Q: What if I win one claim and I lose the other?
A: Eligibility, guidelines, and applications are totally different for the VA and Social Security Administration. Decisions for one have no bearing on the other. Both types of decisions can be appealed.
Q: Do VA benefits affect Social Security Disability?
A: No. VA benefits do not affect Social Security Disability Income. (Though, they may affect SSI.) SSDI benefits are only based on your work history and the amount you have paid in.
Q: Can veterans get Social Security Work Credits for military service?
A: SSDI requires work credits, which you get for time in the military.
Q: Will I get special extra earning credits for military service?
A: A veteran that served between 1957 and 2001 can receive special extra earning credits for that military service. Special extra earning credits are only received for periods of active duty or active duty training.
Q: What steps should I take to prepare for my Individual Unemployability & SSDI claim?
A: First, gather all of your medical documentation as evidence. Statements from former employers can also be sent to the VA to support your claim.
Q: Should I use experts in my disability case?
A: For proving Individual Unemployability and Social Security Disability claims for mental conditions, working with a psychologist is very important both for treatment and for reports that they can write for you. You can also get statements from doctors outside of the VA. Vocational experts are also very important to SSDI and IU cases for writing reports that detail disabilities preventing applicants from working.
Q: Can I send both the SSDI and IU applications to the same place?
A: No, you need to send applications for VA Disability Benefits to the VA, while applications for Social Security claims go to the Social Security Administration.
Q: Who can help me with my applications?
A: Woods and Woods can help with both your Individual Unemployability and Social Security Disability Insurance applications, and if they are approved on the initial application, you don’t have to pay us anything. If not, then you have the option to hire us to work on your case.
Learn More: Calculate your rating with our VA Disability Benefits Rating Calculator
Talk to our Lawyers for Free About IU Benefits and SSDI
Need help with your IU Benefits and SSDI claim? Reach out to Woods & Woods for help. There is never a cost for a legal consultation to talk about your IU Benefits and SSDI claim. Ask us your questions about IU Benefits and SSDI Benefits at no cost.
When you call Woods & Woods, you get experienced Individual Unemployability lawyers and skilled Social Security Disability lawyers. We’ll examine both your IU Benefits and SSDI claim and see how we can best help you. Woods & Woods law firm can help veterans nationwide with their IU Benefits and SSDI claims.
When veterans can’t work, they probably can’t afford to pay a lawyer upfront. That’s fine. At Woods & Woods, you only pay your IU Benefits and SSDI lawyers if they win your claim. If you do not win your IU Benefits or SSDI claim, you pay nothing. We make it affordable to get a lawyer to fight for your IU Benefits and SSDI Benefits.
IU Benefits and SSDI Video Transcript
Hey guys, this is Neil Woods here from Woods & Woods Attorneys. Today, we’re just going to kind of be discussing Individual Unemployability and Social Security Disability Insurance. So, today’s talk is over Social Security Disability Insurance, not Supplemental Income. So if you’re looking for a video about SSI, this is not it. This is about SSDI and Individual Unemployability benefits.
There’s a misconception out there that veterans can only receive one benefit or the other. That’s not true. There were proposed laws that Congress and the administration tried to pass earlier last year that would have made it where you can only get one or the other. Luckily, VA disability compensation lawyers, veterans groups, Democrats, Republicans, you name it raised a lot of hell and it didn’t happen. So right now veterans are eligible to get Individual Unemployability and Social Security Disability Insurance.
So basically start off on some of the questions that people always ask us. One of them is, what if I win one claim and I lose the other? That happens because the VA and Social Security Administration have very different guidelines. They have different eligibility guidelines, you’ll submit your application differently, they look at evidence differently, they are two completely separate systems. One decision will have no bearing on the other. So if you’re approved at one, denied at the other, they’re totally separate from each other. Now, both of those if you are denied, you can appeal. That’s a nice thing, a denial is never the end of your claim on both of these.
Do my VA benefits affect my Social Security Disability? No, they’re just not going to. If you’re getting VA benefits, they’re not going to affect Social Security Disability Income. So, SSI potentially but SSDI, you’re not going to be affected. Your SSDI benefits are based solely off of looking back at your work history. And work history and how much you paid into it are not going to be considered from the VA on your eligibility except for a little section of IU benefits where you are going to look at, you know, that you can’t work.
