Can I collect on my spouse's VA disability and my SSDI?
There can be a lot of confusion when it comes to VA, SSDI, and SSI disability benefits and how they may impact your eligibility to them. Firstly, a person or their spouse who receives VA disability will have no problem collecting their full SSDI disability benefit. There are no offsets on the part of Social Security for these benefits. SSDI entitlement is based solely on your work and earnings prior to your becoming disabled. Simply put, SSDI is not a need based disability program and it has no income or resource limits.
Related: Social Security Disability SSI - Eligibility Requirements, and Eligibility and qualifying for disability.
If a person is receiving SSI or a concurrent SSI, SSDI disability benefit, spousal VA benefits may affect eligibility. The reason for this is that SSI is a need based disability program; therefore beneficiaries are subject to income and resource limits.
The above statements only involve the effect that VA disability would have on Social Security Disability programs. If you are receiving VA need based benefits, you should contact the VA to determine if there are any adverse effects upon your benefits should you become entitled to SSDI.
About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.
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