The Social Security Administration (SSA) is making veterans first priority for processing disability claims. If you are a veteran suffering from a disability qualifying with a compensation rating of 100% Permanent and Total (P&T), the SSA may expedite your claim.
This new expedited benefit application process started on March 17, 2014. This expedited processing is extended to all disabled military service members who became disabled on or after October 1, 2001.
Qualifying for Social Security Disability as a Veteran
It is important to note that benefits from Social Security are different from Veterans Affairs benefits and require a separate application with the SSA.
In order to recover benefits from Social Security, the disability must prevent the veteran from performing substantial employment, and the condition must have lasted, or be expected to last one year or result in death. If you are still able to work or suffer only partial disability, you will likely be unable to receive Social Security disability benefits.
You must also meet other program requirements. This depends on whether you’re applying for Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) – which requires a certain number of work credits – or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) – which is needs-based and is available if you meet income and resources requirements.
How do I apply to receive first priority for processing my SSD claim?
As a qualifying veteran, you must begin the process of receiving Social Security disability benefits by first filing an application.
While you are filing your application you must tell the person with whom you are filing that you are a veteran with a 100% P&T rating. It is important to note that if you wish to request expedited processing in person you must call your local office to set up an appointment first. If you are filing an application online, the SSA requires you write, “Veteran 100% P&T,” in the “Remarks” section of your application.
The SSA will also want proof of your 100% P&T status so be prepared to provide the VA Notification Letter you should have received indicating your rating. Simply receiving VA disability compensation does not automatically entitle you to disability benefits from the SSA. If you encounter trouble proving your disability, seek help from a local disability attorney.
Find Legal Help from an Attorney at Rob Levine & Associates
Even if you meet all of the above requirements, you are not guaranteed to get a favorable determination from the SSA and begin receiving benefits. Given the often lengthy process involved in receiving Social Security disability benefits, even with the new expedited processing, it is often advisable that you seek the services of a Social Security lawyer.
Call Rob Levine & Associates at 866-LAW-SSDI (529-7734) to set up a consultation with an attorney to review your eligibility for Social Security disability, and for help securing the benefits to which you’re entitled.