Can I Get SSDI & Veterans’ Benefits?

If you’re a veteran and you’re disabled, you may be wondering if you can qualify for both Social Security Disability benefits and veterans’ benefits at the same time. The Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) both have their own disability programs. Could you qualify under both programs? It is possible.

While it is possible for someone to qualify for both veterans’ benefits and SSDI benefits, the eligibility requirements under both programs are different, and you would have to apply separately under each program. For instance, the VA will sometimes pay benefits to someone who is partially disabled. Meanwhile, the SSA has a very strict definition of a disability.

In order to qualify for SSDI benefits, the applicant must have a condition that is so severe, that he or she cannot engage in any gainful activity or meaningful work. Also, to meet the SSA’s definition of a disability, the medical condition must be expected to last at least one year or result in death.

Qualifying Under Both Programs

When veterans apply for disability benefits under the VA program and the SSDI program, they may find that they qualify under one program but not the other. Or, they may find that they qualify under both.

“VA disability compensation (pay) offers a monthly tax-free payment to Veterans who got sick or injured while serving in the military and to Veterans whose service made an existing condition worse. You may qualify for VA disability benefits for physical conditions (like a chronic illness
or injury) and mental health conditions (like PTSD) that developed before, during, or after service. Find out how to apply for and manage the Veterans disability benefits you’ve earned,” according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Are you eligible for VA disability compensation? To find out, click here. What about being eligible for SSDI benefits? To learn more, read our article, “SSD for Wounded Warriors.”

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