Can I get Social Security Disability Benefits and Veterans Disability Benefits?
Many clients ask if they can receive both Social Security disability and Veterans disability benefits at the same time. Yes, they may receive both Social Security benefits and Veterans disability benefits. However, receiving one does not automatically qualify you for the other as the programs are very different in their requirements.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) each have their own separate and distinct disability programs. VA disability compensation benefits are paid to those whose injury or disease is service connected, i.e. injuries that occurred in service, are presumptively related to service, or are aggravated by military service. Social Security disability benefits are paid to those with an inability to engage in substantial gainful activity by reason of a mental or physical impairment that is expected to result in death or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 12 months. A Claimant must file applications for Social Security and VA benefits separately and the time frames vary for each program.
While SSA is required to consider a VA disability determination in its own decision making process, it is not bound by a VA decision and does not have to award benefits because a Claimant is already receiving VA disability. Moreover, the VA allows for benefits to be paid based on partial disability. Benefits are assigned in 10% increments from 10% to 100%. Social Security disability requires a Claimant to be unable to engage in work due to his or her disability. Partial disability is not an option under Social Security disability. Even with the distinctions between the two programs, you may qualify for both Social security disability and VA disability compensation.
For more information on navigating both the Social Security disability and VA disability compensation process, contact an experienced attorney at Gardberg & Kemmerly, P.C. today at 251-343-1111 for a free case evaluation. At Gardberg & Kemmerly, we specialize in both Social Security and VA disability benefits. Gardberg & Kemmerly, P.C. represents Social Security disability claimants in Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, and Louisiana at all levels of the disability process from initial application to appeals to Federal Court.