Social Security And Lump Sum Pensions: What Public Servants Should Know
If you work for an employer who does not participate in Social Security but has their own pension instead, you probably know that your Social Security options can be complicated with tricky rules that only apply to teachers and other public servants. These rules include the Windfall Elimination Provision and the Government Pension Offset.
Individuals often look for a way to soften the impact of these rules. Time and again I hear individuals wondering if they can sidestep these rules by simply taking their pension in a lump sum. After all, in just about every reference to these rules, the Social Security Administration says that the rules apply to individuals with a pension from work where no Social Security taxes were paid.
Soif theres no a pension being paid, do the rules still apply?
They do, but with a few exceptions. For certain individuals, taking a pension out in a lump sum can be a valid method of sidestepping these rules. If this interests you, read on. The rules for when and how are complicated, and you dont want to mess this up.
What Is The Difference Between Service Connected And Non Service Connected Disability
Service connected means that the veteran is disabled due to injury or illness that was incurred in or aggravated by military service. Non-service connected means that the veteran is disabled due to injury or illness not related to military service. Compensation is paid to a veteran with service-connected disabilities.
A Lifetime Of Security
We are with you from day one when your parents named you, and when you named your children. Most parents apply for their childs Social Security number at birth, usually through the hospital. When the time comes for your childs first job, the number is already in place.
A fun bonus of assigning Social Security numbers at birth is that we know the most popular baby names, which we announce each year. On our website, you can find the top baby names for the last 100 years.
You May Qualify For Legal Assistance
Even people who dont have state-run pensions and teacher retirement plans find the Social Security disability benefits application process confusing. We recommend asking a Social Security lawyer or disability advocate for advice about your specific situation before filing your claim. An experienced attorney can help you navigate your states laws and identify other programs that may offer you financial assistance.
Ready to see if you may qualify? Click the button below to start your free online benefits evaluation now!
How Do Ssdi And Retirement Work Together
Social Security disability insurance benefits exist to help Americans who suffer from a disabling injury or illness, but who cannot yet draw from their retirement benefits. If you are unable to work, but are not eligible for retirement, you need money now. The SSDI program essentially provides early retirement funds and benefits to individuals who are unable to work due to disability.
Once an individual reaches retirement age, they are able to draw from the full amount of retirement funds available to them. SSDI is no longer needed and simply converted to retirement benefits. In this way, both programs work together to provide much needed benefits to disabled Americans regardless of their age.
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Have You Or A Loved One Been Denied Social Security Disability Benefits
If you or a loved on has been denied Social Security Disability Benefits you need to speak with an experienced SSD attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Virginia Beach office directly at 757.490.3500 to schedule your free consultation. We have offices throughout Virginia including Chesapeake, Newport News, Norfolk and Suffolk.
Can I Get Va Survivor Benefits And Social Security
Many spouses and children of veterans have questions about VA survivors benefits. One of the most common type of survivor benefits is what is commonly known as DIC Benefits.
DIC stands for Dependency and Indemnity Compensation. In this article, I want to answer some of the most common questions that I get asked about DIC benefits.
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Vadisability Pay Vs Military Retirement Pay
A lot ofveterans have misconceptions about receiving VA disability pay and theirmilitary retirement pay. So, let me help clear up any misconceptions you mayhave about the two.
Military retirement pay and VA disability pay are entirely separate.
Military retirement is a pension that is based on your years of service. VA disability pay is based on your disabilities that impact your life after leaving the military.
Taxation: Military retirement pay is taxable atthe federal government level and is taxed in most states. VA disability pay isconsidered non-taxable income by the federal government. Now this is a bigadvantage, because your VA disability pay gives you more spending power becauseits never taxed. For example, if you were to receive $1000 from your militaryretirement and $1000 from VA disability pay, the $1000 from you disability paywould be worth more because it would never be taxed.
Tips About Va Compensation And Social Security
- SSDI and SSI are not intended to provide a full living wage the Social Security official site itself advises that in 2019 alone, Social Security paid an average monthly disability benefit amount barely enough to keep a beneficiary above the 2018 poverty level and any additional assistance you can apply for is crucial.
- If you have the ability to apply for VA benefits first, it can help to do so if you already have a 100% disability rating from the VA. Some vets cannot do this, but those who can should take advantage of the option to have their SSDI or SSI benefit application expedited as described above.
