be used to replace clothing that is worn or torn by the continued use of prosthetic or orthopedic devices or because of required skin medications. It is possible to receive two clothing allowance benefits if you have more than one qualifying condition. For example, veterans with multiple prosthetic devices or skin conditions may be eligible to receive two allowances per year if they qualify, provided the conditions damage distinct clothing items. Multiple awards are made on a case-by-case basis.
Eligibility: The first requirement is to have a service-connected disability that requires the use of a prosthetic or orthopedic device, or the use of skin cremes that irreparably damage the outer garments. According to the VA, “Irreparable damages do not include stains that are removable through regular laundering or dry cleaning.”
Common examples include the wearing of a prosthetic or orthopedic device, artificial limb, rigid brace, back brace, the use of a wheelchair, or the required application of skin cremes or other medications which may damage clothing.
How to Apply: You can apply for this benefit at your VA hospital or clinic or by mailing in the completed application form. Submit the form to the Prosthetic and Sensory Aids Service (PSAS) at the VA Medical Center closest to you. This is an annual allowance that must be renewed each year. The form must be submitted no later than August 1st of each year.
Before you apply, you should gather all your relevant paperwork and supporting information to help fill out the application form. Printing the form and reviewing it before you apply will help you gather all applicable information.
When filling out the form you will need to list the clothing item that becomes damaged by your prosthetic, medical device or skin cream, the related disability, when it was issued, the VA Facility that issued it, and how it impacts your life.
As with all forms you submit to the VA you will be required to sign and certify the information is accurate.
If this is your first time submitting the application, it is recommended you visit the VA center closest to you for assistance with the application.
Photo credit: Sergeant Ian Forsyth RLC
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Ed Lowe says
according to reg’s it should be between 9-1 and 10-31 every year all though i also get mine in Aug usually. have not rec’d mine this year either. spoke to prosthetics n told reason is due to backlog. has anyone rec’d their’s?
SGT JJohnson says
nope, still waiting
daniel n missi says
when does my clothing allowance get put into my savings thought it was august 15 every year
Douglas McCants says
I have been receiving clothing allowance already. When are checks due to come available in my account
MR. WW says
Hello fellow vets. The clothing allowances are scheduled to be sent out by your last name. My neighbor received his check on August 20th his last name begins with (L). My last name begins with (W) and last year my check came on the 27th, of August. I hope this helps.
In the old days, (before the internet), getting information from the VA on Veteran services available, was a hit-or-miss adventure, depending on who at the VA you spoke to. As such, the best source was (than) another Veteran. I can’t tell you, how many times a Veteran informed me of an unadvertised benefit I was eligible for, and later applied and received.
Now-a-days with the internet, a lot of that unadvertised information, is now available on the web. Yes it may take some time searching, but most is available.
The questions in this section regarding Clothing Allowance and Wheelchairs, is an example, and one I too asked the prosthetics department when my claim that included the use of a wheelchair was denied. Unfortunately, they didn’t have an answer (so they said), but the internet did. Next year, I will incorporate that knowledge when submitting my Clothing Allowance, Form 10-8678. (“Manual wheelchair without clothing guards”).
Additionally, my Clothing Allowance Form 10-8678 included skin medications that stained clothing, of which was denied. So what medications do stain clothing, I asked myself?
For additional details or specifics to regulations, see below links.
Although comments from Veterans illustrate their experience with the VA, their situation, disability(s) and circumstances vary, and should only be considered a guideline, not gospel. For accuracy, its always best to validate via VA Code and Regulations.
(Site Location) U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
(Rehabilitation and Prosthetic Services)
In search box (upper right) enter:
[“] VHA HANDBOOK 1173.15, Clothing Allowance Benefit [“] (PDF)
(Note: Transmittal Sheet: May 14, 2015, includes APPENDIX A & B)
8. PROSTHETICS, ORTHOPEDIC APPLIANCES AND SKIN MEDICATIONS:
[a.] Examples of items that tend to tear and wear clothing include:
” […] manual wheelchairs without clothing guards, specialized wheelchairs with sliding board/sliding transfer functionalities, and wheelchairs with positioning and posturing adaptations, […] ”
[b.] Examples of items that do not tend to tear and wear clothing include:
” […] non-specialized wheelchairs (sedentary/sitting purposes), […] ”
[“] LIST OF MEDICATIONS THAT MAY STAIN OR DAMAGE CLOTHING [“] (PDF)
*Please note this list is to be used as a guide as there are multiple manufacturers, dosage forms, and excipients.
[Semper Fi – 12/2018]
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