Don't Miss Out On the Veterans Aid & Attendance Benefit
Updated on Nov 09 2018
Only a fraction of eligible veteran Americans over 65, and their spouses, know about the availability of the Aid & Attendance (A&A) pension through the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA). Learn about the benefit and whether you qualify.
More than one third of Americans are wartime veterans, yet there are thousands of unclaimed veteran’s benefits each year. Many families could be benefiting from available VA assistance to help pay for quality senior care, but they simply don’t have the education they need to know whether they qualify.
Learn more about the A&A pension and whether you are eligible for this wonderful benefit.
Take Advantage of This Long-Term Care Benefit for Veterans
The federal government guarantees veterans and their spouses some long-term care assistance to help pay for housing and healthcare costs. Basically, the VA assists U.S. Veterans and their families by providing supplemental income through pension benefit programs. The pensions are available to U.S. military veterans and surviving spouses.
What is Aid & Attendance Pensions Benefit?
Veterans and widowed spouses who require the aid and attendance of another person may be eligible for additional pension benefits for care assistance in the home or in a senior living community. The Aid & Attendance pension is available to honorably discharged wartime veterans with 90 days of active duty, and their surviving spouses.
In order to qualify for A&A, your physician needs to establish that you require daily assistance with tasks such as dressing, undressing, bathing, cooking, eating and others. The A&A pension can provide significant financial support to a veteran or surviving spouse in the following amounts:
- Up to $1,758 per month to a veteran
- Up to $1,130 per month to a surviving spouse
- Up to $2,085 per month to a couple
- Up to $1,380 per month to a veteran filing with a sick spouse
Who Qualifies for the Aid & Attendance VA Benefit?
A veteran or the veteran’s surviving spouse may be eligible if the veteran:
- Was discharged from a branch of the United States Armed Forces under conditions that were not dishonorable AND
- Served 90 days of continuous military service (active duty), with at least one day during the following wartime periods (did not have to serve in combat): * World War I: April 6, 1917, through November 11, 1918 * World War II: December 7, 1941, through December 31, 1946 * Korean War: June 27, 1950, through January 31, 1955 * Vietnam War: August 5, 1964 (February 28, 1961, for veterans who served “in country” before August 5, 1964), through May 7, 1975 * Persian Gulf War: August 2, 1990, through a date to be set by Presidential Proclamation or Law.
Important to keep in mind: If the veteran entered active duty after September 7, 1980, generally he/she must have served at least 24 months or the full period for which called or ordered to active duty (there are exceptions to this rule).
How Long Does the Aid & Attendance Application Process Take?
The Aid & Attendance pension benefit takes an average of nine months. In addition to forms to fill out, there’s a long list of documents to submit, including:
- A certified copy of a veteran’s marriage certificate
- A letter from a veteran’s doctor explaining the type of daily care he or she needs
- A veteran’s original discharge papers
- Proof of all of a veteran’s assets and income
While the application process can take awhile, the benefit is well worth the wait as the aid received will help cover thousands of dollars in long-term care.
Learn About Other Great Benefits for Veterans
Many veterans and their family are unaware of the assistance they can receive through the Department of Veterans Affairs, which is why so many benefits go unclaimed each year.
If you are approaching retirement, take advantage of VA benefits to help you fund your lifestyle and medical needs in your golden years. An expert financial advisor can also help you get your affairs in order so you’re ready for your future.
Other helpful resources include:
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