Disabled veterans groups are throwing their support behind a bill that would ease the process of Social Security Disability Insurance payments for injured veterans returning from combat duty.
The bill called the Recovering Service Members Disabilities Benefits Act would exempt veterans, including Reserve and National Guard service members who have suffered injury during combat from the 5-month waiting period that applies to veterans before they receive their Social Security Disability Insurance Payments. The bill is supported by the Disabled Veterans National Foundation, an organization of wounded veterans that is dedicated to helping injured veterans recover from the physical and emotional stresses of combat.
Social Security Disability benefits are in addition to disability benefits available through the Veterans Administration. Veterans may apply under both programs for benefits although the process for eligibility differs.
In addition to physical impairments, many wounded veterans return home with traumatic brain injuries, post traumatic stress disorder and other conditions.
The Recovering Service Members Disabilities Benefits Act is aimed at making life after combat easier for veterans who have suffered unimaginable trauma in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Act does not automatically approve veteran applications, nor does it expand the scope of the program to include more veterans. However, it does eliminate the waiting period for disability insurance benefits, for service members who have suffered disabilities from injuries in combat.
If the bill is passed by Congress, veterans who have suffered the most critical injuries will benefit the most. Additionally, servicemen and women, who are transitioning out of military service will also benefit from this bill.
Lisa Siegel is a Social Security disability lawyer helping persons with disabilities in the metro Atlanta region recover their rightful disability benefits. If you are eligible for Social Security, and have had a claim denied, speak with us to learn your rights.