Veteran’s Financial Assistance for Home Care
The Veterans Administration offers a little-known source of money to assist paying long term care costs called Aid & Attendance. This is a tax-free, monthly pension for qualifying veterans/spouses with certain recurring medical and health related expenses, including homecare services. Generally, these referenced expenses are currently being paid privately by the individual. Of the 35+ million Americans age 65 and older in this country, approximately 11.5 million are veterans who served during a period of war – or their surviving spouses.
To receive the financial benefits, a veteran must have served on active duty during a period of war and received an honorable discharge. Single surviving spouses of such veterans are also eligible. Additional eligibility requirements include a documented medical disability or medical condition that requires regular assistance with Activities of Daily Living, and financial need.
Under the right conditions, many seniors in this country could qualify for up to $1,940/month in additional funds from the Department of Veterans Affairs.
However, there are many misunderstood aspects to the Aid & Attendance pension.
Veterans With Wartime Service
The Aid & Attendance pension is only available to veterans with wartime service. The VA has very specific enlistment dates relative to U.S. declared war…World War II (12/7/41 – 12/31/46), Korean Conflict (6/27/50 – 1/31/55), Vietnam Era (8/5/64 – 5/7/75 and 2/28/61 if “in-country” before 8/5/64), and Persian Gulf (8/2/90 – date to be set by law). The veteran must have served in a branch of the military, and been given an honorable discharge from service. Enlisted personnel are not required in out-of-country deployment.
Surviving Spouses Are Also Eligible
The Aid & Attendance pension benefit does provide assistance for surviving spouses of wartime veterans. If a veteran (male) spouse has died, the surviving spouse (widowed wife) may be eligible to receive some level of financial assistance. Copies of both 1) a marriage certificate and 2) a death certificate will be required documents for the pension application.
However, there are exceptions. For example, a divorce may have ended the relationship between husband and wife. A divorced spouse is not eligible for VA benefits through her ex-husband.
Also, there is now a “lookback” period regarding financial history. Applicants must meet certain criteria on service time, medical/health needs, liquid assets, and income. But age is not a factor.
Home Care Partners offers free consultation on the details concerning the actual application process and submittal.
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John D. Miller is the founder/owner of Home Care Partners, LLC, a Massachusetts business providing private duty, personalized in-home assistance and companion care services to those needing help in daily activities and household functions.
Phone: (781) 378-2164