Can one apply for Social Security disability when receiving veterans’ disability benefits?
Updated: Jun 4, 2021
Yes, but it depends on the type of Social Security disability benefits that you apply and qualify for. There are two types of Social Security disability benefits. Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is a disability benefit based on a person’s work and earnings history. A veteran can receive both VA disability benefits and SSDI benefits.
There’s also good news for veterans who have received a 100% Permanent and Total disability rating. Those veterans are eligible for expedited processing of their SSDI or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) applications and appeal.
Unlike SSDI, SSI is based on a person’s financial need. Depending on the amount of VA disability that a veteran receives, the SSI disability benefits will be reduced, or the veteran will be ineligible to receive SSI disability benefits.
VA disability is also different than SSDI and SSI. VA disability benefits can be partial or total. But SSDI and SSI are all-or-nothing. In other words, a disability claimant either completely meet the definition of disability for Social Security disability benefits, or the claimant receives no benefits.
If a person is receiving VA disability benefits but needs to file a SSDI or SSI disability application, the person should contact an experienced disability attorney for help and advice proving the case.