Veterans are national treasures and should be treated as such. Unfortunately, the systems in place to support veterans are often cumbersome and difficult for them to navigate—particularly for elderly and disabled former service members. Because Alperin Law serves the Hampton Roads area—home to one of the highest concentrations of veterans in the country—we are well versed in the estate planning and elder law issues affecting veterans. As VA-accredited attorneys, we are qualified to help with Veterans Pension applications. If you think you or a loved one might be eligible for these important benefits, contact us for help in making sure you get the benefits you deserve.
Veterans Pension Aid and Attendance Benefits Help Pay for In-Home Care, Assisted Living, and Nursing Home Care
Quality long-term care comes with a large price tag. In Virginia, the average cost of a nursing home is more than $7,500 a month and assisted living facilities often cost in excess of $4,500 a month. These costs are prohibitive for most people, but if you are a veteran who served our country during a period of war, you may qualify for Aid & Attendance (A&A) benefits. This program is designed to help cover the cost of in-home care, assisted living, or nursing home care. Unlike VA disability compensation, A&A is not tied to a service-related injury. It is, however, need-based, so applicants must meet income and asset eligibility standards. If a veteran requires the assistance of another person to perform tasks of daily living, he or she may qualify for Aid & Attendance benefits. Determining eligibility for A&A is complicated, but you must meet these basic criteria:
- Military service. The applicant must have served at least 90 days of active duty, with at least one day occurring during a time of war (The VA provides a list of eligible service dates on its website.) He or she must also have been other than dishonorably discharged.
- Disability. The veteran must be over the age of 65 or permanently and totally disabled, requiring assistance from others to engage in regular activities and the tasks of daily living, such as dressing, bathing, eating, using the bathroom, and getting out of bed. Living in a nursing home and having a severe visual or cognitive impairment can also qualify a veteran for A&A.
- Income and Assets. The applicant’s countable income and net worth must be less than an amount determined by the VA.
Surviving spouses of veterans meeting these criteria are also eligible. Trust our VA-accredited attorneys to figure it out for you.
How the Elder Law Team at Alperin Law Can Help You Qualify for VA Pension Aid and Attendance Benefits
For many older or disabled veterans, the requirement for financial need is the most difficult criteria to meet because their income or personal assets are simply too high. However, just because they exceed the income and asset limit doesn’t mean they can afford the healthcare services they need. This puts many veterans in a terrible position. If you or a loved one is in this situation, there are options available to you. Through careful estate planning, we may be able to reallocate income and retitle assets so that they are not included in your countable income. You can protect those assets and still qualify for the Aid & Attendance benefits you need to get quality care.
Don’t Miss Out on These Valuable VA Pension Benefits
You owe it to yourself and your family to find out if you are eligible—or can become eligible—for these benefits that will help cover the cost of your care. It is important to be aware that if your initial application is denied, you will have to wait a year before you can reapply. Many elderly or disabled veterans cannot wait that long to get the care they need. When you work with the Veterans Pension attorneys at Alperin Law, we will make sure your application is complete and accurate the first time.
We serve all communities in Eastern Virginia, including Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Newport News, Isle of Wight County, Hampton, and the Eastern Shore. Call to speak to one of our VA-accredited attorneys today.