People that serve in the military make huge sacrifices for our country, but they do have access to some benefits that are very useful. Most people are aware of the fact that there is a veterans retirement pension that is earned after at least 20 years of service.
This provides some great opportunities for veterans. The amount of the pension goes up depending on the length of service time. An individual could choose to spend their entire career in the military and earn a maximum pension as a result.
Another option would be to retire after 20 years and then embark on a career in the private sector. You would be getting a payment every month from the military along with your salary, so you would be in a very good position by the time you become eligible for Social Security.
Though this opportunity is there, a lot of people that join the service do not want to stay in for that long. For this reason, many folks assume that you are simply not going to receive any type of pension if you do not spend at least 20 years in the military.
In fact, this is not necessarily the case. There is an often overlooked pension that sits apart from the military retirement pension.
Veterans Special Pension
If you serve for a minimum of 90 days with at least one day on active duty during wartime, you meet the length of service eligibility requirement for the veterans special pension. This pension is potentially available to veterans that are 65 years of age or older.
You can also qualify if you are permanently and totally disabled even if have not attained senior citizen status. A veteran that is in a nursing home can qualify, and SSI and SSDI recipients are eligible.
This pension is intended for veterans with limited financial resources, so there are income and asset limits. It should be noted that your home is not counted, and one motor vehicle is not a countable asset.
The rules were changed relatively recently to set a hard limit on the countable asset limit. At the time of this writing in 2020, the net worth limit is $129,094. Right now, the maximum annual benefit for a single recipient is $13,752.
Aid and Attendance Special Pension
Your benefit would increase if you can prove that you need help with your activities of daily living, and it goes up even higher if you are considered to be “housebound.” The max benefit for those that qualify for aid and attendance is $16,805, and it is $22,939 for housebound-eligible veterans.
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