Back on Feb. 10, we discussed how people who cannot work due to a disability sometimes have to wait a long time before their Social Security disability benefits application is decided upon. Most SSD applications are rejected, and it can take years before an appeal finally gets resolved. Meanwhile, the strain of having little to no income continues to be a huge burden.
The SSA is trying to speed up the process for at least a segment of applicants. It announced recently that some disabled military veterans will soon get their SSD claimed processed much more quickly.
The Department of Veterans Affairs issues numbers that attempt to “rate” the level of a veteran’s disability. A 100 percent Permanent and Total rating would seem to indicate a severe disability.
Starting in mid-March, vets who have been rated permanently and totally disabled by the VA will get to move to the front of the line for SSD benefits. The SSA says that this does not mean that their applications will automatically be accepted. It simply means that they will not have to wait long for their application to be accepted or rejected.
The men and women of the military who have sacrificed their physical or mental health deserve our deepest respect. Besides speeding up the SSD process for some veterans, this new policy may help the general public as well. Shrinking the backlog by pulling some applications out early can only speed things up for the rest of those waiting for a decision from the SSA.
Source: Stars and Stripes, “Veterans could have Social Security disability benefits expedited,” Jon Harper, Feb. 19, 2014