To establish entitlement to compensation as if 100 percent disabled based on individual unemployability (IU), a veteran must be unable to secure or retain employment by reason of service-connected (SC) disability. The veteran must be unemployable in fact by reason of SC disability andeither
Decide whether the veteran meets the requirements for a schedular 100-percent evaluation before considering the issue of IU.
Note: If a 100 percent SC evaluation is awarded, any pending claim for a total disability evaluation based on IU is moot.
The term unemployability is not synonymous with the terms unemployed and unemployable for the purpose of determining entitlement to increased compensation. A veteran may be unemployed or unemployable for a variety of reasons.
A determination as to entitlement to a total evaluation based on unemployability is appropriate only when a veteran’s unemployability is a result of SC disabilities.
Substantially gainful employment is defined as employment at which non-disabled individuals earn their livelihood with earnings comparable to the particular occupation in the community where the veteran resides.