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The Wounded Warrior program was created by the Social Security Administration to expedite disability claims for disabled military personnel who became disabled while on active duty on or before October 1, 2001, regardless of where the disability occurs (foreign soil or in the United States).
Active duty is considered military personnel serving in the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, or Coast Guard. Additionally, students at United States Military academies or Reserve components of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard may also qualify.
Social Security Disability benefits are separate from benefits offered to disabled veterans through the Department of Veterans Affairs. Disabled veterans may be entitled to Social Security Disability Insurance if they are disabled with a severe condition which is expected to last for 12 continuous months and they have worked, paid enough in employment taxes and are considered insured. Injured servicemen who are not insured may qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
Wounded Warrior applications are processed by Disability Determination Services offices and the length of time to process a claimants' claim can vary based on the type of disability of the serviceman, the length of time it takes to gather medical information from the claimant's treating sources and whether or not the DDS must send the claimant to a consultative examiner to gather additional information.