How to Determine Eligibility

The application process and paperwork required to submit an application for Aid & Attendance eligibility is relatively simple.  However, there is no real instruction manual.  I have helped numerous parties complete and submit documents to the VA.  We understand the specifics required, so we have never submitted an application that has not been approved.

The following criteria will determine eligibility for the Veteran Administration’s Aid & Attendance pension benefit.  

1. The veteran served at least 90 days of active military duty in one of the five armed services (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard), only one day of which must be in time of declared war.  The VA has specific calendar dates covering World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, and Persian Gulf.  Requires an honorable discharge on form DD-214.

2. Veteran or the surviving spouse has a medical diagnosis that states they have a requirement for assistance with at least two activities of daily living.  We consult the appropriate primary care physician to document medical/health conditions.

3. Liquid assets below threshold of $80,000.  If the household “nest-egg” of savings is greater, the VA will reject the application and advise applicants to “spend-down” their assets.  (Liquid assets include cash on hand, savings and checking accounts, stocks, mutual funds, certificate of deposits and IRAs.)  Assets such as real estate or personal property are not included. Reverse mortgages are considered loans.  In addition, there is no “look back” timeperiod for Aid & Attendance.

4. Insufficient monthly income to purchase required care.  Each case will be determined on an individual basis and is not limited to the above stated conditions.

The financial formula utilized by the VA can be somewhat confusing.  In simplest terms, we define household income.  Next, we tally privately paid health/medical expenses, which are subtracted from income figure.  This net number is then compared to the maximum pension benefit level for the applicant.  This will tell us the approximate financial benefit to the applicant.

Pension benefits are based upon a combination of monthly income (excluding VA Pension, Social Security Supplements and welfare payments) less the household’s re-occurring non-reimbursed medical expenses.  (Home care services provided by Home Care Partners are allowed as deductible expenses.)

Maximum Pension Amounts FY 2012

  • Veteran:  $1,644.00 per month
  • Surviving Spouse: $1,057.00 per month
  • Veteran and Spouse: $1,949.00 per month
  • Veteran and Veteran Spouse: $2,530.00 per month

These figures represent the maximum allowable pension benefits for each claim category.  These figures are NOT available to all applicants.  But I am able to determine expected amounts prior to formally submitting an application.

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Home Care Partners, LLC is locally owned/operated, and licensed in all Massachusetts communities. We provide private duty medical and non-medical, in-home assistance and companion care services to those needing help in daily activities and household functions. We work with client families to develop a personalized care plan which includes an in-home assessment. Services available on hourly and daily basis (24 hour/day live-in care). The agency is bonded and insured; employees are reference and CORI checked.

Home Care Partners works with qualifying veteran (and surviving spouse) applicants eligible for Aid & Attendance benefits through the Veterans Administration. We supervise the application process, gathering of supporting documentation, filing and renewals with the VA. We also work with the VA’s In-Home Respite Care Program.

 

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