There are a lot of benefits from the VA. This article is focused on a benefit where the VA will give money to veterans, spouses, and widow(er)s who need help with their care. This benefit is commonly referred to as Aid and Attendance.
Here are the requirements to qualify for Aid and Attendance.
- Service during a period of war
- Needs Assistance with at least 2 activities of daily living
- Qualifies financially
- Can’t have a dishonorable discharge
Service during a period of war
The veteran must have served 90 days on active duty, at least one of which occurred during a period of war. They did not have to be on the front lines or participate in the war. They just had to be on active duty for at least one day during the war time period. The war time periods are listed below.
- World War I (April 6, 1917 – November 11, 1918)
- 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)
Assistance with at least 2 activities of daily living
The veteran, widow(er), or spouse has to need help with at least two activities of daily living. “Help” does not, necessarily mean that someone has to bathe that person or get them dressed. It might just mean that they need someone present when they shower in case they fall. Or maybe they need someone to help them get in and out of their bed or chair. If they are still running marathons and driving across country, they don’t qualify yet. But, if they need some assistance day to day, don’t rule them out. Talk to an elder law attorney and see what they think.
DON’T RULE YOURSELF OUT! VA PLANNING IS LIKE MEDICAID, JUST BECAUSE YOU DON’T AUTOMATICALLY QUALIFY DOESN’T MEAN YOU CAN’T GET THE BENEFIT. YOU MAY JUST NEED TO DO SOME PLANNING BEFORE YOU APPLY.
In order to AUTOMATICALLY qualify, a person cannot make too much money or have too much money. A person makes too much money if their income is higher than their medical expenses. Determining what medical expenses qualify can be very complicated so, again, don’t rule yourself out. Talk to an Elder Law Attorney.
A person owns too much if they have more than $123,600 in assets, not including their house. But just because you are above that limit doesn’t mean you can’t qualify. It just means you need to plan ahead. Talk to an elder law attorney.
No Dishonorable Discharge
A person is not eligible for VA Aid and Attendance if they received a dishonorable discharge.