02 Jul Automobile and Special Adaptive Equipment Grants
For veterans and military service members with a disability, having access to an automobile is often very important. Unfortunately, due to the nature of some disabilities, vehicles may require modifications in order to be functional to a disabled individual. These modifications can quite often cost significant amounts of money. The good news is that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides grants for disabled veterans and military service members to help with the cost of purchasing an automobile or for completing necessary modifications.
Purchasing a Vehicle
The VA provides a grant for veterans or service members to purchase an automobile (or other conveyance) to accommodate certain disabilities that resulted from an injury or disease incurred or aggravated during active military service. The grant, which may be up to an amount of $20,114.34, is paid directly to the seller of the automobile. Unfortunately, this grant is only available to be paid one time during a veteran or service member’s life.
In order to qualify, the individual must be an active duty service member or a veteran with one of the following:
- Loss, or permanent loss of use, of one or both feet
- Loss, or permanent loss of use, of one or both hands
- Permanent impairment of vision in both eyes to a certain degree
- Severe burn injury
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
The vision impairment involves either central visual acuity of less than 20/20 in the better eye with corrective lenses or a serious contraction of the peripheral field such that the widest diameter of visual field subtends an angular distance no greater than 20 degrees in the better eye. Severe burn injuries are considered deep partial thickness or full thickness burns that result in scar formation that causes contractures, limits motion of one or more extremities or the trunk, and prevents the ability to operate a vehicle.
The application for a grant to purchase a vehicle can be found at VA Form 21-4501.
Adapting a Vehicle
Alternatively, a veteran or service member may not need help in purchasing a vehicle, but he or she may require financial assistance in modifying a vehicle to make it suitable for use. If the veteran or service member is only applying for a grant in order to purchase equipment or have it installed, then he or she should fill out VA Form 10-1394.
Those veterans or service members who are qualified for the automobile grant due to injuries sustained during active military service can receive modifications to their vehicles. These modifications to automobiles include, and are not limited to:
- Power steering
- Power windows
- Power seats
- Special equipment required to assist the eligible person in getting into and out of the vehicle
Unlike the grant for the purchase of a vehicle, the adaptive equipment grant may be paid either to the veteran (the purchaser) or the seller. Additionally, this grant can be paid more than once to a veteran or service member.
Helping our Veterans
The sacrifice our military veterans and service members endure often results in serious injury. When this happens, these individuals are frequently entitled to disability benefits. At the Klok Law Firm LLC, we are proud to use our knowledge and experience in assisting veterans and service members pursue these crucial benefits. If you would like more information, contact us today.