We’ve talked a lot about Alpha™ lately, our sister company that provides advocacy services to veterans applying for service-connected disability benefits from the Veterans Administration (VA). So, if you’re a veteran, can you get Social Security disability insurance (SSDI) benefits too?
The truth is that, if you feel you may qualify for both, then it’s in your best interest to apply for both benefits. Let’s clear up some of the myths associated with SSDI and VA disability compensation:
Does Social Security Offset Veterans Disability Benefits
Myth: If you receive SSDI, your veterans disability benefit will be reduced.
Truth: The two disability benefit programs are entirely separate. You can receive full SSDI benefits as well as veterans disability compensation from the VA. (Note: this does not apply to retirement pension programs.)
Does One Program Automatically Qualify Me for the Other
Myth: If you are deemed 100 percent disabled by the VA you will automatically qualify for SSDI.
Truth: Since both programs are fully separate with different eligibility rules, receiving one does not mean that you qualify for the other. You will have to fully complete all required paperwork with the help of your Alpha Advocate, for VA benefits; and with the help of your Freedom Disability Advocate, for SSDI benefits. (Note: If you are applying for SSDI, your medical history is a key component to prove disability to SSA. Your Freedom Disability Advocate will need to know about your veterans disability claim with the VA and all your treatment history at the VA or while in the military.)
Do I Have to Get Veterans Disability First
Myth: The VA must approve your veterans disability case before the SSA will consider it.
Truth: Again, each agency employs its own standards. The SSA will want to see a treatment pattern associated with your service-connected medical condition, but SSA does not require that the VA, or any branch of the military, certify or approve that you have a disability.
The one thing that both the VA and SSA have in common, however, is that both federal organizations have very complicated application processes which require knowledge and expert navigation to get through. The Freedom Disability leadership team is proud to say that now we can help veterans get both SSDI, with Freedom Disability – and VA disability compensation with Alpha.
Note: All representation coordinated by Alpha is provided by our employees, the Advocates, who are accredited by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). No private organization that trains and employs accredited agents has been legally recognized by the VA for the purposes of preparation, presentation, and prosecution of claims. This work must be done by the Advocates themselves and not organizations.