Special Compensation for Assistance with Activities of Daily Living (SCAADL)

Special Compensation for Assistance with Activities of Daily Living (SCAADL)
was authorized by the Fiscal Year 2010 National Defense Authorization Act. This special monthly compensation is for service members who incur a permanent catastrophic injury or illness. SCAADL helps offset the loss of income by a primary caregiver who provides non-medical care, support, and assistance for the service member.

What steps should I take to apply?

Contact a member of your recovery team (to include the primary care manager, Nurse Case Manager, Recovery Care Coordinator, Non-Medical Case Manager, AW2 Advocate, or unit leadership) for the SCAADL application and guidance.

Your DOD or VA physician will complete a DD Form 2948. If your attending physician is not affiliated with DOD or VA, arrangements can be made to have a DOD or VA physician review your case and complete the certification. Your application (DD Form 2948) will be forwarded, via your chain of command, to the Regional Medical Command (RMC), for processing and payment.

Below you will find the documents needed to apply for SCAADL:

How are amounts determined?

SCAADL payment amounts are based upon the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics wage rate for home health aides and are adjusted by:

  • The geographic area of residence/recovery
  • A three-tier system based on the complexity of care, as determined by a DOD or VA physician, and uses a clinical evaluation and score. The member is rated as follows:

High Tier: Service member who scores 21 or higher will be presumed to need a full- time caregiver who provides 40 hours of personal care services per week.

Medium Tier: Service member who scores 13-20 will be presumed to require 25 hours per week of caregiver assistance.

Low Tier: Service member who scores 1-12 will be presumed to require 10 hours of caregiver assistance per week.

How long can a service member receive SCAADL?

SCAADL is paid to a service member until he/she is separated from the service or until they no longer require assistance with activities of daily living. SCAADL will end the earliest of:

  • 90 days after separation from the service
  • Receipt of compensation under the VA program
  • Service member's recovery; or
  • Last day of the month during which the service member dies

If the service member is transitioning out of the military, notify the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) of impending transition to ensure application procedures of the VA's monthly caregiver stipend are initiated prior to separation from service.

Is SCAADL automatic?

No, the service member or guardian must apply, and a DOD or VA physician certifies eligibility. A service member should contact a member of his or her recovery team (to include the Primary Care Manager, Nurse Case Manager, Recovery Care Coordinator, Non- Medical Case Manager, or unit leadership) for the SCAADL application form and guidance.

What if I disagree with my SCAADL determination?

There is a section on the DD Form 2948 that provides an opportunity to indicate you wish to appeal. Appeals must be submitted to the Commanding General, Warrior Care and Transition. All medical reviews and opinions must be included. After the command surgeon conducts a thorough review and develops a medical advisory opinion; the commanding commander will review the package and determine SCAADL entitlement.

Who receives the SCAADL payment?

SCAADL is paid directly to the service member, not the service member's designated caregiver. It is up to the service member to ensure the compensation flows accordingly.

Is SCAADL tax-exempt?

No, SCAADL is taxable compensation.

Are there any instances where my SCAADL could change?

Yes, SCAADL amounts are based on geographic location AND care needs. Amounts may change if the service member moves or his/her care needs change.

Also, SCAADL requires recertification every 180 days (or when medical or geographic conditions change) to ensure payment accuracy.

What if my status changes from outpatient to inpatient?

As long as the service member is in outpatient status for the majority of the month (more than 15 days) he / she will still be eligible for SCAADL.

Can I designate a military member as my primary caregiver?

No, a military member cannot be designated as a primary caregiver for purposes of SCAADL.

I'm transitioning out of the service. Will I still receive SCAADL as a Veteran?

While SCAADL is intended for service members, you may receive it up to 90 days after separation from the service. While out-processing, you need to complete the application for the VA Caregiver Stipend.

The service member should work with their recovery team to begin the transition process. The service member may realize a change in compensation when transitioning to VA Caregiver Stipend.

I was authorized a Non-Medical Attendant (NMA). Does that mean I will automatically qualify for SCAADL?

No, service members who have been authorized an NMA should not assume entitlement to SCAADL. NMAs are authorized by physicians and designated by the service member. However, there is no stringent clinical review applied to this designation as there is with SCAADL.