HomeVA ProstheticsVA Handbook 1173.15 - Clothing Allowance BenefitAppendix A - Determining Entitlement

15.11. Appendix A - Determining Entitlement

   a. One Clothing Allowance. A clothing allowance is approved for certain Veterans who wear or use a prescribed prosthetic, orthopedic appliance, and/or skin medication and who otherwise meet the criteria in paragraph 6 of this Handbook. 

For example: A Veteran is prescribed and uses a right knee brace for his or her service-connected condition. The right knee brace has rigid hinges which tears the Veterans pants. This Veteran qualifies for one clothing allowance payment.

   b. More Than One Clothing Allowance. Multiple clothing allowances are approved if:

   (1) A Veteran uses multiple qualifying prostheses, orthopedic appliances, and skin medications each satisfy the requirements in paragraph 6 of this Handbook; each approved prostheses, orthopedic appliance and skin medication impacts a distinct outergarment, i.e., upper outergarment (shirt/blouse) and lower outergarment (pants/skirt). 

Example: Veteran is a service-connected paraplegic who uses a specialized wheelchair with adaptations for posturing and positioning. The Veteran also applies a prescribed skin cream known to stain clothing. Because the wheelchair wears and frequently tears the shirt, and the skin medication stains the shirt, the Veteran qualifies for two clothing allowance payments. 

   (2) The qualifying prostheses, orthopedic appliances and skin medications each satisfy the requirements in paragraph 6 of this Handbook, and together tend to tear or wear or irreparably damage an outergarment, requiring replacement at a faster rate than if the outergarment is affected by a single qualifying prosthetic, orthopedic appliance or skin medication. 

Example: Veteran wears a prescribed rigid elbow brace for his or her service connected condition, which satisfies requirements in paragraph 6 of this Handbook.  The Veteran also uses a prescribed skin cream on the same arm that causes the shirt to fade at an increased rate. The Veteran qualifies for two clothing allowances payments, as both the rigid elbow brace and cream meet the requirements of paragraph 6 of this Handbook and together cause an increased rate of damage to a distinct outergarment shirt/blouse). 

Example: Veteran with paralysis due to a service-connected condition uses a specialized wheelchair adapted for sliding transfers that tears his or her upper and lower outergarments (shirts and pants). The Veteran also uses a prescribed skin cream and rigid AFO impacting his or her lower outergarments (pants) to wear out at a faster rate.  The Veteran qualifies for three clothing allowance payments.

Example: Veteran is prescribed upper and lower prostheses for upper and lower amputations. A knee brace for the opposite leg of the lower prostheses is prescribed for another service-connected condition. The Veteran also is prescribed skin cream for irritation on the opposite arm of the upper prostheses that causes the Veterans article of clothing (shirt/blouse) to fade. The Veteran qualifies for four clothing allowance payments.

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