The Social Security Administration (SSA) provides expedited processing of disability claims for veterans. If you are a veteran, you can file with a US Department of Veteran Affairs Compensation rating of 100% Permanent & Total (P&T).
Military Service and Social Security Disability for US Veterans
The SSA has been covering veterans with an inactive duty period or SSDI after retirement benefits. In fact, veterans may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits along with veteran benefits.
Although the SSA allows a US veteran to receive both VA disability payments and the SSDI benefits simultaneously – if a veteran has qualified for VA payments, it doesn't automatically qualify them for SSDI. However, if the claimant had received a 100% permanent and total (P&T) disability rating from the VA, social security can expedite processing of their SSDI benefits application.
Remember, the SSDI payments are purely merit-based unlike the veteran benefits. Veteran benefits consider the fact that you became injured or developed a physical or mental condition 'during' your service. Contrary to that, the SSA requires a veteran to meet the qualifications for work credits depending on their work history, in addition to the medical and non-medical documents. Work credits mean that the veteran had spent a certain period of time in 'covered' employment – meaning jobs or self-employment in which you paid Social Security FICA taxes.
Difference between VA disability payments and SSDI
The compensation rates for veteran benefits are paid on a graduated scale, based on the degree of their disability. This scale uses a ranging from 10% to 100% depending on the severity of their disability. Pensions and other non-service benefits require that the claimant veteran would have had served in a wartime period, possess limited resources and assets, and have a discharge other than 'dishonorable'.
On the other hand, the SSDI benefits require evidence of physical or mental impairment, doctor's statements and work history. One financial evidence required by SSA states, claimants need to be unable to work under substantial gainful activity (SGA), i.e., $1310 per month.
Other than the above requirements, veterans need to have any of the following accounts in order to be able to apply for both VA disability payments and the SSDI benefits:
- -A Premium DS Logon account (used for eBenefits and milConnect), or
- -An Advanced or Premium My HealtheVet account, or
- -A verified ID.me account that could be created on VA.gov
How long does the process take?
The length of time Social Security takes to make a disability decision depends on
several factors, primarily:
-The nature of your disability
- -How quickly we get medical
evidence from your doctor or
- -other medical sources
Whether it's necessary to send you for a medical examination to get evidence to support your claim.
Contact a Disability Attorney
Navigating around the process of both VA disability payments and the SSDI could be both tiresome and complicated. It should not be left to non-professionals as only a small error in the required documentation could end up in rejection of the veteran's benefits application. If you're unsure whether you meet the criteria, you can seek legal help from our expert disability attorneys.