Did you know if you’re a veteran you may be qualified to receive both Social Security and VA disability benefits at the same time? It’s true! Although the Social Security Administration (SSA) and Veterans Association (VA) typically work independently of one another, so long as you’re a veteran, unable to work, and able to meet the outlined criteria for both benefits programs, you’re good to go!
What’s The Difference Between The Two?
- The SSA is responsible for offering disability benefits to all disabled workers who are unable to maintain employment as a result of documented medical conditions or terminal illnesses.
- The VA is responsible for offering disability benefits exclusively to military service members who are disabled as a direct result of their active duty military service.
How Is Eligibility Determined?
- The SSA will investigate a person’s entire medical history, and combines all of their medical issues together to determine if they qualify for disability benefits. This includes any and all medical problems suffered before, during, or after any military service.
- Contrarily, the VA will only acknowledge injures or disabilities sustained during the course of a person’s active duty military service. Any conditions or illnesses suffered before or after service cannot be counted toward VA benefits.
How Is Disability Determined?
- In order to obtain SSA benefits, you must be able prove that you’re completely disabled. You will have to verify you’re not able to work at all for at least one whole year, or that you suffer from a terminal illness.
- In order to obtain VA benefits, you must first be investigated and given a “disability rating.” This number, between 0 and 100, determines how disabled you are, with 0 meaning not at all and 100 meaning totally disabled. Your disability rating determines how much in benefits you qualify for. The higher your rating, the more assistance you’ll receive.
- No matter which type of benefits you’re pursuing, you will need to offer up undeniable medical evidence of your disability. This can be done easily by providing official medical records and forms documenting your long-term health.
- If you already receive VA benefits and your disability rating is 70% or higher, you will have a much easier time applying for SSA benefits. On the other hand, if your disability rating is below 70%, you will have to provide additional evidence to prove your condition has worsened enough over the years to qualify you for SSA benefits.
- As a veteran, you may qualify for expedited processing thanks to the Wounded Warriors program. Speak with your attorney to learn if you qualify for this offer.
For more information regarding how you can apply for simultaneous SSA and VA benefits, we encourage you to reach out to our highly qualified attorneys at Esper Aiello Law Group, today. Call us, today, at 313.964.4900 or fill out the form in the sidebar or on our contact page, and learn more about how we can help you.