- VA compensation and military retirement pay combined may render some applicants ineligible for SSI, but SSDI compensation may still be possible.
- Your financial need will determine which Social Security program you qualify for when claiming disability benefits.
- VA rules for disability pay require the veteran to establish or provide proof that establishes that the medical issue occurred on active duty or was aggravated by it.
- SSDI and SSI are federal programs, but not limited to the military.
- VA disability compensation is limited to the service member, but some VA benefits are payable for spouses, caregivers, and other family members. Be sure to ask about these.
Wherecan I Get Help Applying For Va Disability Compensation
Its very common for veterans with qualifying disabilities to have trouble actually receiving benefits. The application process is complicated. Additionally, many veterans who do receive benefits dont receive the full amount to which they should be entitled.
Initially,many veterans get a lot of help from veterans service organizations, such asthe Veterans of Foreign Wars , Disabled American Veterans , or theAmerican Legion.
Even with the assistance of a qualified veterans service officer , many qualified applicants get rejected. If youre having trouble getting the benefits you deserve, you may need an attorney who specializes in VA disability benefits. To schedule a case evaluation with a qualified VA disability attorney, or call us at .
Thank you for your service, and we look forward to working with you.
Were There When You Get Your First Job
Every time you change jobs, your employer verifies your Social Security number with us. Doing so helps reduce fraud and improves the accuracy of your earnings records, ensuring you get the benefits you have earned.
Employers collect FICA, or Federal Insurance Contributions Act withholdings, and report earnings electronically to us. This is how we track your earnings and is how you earn Social Security retirement, disability, spouses, and survivors coverage for you and your family. A worker earns up to four Social Security credits each year and needs 40 credits, or 10 years of work, to qualify for retirement benefits. Its vital that you work at least 10 years to qualify for Social Security benefits to be based on your own work record.
Opening a free allows you to verify your earnings history and see if you will get Social Security retirement benefits. A secure also lets you estimate future benefits.
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What If I Have More Questions About My Va Claim
I understand you want your VA claim to be done as quickly as possible. But remember the ultimate goal to win your VA disability compensation claim.
You may eventually get there on your own, but it may be after a series of decisions by the Regional Office and Board of Veterans Appeals. Sometimes claims are appealed and remanded several times, which can cause a claim to drag on for years. If you are interested in avoiding unnecessary delay in your claim and want to do everything you can to maximize your chances of success, it is probably a good idea for you to consult with an accredited veterans disability attorney.
Travis Studdard is an attorney who focuses on representing veterans in VA disability compensation claims. He regularly writes about issues that are important to veterans and their families.
Is It Better To Retire Early Or Go On Disability
If you are approaching early retirement age and also have become disabled, you may be unsure whether you should take an early retirement or apply for disability until you reach full retirement age.
On the one hand, if you already know you have enough work credits to retire, the processing of starting your retirement benefits will be a lot easier than going through the laborious process of applying for disability.
On the other hand, you may not want to sacrifice the extra monthly benefits you could get if you waited until full retirement or age 70 to begin collecting benefits. If youre not too concerned about your financial stability, opting for early retirement might not seem like a big deal, especially if you have a pension through your employer or other types of retirement accounts like an IRA or 401K.
However, if youre like many Americans, you may need all the help you can get from the Social Security Administration. In this case, its most likely better to get approved for disability benefits rather than take an early retirement and lose out on your hard-earned benefits. While it can be true that getting approved for SSDI can take time, effort, and patience, disability benefits can offer you a kind of flexibility that retirement cantespecially if theres a chance of your disability improving.
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Health Coverage For People With Disabilities
If you have a disability, you have three options for health coverage through the government.
Medicaid provides free or low-cost medical benefits to people with disabilities. Learn about eligibility and how to apply.
Medicare provides medical health insurance to people under 65 with certain disabilities and any age with end-stage renal disease . Learn about eligibility, how to apply and coverage.
Affordable Care Act Marketplace offers options to people who have a disability, dont qualify for disability benefits, and need health coverage. Learn about the .
