Are You Entitled To Veterans Disability Benefits?

Date:November 24, 2014

Veterans Disability Benefits Military Officer Saluting U.S. Flag

At the Manchester, NH Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman, PLLC, we are honored to provide information and assistance to those who have worn the uniform of the United States of America and are entitled to veterans disability benefits. There are many excellent resources for veterans to begin the process of determining if they are entitled to veterans disability benefits. The most informative websites of the federal government are the Social Security Administration and the Veterans Administration (VA). For residents of New Hampshire, information is available through the State Office of Veterans Services. Helpful private websites include Vets HQ, the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), and Disabled American Veterans (DAV).

Many veterans are unaware that they are entitled to veterans disability benefits through the Social Security Administration. Military service members can receive expedited processing of disability claims from Social Security through the Wounded Warrior allowance. Benefits available through Social Security are different than those from the Department of Veterans Affairs and require a separate application. The expedited process is used for military service members who become disabled while on active military service on or after October 1, 2001, regardless of where the disability occurs.

Social Security pays veterans disability benefits through two programs: the Social Security disability insurance program, which pays benefits to you and certain members of your family if you are “insured,” meaning that you worked long enough and paid Social Security taxes; and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, which pays benefits based on financial need.

Certain members of your family may qualify for veterans disability benefits based on your work. They include:

  • Your spouse, if he or she is age 62 or older;
  • Your spouse, at any age, if he or she is caring for a child of yours who is younger than age 16 or disabled;
  • Your unmarried child, including an adopted child, or, in some cases, a stepchild or grandchild. The child must be younger than age 18 or younger than age 19 if in elementary or secondary school full time; and
  • Your unmarried child, age 18 or older, if he or she has a disability that started before age 22. (The child’s disability also must meet the definition of disability for adults.)

NOTE: In some situations, a divorced spouse may qualify for veterans disability benefits based on your earnings if he or she was married to you for at least 10 years, is not currently married, and is at least age 62. The money paid to a divorced spouse does not reduce your benefit or any benefits due to your current spouse or children.

For more information on determining if you or another veteran may be entitled to veterans disability benefits, or for assistance with filing a claim for veterans disability benefits, contact the Law Office of Manning & Zimmerman, PLLC at (603) 624-7200.

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