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Veterans Aid & Attendance Benefits

Do you need additional income to make your home care or assisted living care plan work? The strict requirements for Medicaid eligibility make Veterans Aid and Attendance benefits an essential resource for many war time veterans and their spouses.

The Department of Veterans Affairs is changing eligibility regulations for veterans who need the A&A pension to continue living at home, or in assisted living. Info on proposed regulations:
Proposed asset limits, primary residence rules and 3 year lookback for asset transfers:
Requirement: need for 2 Activities of Daily Living or unsafe for veteran to be left alone:

agingcare.comLink to PDF File: Federal Register Federal Register with Proposed Aid & Attendance Regulations discussed in our video podcasts
Click for link to: submit comments on proposed Aid & Attendance Regulations
Click to read: Detailed article on Asset Limits, primary residence, 3 year look back and penalty period for asset transfers, by Attorney John L. Roberts
Click to read: Viewer Comments
Proposed Changes to Aid & Attendance Affect Caregiver Pay by Attorney John L. Roberts
Forbes Blog Post: VA Proposed Rule Is Attack On Veterans and Families

2015 MAPR: Maximum Annual Pension Rates (effective 12 / 1 / 2014)

Single Veteran

Annual / Monthly
Low Income $12,868 / $1,072
House bound $15,725 / $1,310
Aid&Attendance $21,466 / $1,788

Surviving Spouse of Veteran

Annual / Monthly
Low Income $8,630 / $719
House bound $10,548/ $879
Aid&Attendance $14,353 / $1,196

Veteran with One Dependent

Annual / Monthly
Low Income $16,851 / $1,404
House bound $19,710 / $1,642
Aid&Attendance $25,448 / $2,120

Source for Veteran's Pension Rates. Source for Surviving Spouse Pension Rates. To decide whether to award Aid & Attendance, the VA looks at the value of "liquid assets" like cash, stocks, IRA, 401k, other tax-deferred income, bonds, mutual funds, art, coins, stamps, and collectibles. The Aid and Attendance pension regulations consider whether some or all of the claimant’s estate should be used for the claimant’s care. The VA considers:
whether the property can be readily converted into cash at no substantial sacrifice;
life expectancy;
number of dependents who meet the definition of “member of the family” potential rate of depletion, including unusual medical expenses under the principles outlined in 38 CFR §3.272(g) for claimant and dependents. In addition to assets, the VA looks at monthly income. If unreimbursed medical expenses are equal to your household income, you are entitled to the maximum Aid & Attendance benefit amount listed on this page.

What are the Service Requirements?
You don’t need a service connected disability, or service in combat. Here are the 3 service requirements:
green Anything “Other than dishonorable discharge”
green The veteran served on active duty at least 90 days
green At least one day of service during a period of war:

Period of War Beginning and Ending Dates of eligible service
World War II December 7, 1941 to Dec. 31, 1946
Korea June 27, 1950 to January 31, 1955
Vietnam “in country” February 28,1961 to May 7, 1975 (includes service before Aug 5, 1964)
Vietnam Era August 5, 1964 to May 7, 1975
Gulf War August 2, 1990 through a date to be set by law or by the President

If the veteran was honorably discharged and served ninety consecutive days active duty, with at least one day during war time, the veteran and spouse may be eligible. These Aid and Attendance benefits can be combined with Social Security retirement and employment pension income, to make long term care planning possible for the veteran and/or spouse.

Proposed rules for Aid & Attendance Pension