Aid and Attendance benefit can help veterans who need long-term care
By Hook Law Center
The pension is designed for veterans and surviving spouses who require help to perform activities of daily living (ADLs), such as dressing, eating, bathing or going to the bathroom. Individuals who are blind or live in a nursing home qualify for the pension.
Aid and Attendance is available to veterans who served for at least 90 days, with at least one of those days occurring during wartime, and to their surviving spouses. The disabilities do not need to be service-related.
To quality, the veteran or surviving spouse must own less than $80,000 in assets, with home and vehicle not included in this calculation. His or her income must also be lower than the Maximum Annual Pension Rate (MAPR), which is currently set at $21,107 for a single veteran. The income calculation does not include welfare benefits, unreimbursed medical expenses that have been paid or Supplemental Security Income.
Even veterans who have an income too high to qualify for a VA pension may qualify for the Aid and Attendance pension, so long as they have high medical costs that are not otherwise reimbursed.
The VA pays the difference between the veteran’s income and the MAPR, so the amount that a person receives from Aid and Attendance depends on his or her income.