Florida Veterans Aide & Attendance Attorneys
Just as serving in the military played a huge role in many veterans’ lives, it may also play a large role in planning for the long-term care of a veteran or a surviving spouse. As veterans get older and require more extensive care at home or in an Assisted Living Community, many families don’t get care (or as much care as they need), because they are afraid of running out of money.
Many Veterans and their loved ones are not aware of a special VA benefit for wartime veterans, earned by their sacrifice to the USA. The special benefit makes long-term care more affordable by paying over $2,100.00 per month, tax-free, for married veterans that qualify. Unmarried veterans can receive over $1,750.00 per month, tax free. And widows can receive over $1,150.00 per month, tax-free.
At Chiumento Selis Dwyer P.L., our knowledgeable Florida Veterans Aide & Attendance attorneys have spent more than four decades helping families find ways to make care more affordable for their elderly loved ones. We have extensive experience securing these special VA pension benefits for veterans in many areas, but especially throughout Flagler and Volusia counties. We are proud to serve those who risked their lives to serve our country. Our dedicated elder law and Elder Care attorneys can help your family:
- Prove that a veteran meets the medical eligibility requirements for benefits
- Meet the income and asset requirements for VA Aide & Attendance (A&A) benefits, even when the veteran thinks that they can’t
- Assess tax implications for any financial moves your family is considering
- Assist the surviving spouse, family, and/or loved ones by guiding them through the VA benefit application and VA Aide & Attendance Program Eligibility process
- Reapplying for VA benefits if the veteran has been denied
- Devising an overall long-term care strategy
If you or your loved one bravely served our country, you deserve to take advantage of all the VA benefits that may be available to you. But most times, the VA doesn’t tell people about these benefits and some representatives give false information.
Contact our knowledgeable Florida Veterans Aide & Attendance attorneys today to learn how we can help you. Call or fill out our online form now to get started.
What Are VA Aide & Attendance Benefits?
Many veterans find that they do not qualify for basic VA pension benefits due to income limits. However, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs offers an additional special benefit for veterans and their survivors who require the “aide and attendance” of someone else. This benefit is different than basic VA Pension benefits. If fact, income eligibility is less of a barrier for many Veterans after our Elder Law or ElderCare attorney help them.
You or your loved one may qualify for Aide & Attendance benefits if:
- You require assistance with activities of daily living, such as bathing, eating, getting dressed, going to the bathroom, and adjusting prosthetics, to name a few.
- Your disability requires that you stay in bed other than when you are receiving treatment.
- You are in a nursing home due to mental or physical incapacity.
- You have very poor eyesight or are legally blind.
Veterans that have no service-connected disability can be eligible for VA Aide & Attendance Benefit. However, you must provide extensive proof of your medical condition in order to qualify.
Our Florida Veterans Aide & Attendance attorneys will help you throughout the application process. We’ll help you fill out the application. We’ll help you complete a detailed report and organize evidence to show physical or mental impairment, loss of coordination, and other conditions that affect the ability to perform basic daily functions. We also help you detail how well the applicant gets around, what he or she does during a typical day, and whether the applicant is able to leave the home.
Contact us today to get started on the VA benefits application process.
What Are the Requirements to Qualify for VA Aide & Attendance Benefits?
In addition to the factors listed above, veterans must meet various requirements to qualify for these pension benefits. Our knowledgeable Florida Veterans Aide & Attendance lawyers have helped many veterans determine their VA benefits eligibility, helped veterans that don’t qualify become financially eligible, and helped veterans and their loved ones apply for VA benefits, and we stand ready to help you and your family with this complicated process.
Veterans may qualify for benefits if they are any of the following:
- 65 or older
- Totally and permanently disabled
- In a nursing home receiving skilled nursing care
- Receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
- Receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
In addition to the basic requirements, the veteran must also meet service requirements to qualify for A&A benefits. The veteran must have completed at least 90 days of active-duty service, with at least one of those days served during a wartime period. (For those who entered active duty after September 7, 1980, the requirements are somewhat different.)
The VA recognizes the following as wartime periods:
- World War II (December 7, 1941 – December 31, 1946)
- Korean conflict (June 27, 1950 – January 31, 1955)
- Vietnam era (February 28, 1961 – May 7, 1975, for veterans who served in the Republic of Vietnam during that period; otherwise August 5, 1964 – May 7, 1975)
- Gulf War (August 2, 1990 through a future date to be set by law or Presidential Proclamation)
Income and Asset Requirements
In order to qualify for Aide & Attendance benefits, veterans’ COUNTABLE annual income must be less than the amounts below MINUS unreimbursed care or medical expenses:
- $21,466 for a veteran with no dependents (Approximately$1,789.00 per month)
- $25,448 for a veteran with one dependent, usually a spouse (Approximately $2,121.00 per month)
- $13,794 for a veteran’s surviving spouse (Approximately $2,120.00 per month)
In addition, many professionals generally estimate that assets should be limited to $80,000 for a couple or $50,000 for a single applicant. However, those are not hard and fast numbers set by the VA, and each case is considered individually based on the applicant’s health and the amount of care required. The overriding factor is whether the person has enough assets to cover the care that will be required during their estimated remaining lifetime.
Income and asset requirements can be extremely tricky, but our strategic Florida Veterans Aide & Attendance attorneys can help you and your family understand all your options for meeting these requirements while protecting the income and assets you have worked hard to achieve.
Schedule a consultation today to learn more about our estate planning tactics and how we help veterans across Florida.
How is the amount the VA will pay for Aide & Attendance Benefits Calculated?
Calculating the amount of benefits available is complicated. If you or your loved one meets the eligibility requirements, your VA Aide & Attendance Benefit amount is equal to the maximum income, listed above, minus any “countable income” you or your loved one bring in annually.
Countable income include your and your spouse’s, if any, wages, disability payments, retirement payments, interest and dividends from annuities, and income from any businesses, MINUS UNREIMBURSED care or medical expenses..
So, using the example in the last section where the veteran has income of $1,500.00 and $3,500.00 of unreimbursed care expenses, that Veteran would have received around $1,789.00 per month. That will nearly eliminate the deficiency, which will allow the veteran’s life savings to last much longer.
In addition, surviving spouses may also be eligible for VA Aide & Attendance benefits (a maximum of $1,149.50 for a surviving spouse.
Let Our Florida VA Aide & Attendance Lawyers Help You Provide for Your Loved One
Watching someone who once stood strong in fighting for our country deteriorate in health later in life can be difficult. But the best thing you can do is to explore your options and learn about all the resources available to you and your family.
At Chiumento Selis Dwyer P.L., we want you to know that you are not alone in this process. Our compassionate Florida Veterans Aide & Attendance attorneys are committed to pursuing the benefits our veterans deserve.
If you are ready to learn more about how we could help your family, call or fill out our online form to schedule a consultation now.
Additional Resources for Florida Veterans:
Flagler County Veterans Services
Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs
Florida Regional VA Benefit Office
VA Facilities in Florida
Volusia County Veterans Services