published Thursday, November 8th, 2012

Social Security: Social Security helps vets

By Gregory Holmes
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    Gregory Holmes, district manager for Social Security

Nov. 11 is more than just a national holiday; Veterans Day is a time to honor the men and women who risk their lives to protect our freedom. We at Social Security ask you to join us in saluting the men and women of the armed forces. Be sure to say "thank you" to a veteran on this important day.

For those who return home with injuries, it will be our turn to help them. If you know any wounded veterans, please let them know about Social Security's Wounded Warriors website. You can find it at www.socialsecurity.gov/woundedwarriors

The Wounded Warriors website answers a number of commonly asked questions, and shares other useful information about disability benefits, including how veterans can receive expedited processing of disability claims. It is important to note that benefits available through Social Security are different than those from the Department of Veterans Affairs and require a separate application.

The expedited process is used for military service members who become disabled while on active military service on or after Oct. 1, 2001, regardless of where the disability occurs.

Even active duty military who continue to receive pay while in a hospital or on medical leave should consider applying for disability benefits if they are unable to work due to a disabling condition.

Active duty status and receipt of military pay does not necessarily prevent payment of Social Security disability benefits.

Receipt of military payments should never stop someone from applying for disability benefits from Social Security.

A person cannot receive Social Security disability benefits while engaging in substantial work for pay or profit.

However, the work activity is the controlling factor and not the amount of pay the person receives or military duty status.

Learn more by visiting www.socialsecurity.gov/woundedwarriors.

Submit questions to local Social Security Director Gregory Holmes by writing to Business Editor Dave Flessner, Chattanooga Times Free Press, P.O. Box 1447, Chattanooga, TN 37401-1447, or by emailing him at dflessner@timesfree press.com.

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