The U.S. Census Bureau reported that in 2018, the average age of a U.S. veteran was 65. To give you even more perspective, the median age of even a Post-9/11 veteran is 37. Veterans, like everyone else, are aging. Tie that into service-connected disabilities, and you can quickly see how important it is to understand what sort of benefits are available to elderly veterans.
If you are a veteran, old or young, or if you have someone in your family who is (a parent, a spouse) then this is for you. Let’s go over some things you should know and consider.
Aid & Attendance
This is a pension benefit. If you are receiving a pension, Aid and Attendance is money that can be added to it. Another additional benefit is that it can be extended to surviving spouses of veterans. To be eligible for Aid and Attendance, you must meet one of these requirements in addition to receiving your basic pension:
- Are 65 or older (or are disabled)
- Are bedridden
- Require assistance to live and complete daily functions (e.g., showering, dressing)
- Living as a patient in a nursing home
- Your eyesight is limited to a corrected 5/200
When you apply, your level of need will be considered along with your income levels. Through Aid and Attendance, you can receive additional money every month—in the thousands of dollars—to use towards various methods of elderly care.
Nursing Homes & Residential Settings
The decision to pursue a nursing home or a residential setting will be based on the degree of need that either you or the veteran in your life requires. The former will provide medical care in a clinical environment whereas residential settings add personal care in a location that feels more like a standard home. Examples of a nursing home:
- Community Nursing Home
- State Veterans Homes
- VA Community Living Centers
Examples of residential settings include:
- Assisted Living
- Community Residential Care
- Medical Foster Homes
- Adult Family Homes
Aid and Attendance benefits can pay for a nursing home if you are not eligible for Medicaid. The amount of money you can receive for a nursing home from Aid and Attendance (if eligible for Medicaid) is almost negligible—unless you live in a state veteran home (mentioned above).
In regards to assisted living, the money you received from Aid and Attendance can be sent directly to the living facility you live at.
Kevin Tharpe, P.C.
Although there are benefits available, the process to obtain them is challenging. This is partly due to the amount of documentation and paperwork that is required, the need to be accurate, and the time it takes to process. If you have legal questions about your veteran’s benefits or anything related to elder law, schedule your consultation today. You can also reach us at 866-253-6994.