What Happens To Social Security Benefits If You Become Disabled
In addition to retirement benefits, Social Security pays survivors benefits to your family when you die. You also can get Social Security benefits for you and your family if you become disabled. For more information about these benefits, read . Understanding the Benefits . If you became disabled while on active military
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How The Windfall Elimination Provision Rule Affects Benefits Not Paid Through Teacher Retirement Plans
If youve never paid Social Security taxes, then the WEP wont affect you. The WEP rule only applies if youve worked another non-exempt job where you paid into the Social Security system. This program affects how the SSA calculates both retirement and disability benefits for people working in the public sector. If you live in one of the above 15 states, then the WEP rule only applies to people who:
- Are entitled to a Social Security benefit based on their own work history, and
- Have a work pension or participate in teacher retirement plans that exempted them from paying Social Security taxes.
Because the SSA never intended Social Security benefits to replace full pre-retirement earnings, the WEP reduces your eligible payment amount. Luckily, the most youll lose in Social Security disability or retirement benefits is half your state-run plans monthly benefit payments. If you paid Social Security taxes for 20 years, then your maximum disability or retirement benefit reduction under WEP is 40%. After 30 years, the WEP rule no longer reduces any monthly Social Security disability or retirement benefits.
How Workers Comp Affects Social Security Disability Benefits In Ohio
If you have qualified to receive workers compensation and Social Security Disability benefits, the Social Security Administration may reduce your SSD so that, at the most, your total monthly benefit equals 80% of what you earned when fully employed. In some cases, your combined benefit could be even less.
To decide whether an offset is required, the SSA determines the applicable limit of your total monthly combined disability benefit. Your applicable limit is the higher of either:
- 80% of your pre-injury income, or
- the total amount of SSD benefits received by all members of your family in the first month that you received workers comp. This is known as the total family benefit.
If your combined SSD and workers comp benefits for any given month exceed 80% of your pre-injury average earnings or total family benefit, the SSA will reduce your SSD payment.
To apply for SSD, you must report your workers comp settlement as well as any other disability payments you receive, such as from private insurance.
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How Do Va Benefits Affect Social Security
There are two different types of Social Security disability benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income .
SSDI only counts earned income therefore, VA disability benefits have no effect on entitlement to SSDI.
However, SSI is need-based any contribution from VA disability benefits will count towards income for the month. The income limit for SSI for 2018 is $750 per month. If you receive more than $750 in VA disability each month, you will not qualify for SSI.
In addition, VA disability will also lower your SSI payment. Because the Social Security Administration considers VA disability as income, it will subtract anything you receive from your potential benefit. This is called an offset.
For example, if you have a 20 percent disability rating and receive $269.30 a month from the VA, the SSA will deduct that from your potential monthly benefit. You would then only be eligible to receive $480.70 in SSI benefits.
What Do I Have To Prove To Receive Dic Benefits
Certain survivors of a veteran can qualify for DIC benefits when a veteran dies as a result of a service connected condition or a condition. This service connection can be demonstrated before or after the veterans death.
Also, certain survivors may qualify for DIC benefits regardless of the reason that the veteran died if the veteran had a 100% VA disability rating for 10 years or more prior to death. In other words, it may not be necessary to demonstrate that the death was from a service connected condition in these cases.
For more general information about qualifying for DIC benefits, take a look at this short article.
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Getting Both Social Security And Va Veterans Disability Benefits
It’s not uncommon for veterans to have both Social Security and veterans disability claims going on at the same time. Alternatively, some veterans receive veterans disability benefits before applying for Social Security disability.
An award of VA disability benefits, also known as service-connected disability compensation, is not based on income, so you can receive VA disability compensation and Social Security disability insurance at the same time. There is also VA pension, which is a needs-based program similar to Supplemental Security Income . VA pension is paid to veterans who have very little or no income and are disabled based on non-service disabilities. It is also possible to receive SSI and VA pension at the same time.
If you’re eligible, it’s best to qualify for VA disability compensation and Social Security disability insurance, since they generally pay more generous benefits than VA pension and SSI, but you should be aware of the other needs-based programs.
How Do Military Retirement Or Va Disability Benefits Affect Eligibility For Social Security Disability Insurance
If you receive military retirement benefits or veterans benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs , you might qualify for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration . Getting military retirement or VA disability benefits does not affect eligibility for Social Security Disability Insurance . On the other hand, having a disability that meets the VAs definition does not necessarily mean you will meet the SSAs disability standards.
The disability lawyers at Berger and Green can explain how military retirement or VA disability benefits affect eligibility for SSDI benefits. If the SSA denied your application, we can help you with the appeals process. Call us at today for a free claim evaluation.
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