Collecting Military Retirement VA Disability and Social Security 

In many cases, retired and honorably discharged members of the military can concurrently receive Social Security and military disability benefits. The process can be a bit tedious and complex and Schott Law can help with the minutiae should your initial application be denied.

If you’ve proudly served our country, you should be entitled to full and comprehensive benefits upon your return. If you’ve suffered an injury while in service and are now on VA disability compensation, you can rest assured that you can receive your military disability and Social Security benefits, but there’s a specific process to follow. 

Concurrent Benefits Receipt

Eligible veterans who receive military retirement pay and VA disability compensation may be able to supplement further with Social Security disability benefits. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) considers all disabilities, regardless if they’re connected to your service. When you initially apply for SSDI or SSI (Supplemental Security Income), you’ll follow the same general application but the Social Security Administration (SSA) does not count veteran benefits when tallying your potential benefit amount.

Notes About General Social Security 

If you served in the military after 1956, you’ve paid Social Security taxes on your earnings and as such are entitled to benefits. Under certain circumstances, periods of active duty from 1957-2001 could make you eligible for special “extra earnings” to be added to your earnings record. If the service was after 1968, Social Security adds these credits automatically.

Levels of Disability 

If your military disability level is at 100% you may be able to bypass the medical test and directly qualify for Social Security disability benefits. The SSA will follow a five-step process to determine the level of severity of your disability and how that correlates to potential long-term or permanent unemployment. There are options to appeal this process should you be denied and at that point, it would be wise to consult a knowledgeable Social Security claims attorney. 

Schott Law is proud to be a professional and reputable source of information for those who have put their lives on the line for our country. We’re happy to answer any and all questions you or a loved one have about receiving concurrent benefits from the VA and SSA. Call us today at (509) 328-5789 to learn more.