Can veterans get Social Security work credits for military service? Yes. SSDI requires that you have work credits. You do get work credits for your time in the military.
Will I get special extra earning credits for military service? This is a little thing that veterans don’t know about. This is one of the reasons I think it’s so important to hire representation for both claims. Veterans that served from 1957 to 2001 can get special extra earning credits for their military service. Veterans that served after 2001 are not going to receive any of these. Special extra earning credits are only granted for periods of active duty or active-duty training. What that means is you’re going to get those work credits if you served from 1957-2001, and those work credits are going to count towards your eligibility for your SSDI.
People ask, “What steps should I take to prepare for my IU Benefits and SSDI claims?” Well, the first place to start is to just start gathering up your medical documentation. Both the VA and the Social Security Administration are going to want evidence. They’re going to want evidence of your conditions, how severe your conditions are, they’re going to want to look at can you work.
You can send to the VA former statements from your employers kind of saying “Hey, John was a great guy but his disabilities prevented him from really being a full-time employee. I would have fired anyone else but I really liked him.”
The next step we’re going to talk about is considered using experts.
If you’re applying for Social Security disability and individual employability for mental conditions, we can’t stress how important it would be to work with a psychologist. Now, granted that’s good for treatment but you can also have a psychologist write reports for you. These reports are going to detail things like, how bad your conditions are, how they affect your life, how they prevent you from working.
Another expert our veterans disability benefits lawyers use a lot of times is doctors outside of the VA. That’s something a lot of veterans don’t know this. If you get treatment at a VA clinic, you can still go outside of that, you can get doctor statements from doctors outside of the VA. We do on a very large number of the appeals that we file. We send in medical documentation that really details what your disabilities are, how bad they’re affecting your life and then on the VA side, we connect it to your service.
Vocational experts, these are extremely important if you want to obtain IU Benefits and SSDI Benefits. Vocational experts, what these folks do, a lot of them have a master’s degree in social work and in some other different educational backgrounds like that. But what they do is they write reports detailing, okay, John Q veteran has these disabilities and these disabilities prevent him from working.
So let’s just say you have a veteran who has a hearing issue and lost a leg from an IED in Iraq. The vocational expert is going to write a report detailing how they can’t do a desk job because they can’t hear on the phone, they have hearing problems. And then at the same time, they’re missing a leg, they can’t really do the physically demanding jobs that folks who can’t do desk jobs do. So, the vocational experts go and look at it and say, they can’t work behind a desk and they can’t work at a construction site, they’re kind of left out of a lot of jobs out there and because of that they’re never going to have employment that is substantial.
So, the next few steps, you’ll probably think this is pretty elementary but this is sometimes a problem. Your application for VA disability benefits is going to have to go to the VA. Your application for your Social Security claim is going to have to go to the Social Security Administration. Now, if you send those little men to one agency, they are not going to file it, they may … Who knows what they’re going to do with it. It’s the government. They may just throw it on the floor. But they do not have a duty to file your claim for you if you send it to the wrong place. So make sure you send your application for Social Security to the Social Security Administration and your claim for your IU benefits over to VA.
Basically, if you’re going to be applying for Social Security and you’re going to be applying for veterans disability benefits, that’s something that we can help with here at the firm. We can help with both of them and there’s never a cost to help with the application process. A lot of veterans are approved on both of them on the initial application, and if that happens, that’s great, congratulations. You don’t pay Woods & Woods anything for help with the applications.
If you’re denied TDIU benefits or you receive a low rating, if you don’t get IU Benefits and SSDI Benefits, then you have the option to hire us if you want. It’s kind of like you get a test run with us here through the application process. See if you like us, see if you think we do a good job. And then if you like us, you can have the option to hire us for the appeal.
Now, we don’t ever ask for money up front and both the fees are just settled at the end of the case, they’re a percentage of the back pay earned and case expenses, things like doctor support. But we will never ask for any of your future benefits. We don’t charge for phone calls, there are no billable hours here and if you do not win either one of those claims, you don’t pay us anything. You get to walk away off into the sunset. It’s a good set up because veterans that can’t work, they probably cannot pay a lawyer. So, if you can’t pay a lawyer and you can’t work, give us a call because we’re going to look at your IU Benefits and SSDI claim.