Aid and attendance is a benefit paid to veterans, their spouses or their surviving spouses. In order to qualify, you must meet certain criteria. Although your eligibility may change, the one absolute qualification is that you are eligible for a basic pension from the VA; the aid-and-attendance benefit is in addition to the monthly pension benefit.
Other eligibility requirements for the aid-and-attendance benefit are active duty service stipulations, disability status, and asset and income limits. Five reasons you may not yet qualify for this benefit are as follows:
1. You were discharged dishonorably from the service. One of the primary prerequisites for aid and attendance is that you were discharged from the service other than dishonorably.
2. If you did not serve at least one day during a period of wartime and had less than 90 days of continuous service, then you may not be eligible for the aid-and-attendance benefit. Qualifying wartime periods are:
·World War I – April 6, 1917 to November 11, 1918
·World War II – December 7, 1941 to December 31, 1946
·Korean War – June 27, 1950 to January 31, 1955
·Vietnam War – August 5, 1964 to May 7, 1975; in-country dates are February 28, 1961 for those serving before August 5, 1964
·Persian Gulf War – August 2, 1990 through the present. No official end date has been established yet.
In order to qualify, veterans who entered active duty subsequent to September 7, 1980 need to have served a minimum of 24 months, or for the entire time for which they were called to active duty. Exceptions exist to this requirement. #Veterans #AidAndAttendance
3. If you are able to care for yourself and do not require assistance with bathing, dressing, feeding, and so forth, you may not at this time qualify for aid-and-attendance benefits. However, if your circumstances change then you may qualify in the future.
4. You may have more assets and annual income than are allowed by law. In order to qualify for aid-and-attendance benefits, you must have zero countable income. Not all income is countable. Certain public assistance benefits, such as SSI, are not countable income, so if you receive public assistance you may still qualify.
If you have substantial assets, they may disqualify you for aid and attendance. However, personal items such as your home, your vehicle, clothing, furniture, jewelry, and so forth, are not counted as asset. There is at present no asset limit for those who receive aid-and-attendance benefits but eligibility is determined on the basis of need.
5. Lack of documentation may disqualify you. All those who apply for the aid-and-attendance benefit must have the following documentation:
·VA Form 21-22
·VA Form 21-4142
·Letter from your physician on VDVA Form 10
·Statement from your physician on VA Form 21-2680 OR a statement from your nursing home on VA Form 21-0779
·Statement of medical expenses on VA Form 21-8416
·Voided check in order to activate direct deposit of benefits
If you do not have these documents, you may not qualify. Surviving spouses will also need a copy of the marriage certificate and the death certificate.
Veterans in the Detroit MI area are fortunate to have several facilities that can help them determine eligibility. Detroit MI also has a regional VA facility that can assist veterans with determining eligibility.
If you are a veteran, or you have a loved one who is, and you’re looking for coverage and financial support, USA War Vet is here for you. Call us at 1-800-850-5504 or visit us at www.usawarvet.org to learn more.