CRDP is one of two forms of concurrent receipt. CRSC, Combat-Related Special Compensation, is the other form. "Concurrent receipt" is the restoration of Service retired pay that’s docked due to receipt of VA disability compensation. Or in other words, concurrent receipt reimburses you what the VA Waiver removes from your retired pay. You are allowed to accept one form of concurrent receipt or the other but not both.
CRDP is automatic for all 20(+) year retirees with a VA rating of 50% or greater. CRDP is the elimination of the VA Waiver from retired pay. Without CRDP, a person with a VA rating and the associated VA compensation has their Service retired pay docked dollar-for-dollar by the amount of VA compensation they receive. The amount subtracted from retired pay is known as the VA Waiver—you ‘waive’ your retired pay to receive VA compensation. The elimination of the VA Waiver means all taxable retired pay is restored. It also means all retired pay becomes subject to the Former Spouse Protection Act and retired pay can be divided in a divorce.
Why would anyone who qualifies for both programs take CRDP instead of CRSC which is tax-free? Because it is not unusual for the CRSC combat-related rating to be lower than the VA rating. The Service may determine for example that only 30% of the disabilities in your 70% VA rating are combat-related. A 70% CRDP concurrent receipt payment may put more money in your pocket, even with taxes, than a 30% CRSC tax-free payment.
If you receive CRDP, you receive two separate payments. One is your VA compensation and one is your Service retired pay.
The 2004 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) provided a ten-year plan to eliminate the VA Waiver from retired pay for members with VA disability compensation at the 50-100% ratings. All 20-year(+) retirees who had VA disability ratings of 50% or higher had the VA Waiver in their retired pay slowly eliminated over the ten-year period starting January 1, 2004. In 2014, the phase-in of CRDP is complete meaning everyone who qualifies for CRDP will no longer have a VA Waiver in their retired pay. CRDP can be retroactive to the maximum of January 1, 2004 if applicable.
Who is eligible for Concurrent Receipt of Disability Pay (CRDP)?
You must be a 20-year(+) retiree with a VA rated disability of 50% or greater to qualify.
- You must be receiving Service retired pay and VA compensation.
- CRDP payments are being phased in over 10 years, beginning January 1, 2004. As of January 1, 2014, disabled retirees under CRDP will receive full retired pay and full VA compensation.
- The only retirees not eligible for CRDP are those retirees who retired for medical reasons (under chapter 61 of USC 10) with less than 20 years of service.
- Reserve Component members must be receiving retired pay to receive CRDP; after all, CRDP is the restoration of retired pay that is withheld due to the VA Waiver.
Retirees eligible under both CRDP and CRSC criteria have to choose between the two forms of compensation. Recipients have the option each year in December to choose the more advantageous option. The Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) or your pay agent mails you an Open Season letter for you to make the choice.