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Social Security Column
Written by Erin Thompson, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist in Toledo   
Thursday, 07 November 2013 16:14

Social Security serves those who’ve served

On Nov. 11, we honor our Nation’s veterans for their service to America.

In recognition of those who put their lives on the line for our freedoms, Social Security offers members of the armed forces expedited processing of their Social Security disability applications.

The expedited process is available for any military service member who became disabled during active duty on or after Oct. 1, 2001, regardless of where the disability occurs. Some dependent children and spouses of military personnel may also be eligible to receive benefits.

Visit our website designed specifically for our wounded veterans – www.socialsecurity.gov/woundedwarriors. There, you will find answers to a number of commonly asked questions, as well as other useful information about disability benefits available under the Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) programs. Please pay special attention to the fact sheet available on that website, “Disability Benefits for Wounded Warriors.”

You’ll also find a webinar that explains the faster disability process available to wounded warriors. The program covers general information about Social Security disability benefits as well as topics unique to wounded service members. The online video is less than three minutes long and is a great introduction to disability benefits for veterans and active duty military.

On the same webpage, you’ll also find links to useful Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense websites. The requirements for disability benefits available through Social Security are different than those from the Department of Veterans Affairs and require a separate application.

Military service members are covered for the same Social Security survivors, disability, and retirement benefits as everyone else. Although the expedited service is relatively new, military personnel have been covered under Social Security since 1957, and people who were in the service prior to that may be able to get special credit for some of their service. To learn more about Social Security for current and former military service members, read “Military Service and Social Security,” available in our digital library at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs.

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