This benefit is called the VA Aid and Attendance Pension ("A&A") and qualified Veterans or their Widows can receive monthly cash benefits up to the following amounts:
||Maximum Monthly Benefit
||$1,949 per month tax free
|$1,644 per month tax free
|Widow of Veteran
||$1,056 per month tax free
To Qualify the War Period Veteran must have:
- served 90 consecutive days on active military duty;
- received a better than dishonorable discharge; and
- served at least 1 day of active duty during a war period (there is no requirement that any service be performed in a combat zone).
The Widow must:
- not have remarried after the Veteran's death.
The Veteran (or Widow):
- must be certified by a doctor as needing assistance with his or her daily living activities.
- Must have significantly less than $80,000 in Allowable Countable Assets (subject to the discretion of the VA); and
- The Adjusted Household Income (Gross Household Income less all unreimbursed recurring medical expenses) must be less than the A&A benefit.
Veterans and Widows (referred to as "Claimants") can become Qualified for the A&A Benefit with Proper Asset and Income Planning:
Most A&A Claimants have difficulty qualifying for the A&A benefit due to their inability to meet the income and asset limitations. Elder law attorneys, however, can help claimants become A&A qualified through proper A&A benefit planning. The goal of A&A benefit planning is to help Claimants qualify for A&A, which in turn helps them pay for their medical expenses and postpones the depletion of their assets. Other goals are to preserve and protect the Claimants' assets and eliminate or postpone any need to rely upon Medicaid for care.
Presently, unlike Medicaid, the VA does not have any rules that restrict the gifting away of assets to reduce the net worth of the Claimant before qualifying for the A&A benefit. However, serious tax issues and Medicaid's rules and restrictions should be considered in any plan to qualify for the A&A benefit. Therefore, we recommend that any Veterans, or their Widows, who meet the service requirements should contact an elder attorney to learn if they can qualify for the A&A benefit. For an Elder Lawyer and/or resource in your area, please contact the Granny NANNIES nearest you by calling 800-316-2669 or visit our Locations page.