Is It True That DIC Benefits From The VA Have No Impact On SS Benefits?

Jun 29 2018 - 9:15pm

My late husband was a veteran and had a 100% service -connected disability. When he passed away last year I applied for and am currently receiving DIC benefits (dependency indemnity compensation) from the Veterans Administration. I am currently receiving approx. $1285 in DIC. This is NOT income based and it is NOT taxable income. I am currently 58 and plan to apply for SS survivor benefits at age 60. My understanding is that DIC benefits have no impact on SS benefits in any way. Is this true? Thank you!

Hi,

I'm sorry for your loss.

Yes, nothing that you receive from the VA would have any bearing on your Social Security benefits regardless of whether you're drawing Social Security benefits on your own record or widow's benefits.

If you've worked long enough to be eligible for Social Security benefits on your own record, your best strategy is likely one of the following:
1) File for reduced widow's benefits at age 60 or as soon as your earnings will permit at least some benefits to be paid, then switch to your own record at age 70; or,
2) File for reduced retirement benefits at age 62 or as soon as your earnings will permit at least some benefits to be paid, then file for unreduced widow's benefits at your full retirement age.

Normally, you would want to start out drawing the lower benefit first and then switch to the higher record when it reaches it's highest potential rate. Our maximization software could sort all of this out for you and help you determine your optimal strategy.

Best, Jerry