"Aid and Attendance Pension" is a special Veteran's Program designed to help veterans and/or their surviving spouses receive the financial support necessary to ensure their continuing care in their own home or in an assisted living or nursing home setting. Benefits may also be available for house-bound individuals that require daily assistance to maintain their health, dignity and safety.
Many families struggle to provide necessary care for aging or disabled Veterans or their surviving spouses. Unfortunately, most of these families are unaware of an important benefit available through the Department of Veterans Affairs to which their loved ones may be entitled. It is called Aid and Attendance.
For qualifying veterans, Aid and Attendance is paid in addition to the basic pension rate for seriously disabled wartime veterans who have limited or no income, and who are age 65 or older, or, if under 65, who are permanently and totally disabled.
Some key things to know about the Aid and Attendance benefit:
Aid and Attendance is a pension benefit and is not dependent upon service-related injuries.
Wartime veterans and their surviving spouses may be eligible.
Certain medical and financial requirements must be met.
Aid and Attendance can help pay for care in the home, nursing home or assisted living facility.
The Application Process
Application for Aid and Attendance Benefits is a complex and lengthy process. The forms are available for you to do this yourself, but be advised that if you apply and your application is denied, you must wait a year before you can reapply. For these reasons, many people seek assistance in completing the application. Note: It is illegal for anyone to charge you a fee to help complete the application or file for benefits.
Our office can assist with you with this process – at no cost to you.
The Aid and Attendance Benefit – How Much Could You Receive?
The cost of assisted living, nursing home or home health care can be substantial. In fact, a 2015 survey conducted by Genworth Financial found that the national median monthly rate for a one-bedroom apartment in an assisted living facility runs $3,600, the national median daily rate for a semi-private nursing home room is $220, and the national median hourly rate for a licensed home health aide is $20. Aid and Attendance Benefits could help defray these types of costs for qualified veterans and their surviving spouses.
The 2016 Maximum Benefit
Maximum Monthly Benefit for Surviving Spouse: $1,149*
Maximum Monthly Benefit for Single Veteran: $1,788*
Maximum Monthly Benefit for Married Veteran: $2,120*
Maximum Monthly Benefit for Married Veteran Couple: $2,837*
*Note: these maximum benefit amounts may fluctuate and the actual benefit that is approved may be less.
How Do I Qualify for Aid and Attendance Benefit?
What if you are service and medically eligible, but have too many assets or too much income to qualify? You may consider rearranging your assets and/or income to qualify, which may include re-titling or giving away assets, or establishing a Veterans Administration Aid and Attendance Pensions Benefits Trust. Making these types of changes is perfectly legal, but doing so properly can be complicated. Beware that some actions taken to qualify for VA benefits could create a penalty period, or perhaps even disqualify you entirely from receiving Medicaid benefits should they be needed.
Business Resources for Returning Veterans
American Hometown Heroes was founded to assist Veterans who are looking to start a new business. Through this initiative, independent yellow page publishers have banded together to provide professional advice and marketing assistance to any returning veteran with a desire to start a new business in their hometown (or has recently started a local business) – all at no charge to them! The program includes a comprehensive advertising program for an entire year. Find out if you qualify for the American Hometown Heroes program and sign up to get started.