The Elder and Disability Law Firm, APC
Veterans' Aid & Attendance: A Closer Look at an Underutilized Benefit
We have already covered the Veteran's Aid & Attendance Pension, but as it is such a misunderstood and underutilized program, it's worth taking a second, more in-depth look.
To recap briefly, A&A is a monthly pension benefit above and beyond the basic VA pension. It is awarded when a veteran, a surviving spouse, or even in some cases the spouse of a veteran still living has a medical disability that requires regular aid from another person to perform the basic functions of life.
This includes - but is not limited to - those who have round the clock care and/or those who have taken residency in an assisted living facility. But it is not necessary that you be completely incapacitated to receive this benefit. The medical requirement is only that you are no longer completely independent. You must require at least some daily assistance, whether from a professional or a family member, to perform basic tasks such as dressing, bathing, cooking, and/or eating.
Even if you don't qualify for the basic VA pension, you may still qualify for Aid & Attendance. While the burden of proof of your medical condition is higher, the income and asset ceiling is significantly higher as well.
What Can An Estate Attorney Do?
An estate attorney can assist in you in properly planning your finances to best position you to be eligible for this extra money every month. It is worth the time and trouble to investigate: some groups estimate that as many as 1 in 4 U.S. senior citizens might be eligible, yet only 5% of senior citizens are enrolled.
Contact a local Loma Linda VA-accredited attorney if you have any additional questions on this benefit or are interested in taking the first step in the application process.