Military service is one of the most selfless acts a person can do in their lifetime. Although these sacrifices are for the sake of the country, the valiant efforts made by service members often result in long-term injuries that can make finding work or maintaining a job difficult. Social Security benefits, specifically disability payments, are essential for helping veterans acquire a steady income when facing duty-related problems. Speeding up the process of collecting these benefits is not only lifesaving, but it can also help veterans struggling to support themselves regain a crucial sense of stability through monetary support.
Do Veterans Get More Social Security Payments for Their Service?
Since 1957, additional Social Security salary credits may have been added to a person’s earnings record if they received compensation for military service while on active duty and in training. Since 1988, Social Security has provided coverage for inactive duty work performed while serving in the military reserves, such as drills occurring on the weekend. Their Social Security earnings record may include special additional earnings for active-duty years between 1957 and 2001. When they go to apply for Social Security benefits, their unique extra earnings are added to their earnings record if they were in the military between the years 1957 through 1967. The additional compensation is already on a veteran’s record if active-duty service began after 1967.
What Are the Work Requirements for Disability Benefits?
As most veterans are already aware, they must have suffered their injury while on active duty to be eligible for VA disability benefits. In contrast, someone could be eligible for SSDI for a disease that manifested itself at any time. To be eligible for SSDI, one must, however, have contributed enough to Social Security taxes throughout their adult life. Depending on their age, they may need to earn a different amount of taxable income to be eligible, but the vast majority of veterans will be eligible if they apply for SSDI as soon as they complete their service.
How Long Does the Claims Process Take?
For most claims, veterans can urge VA to handle their claim more quickly by submitting a Priority Processing Request using VA Form 20-10207. For all veterans submitting a claim, filing with the VA is essential, especially when compiling medical evidence to support any new diagnoses or injuries that could be used to prove a disability. Veterans who meet one of the following requirements must submit documentation, if it is not already on file, to be considered eligible:
- Extremely struggling financially
- Serious illnesses
- Lou Gehrig’s disease, also referred to as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
- During military operations, getting very badly ill or seriously injured led to a discharge from service
- Being 85 years or older
- Formerly imprisoned during a war
- A recipient of the Purple Heart or the Medal of Honor
Although there is no way to guarantee that the process will be expedited, submitting these forms increases the likelihood of having the claim reviewed by the VA, which in turn, helps speed up the delivery of these benefits. Creating a strong case that can accurately demonstrate a valid disability claim is necessary for claiming any benefits and ensuring that any necessary and crucial documents in that petition are vital to producing a strong case.
How Do VA Benefits Change Social Security Payments?
The additional income from VA benefits will have an impact on the cash benefit amount because SSI is a needs-based program. VA benefits are categorized by the SSA as “unearned income” because they are not derived from paid employment. As a result, following a $20 general exclusion, it will be subtracted dollar for dollar from the federal SSI payout amount. This exclusion, which exempts the first $20 of earned or unearned income from being deducted from recipients’ SSI payments, is available to all SSI beneficiaries.
Q: How Can I Make my VA Disability Claim Faster?
A: Veterans can urge the VA to handle their claims more quickly by submitting a Priority Processing Request using VA Form 20-10207. Veterans must provide proof, if not already on file, confirming they meet various requirements, ranging from honorary titles and awards to significant medical diagnoses like cancer or ALS, to be eligible.
Q: How Long Does Social Security Disability Take for Veterans?
A: Veterans typically get approvals in 3 to 6 months. The lengthy wait period for SSDI benefits might not apply to some disabled veterans. They might be eligible for accelerated claims processing if they become disabled while actively serving the military any time after October 1, 2001. This implies that they could start earning monthly payments within a few weeks.
Q: Do Veterans Get SSDI Faster?
A: Approvals for veterans often take between three and six months. Some applicants can be exempt from the long waiting time for SSDI benefits if they are disabled veterans. Any time after October 1, 2001, if one becomes disabled while actively serving in the military, one can be qualified for faster claims processing. This suggests that within a few weeks, you might begin receiving monthly payments.
Q: How Long Does It Take a 100% Disabled Veteran to Get SSDI?
A: Veterans who have a 10% disability rating are eligible for VA benefits. This is not the case for SSDI applicants; to qualify for payments from the Social Security Administration, they must demonstrate that they are “totally handicapped.” Veterans who have a disability rating of 70% or higher are typically eligible. The SSA will speed up the processing of these claims if the applicant’s disability rating is 100% P&T (permanent and total).
Starting The Disability Claims Process for Veterans
Submitting a disability claim is the first step towards getting rightly-deserved benefits for past military service. When active-duty military service leads to injuries or when those with previous military service end up physically disabled, filing a claim for disability benefits can help these veterans live out their lives comfortably. Seeking legal help with crafting a claim is necessary for making a strong case, and at Gade & Parekh, LLP, we can help start that process. For more information, visit our website and contact us today.