Aid and Attendance is a benefit that veterans and their spouses can receive from the Veterans Affairs and can be awarded in addition to the basic pension that veterans receive. However, you must first be eligible for that basic pension. VA aid and attendance benefits are available for qualified individuals who need financial assistance to pay for in-home care, assisted living facility costs, or nursing home expenses. This article will provide you with some basic information about VA aid and attendance benefits, including the maximum amount you can expect to receive.
Service-Connected vs Non-Service Connected Benefits
These disability benefits are not service-connected which means your disability does not need to have resulted from your military service. However, veterans cannot receive both service-connected and non-service connected benefits simultaneously. VA aid and attendance benefits are available for applicants who are eligible for the VA pension, who meet service requirements and certain disability benefit requirements, and who meet the specified income and asset limitations.
Basic Eligibility for VA Aid and Attendance Benefits?
The veterans pension is a benefit that is paid to wartime veterans who have limited or no income. They must also be at least age 65 or permanently disabled. A Death Pension is also available based on need for surviving spouses of deceased wartime veterans, as long as they have not remarried.
Understanding the Service Requirements for VA Aid and Attendance Benefits
The specific service requirements for a veteran to qualify for VA aid and attendance benefits. If a veteran was honorably discharged from a branch of the United States Armed Forces and served 90 days of continuous active duty military service. The wartime periods that are eligible for benefits include World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the Persian Gulf War. The veteran need not have served in combat.
The Disability Requirements for VA Aid and Attendance Benefits
Veterans, spouses of veterans, and surviving spouses may be eligible for VA Aid and Attendance benefits in certain situations. If the individual needs the assistance of another person in order to perform personal activities required in everyday living, including bathing, feeding, dressing, and toileting. Also, if the individual needs assistance in protecting themselves from dangerous elements of their daily environment they may qualify. Individuals who are bedridden because of their disability may also qualify. Those who reside in a nursing home because of physical or mental incapacity or are blind.
How is the Maximum VA Aid and Attendance Benefits Amount Determined?
The maximum VA Aid and Attendance Benefits amount that can be awarded is based on several factors set by Congress, including annual income, annual basic pension, and Aid and Attendance limits. First, the applicant’s countable family income must not exceed the annual limit set by federal law. The maximum Aid and Attendance benefit that can be paid monthly to a single veteran is $1,794.
Determining Your Countable Family Income
In order to qualify, your countable family income must not exceed the limit set each year by the federal government. But, what does countable family income include? Essentially, countable income is the income that is received by the person applying for benefits and his or her dependents. This income includes not only work income, but also disability and retirement benefits, interest and dividends, and any net income from a business. The income limits for VA aid and attendance benefits is higher than for the basic veteran’s pension.
Annual VA Aid and Attendance Benefit Rate for 2018
The current VA Aid and Attendance benefit rates for 2018 are as follows:
|Single Veteran with no Dependents||$22,577|
|Veteran with Spouse||$26,766|
|Veteran with a Veteran Spouse||$26,766|
|Veteran with a Veteran Spouse who is Housebound||$29,764|
|Both Spouses Receiving A&A Benefits||$35,813|
In 2019, all veterans pension rates will increase by 2.8%. When filling out the VA Aid and Attendance Benefits application, there are some specific documents you will need to have available in addition to the documents the government requires. Once you have gathered the necessary documents and information, It is time to fill out the necessary forms for completing the application. You need to obtain and complete VA Form 21-527EZ (For Veterans) or VA Form 21-534EZ (For Spouses). If you need assistance, you can contact the Veterans Administration in your area. Our Los Angeles VA Aid and Attendance benefits attorney can also help.
Download our FREE estate planning worksheet today! If you have questions regarding estate planning, trust contests, or any other trust administration issues, please contact the Schomer Law Group either online or by calling us in Los Angeles at (310) 337-7696, and in Orange County at (562) 346-3209.
#estateplanning, #schomerlawgroup, #vaaid&attendancebenefits