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You can apply for veterans benefits three ways: online at eBenefits, in person at the closest VA regional office, or by mail when you complete VA Form 21-526. Before you apply, you need to gather and document the following information:
Any former service member is considered a veteran of the armed forces. You are still considered a veteran if you only served one day, and/or you were discharged under other than dishonorable conditions.
You may be eligible for veterans benefits if you are a:
To be considered eligible for disability compensation as a veteran, you must have a service-related disability and be discharged under other than dishonorable conditions.
If you are a veteran or the next-of-kin of a veteran, you will most likely be able to obtain a free copy of your military records from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). All military records are now filed with the NARA—not your local VA office.
To request records online, use the eVetRecs System. You also can obtain your records by mailing or faxing a copy of SF-180 to:
Yes. Unless you are considered “unemployable,” you should be able work while receiving benefits. When you apply for benefits, the VA will determine if you are unemployable.
Yes. The benefits you receive from the VA are not considered income. The Social Security Administration will not factor veterans benefits into your total income, which means you may still be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits.