Although millions of American veterans and their families qualify for veterans’ benefits, few receive them. What accounts for this tragedy? This is due in part to confusion over the proffered benefits and eligibility requirements. Another reason is that the application and approval process can be extremely complex.
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Amy B. Van Fossen is a Melbourne, Florida, veterans’ benefits attorney who is accredited by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for the preparation & presentation of A&A claims. She has the experience to assess your situation and help determine if you may be eligible for the benefit. If so, she will guide you through the process with consideration and respect, working hard to make sure you receive the maximum benefit amount available for your service to our country.
There is a variety of veterans’ benefits available to veterans that include:
- Aid and Attendance pensions
- Special monthly compensation
- Burial and memorial benefits
Beware of untrustworthy annuity advice. Florida teams with annuity salesmen and saleswomen offering veterans’ benefits and planning assistance. However, their goal is often a quick sale at the expense of the veterans’ long-term financial needs.
Because our lawyer is VA-accredited, you can feel confident that you and your family will receive knowledgeable, reliable advice that will help protect your assets — not squander them. Even many members of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs do not fully understand the intricacies of veterans’ benefits law, so consult an attorney who concentrates in this area of practice.
Veterans’ Pension A&A Benefits Rules May Change
Elderly veterans who served during a war-time period may be entitled to vital pension benefits to cover expenses under the Veterans Aid and Attendance (A&A) pension program. A surviving spouse of a veteran may also qualify for pension benefits. Unfortunately, the Department of Veterans Affairs is proposing sweeping changes to the eligibility rules and how the VA may calculate benefits moving forward.
We are well-respected for our dedication to protecting the interests of seniors in all manner of long-term care planning matters. With the potential changes to the A&A law, it is more important than ever for veterans to seek the help of a qualified elder law attorney who has knowledge of the rules and experience as a VA-accredited lawyer.
Changes to A&A Law Make it More Important Than Ever to Have Experienced Representation
Under the new proposed regulations, the VA has created a new definition of a veteran’s net worth based upon a calculation of countable assets and income. The rules may use the community spouse resource allowance (CSRA) under Medicaid as the net worth limit for A&A benefits eligibility— the CSRA is adjusted every year. The Aid and Attendance changes do not include a veteran’s primary residence and a reasonable amount of land up to two acres as a countable asset. In other words, a residence on a lot larger than others in the neighborhood or a home on a farm larger than two acres may create countable real estate for Aid and Attendance eligibility purposes.
Historically, the VA has not imposed a penalty for transferring assets prior to applying for pension benefits. That process would change if the current formulation of rules goes into effect. The VA would look at all asset transfers occurring within three years of an application for Aid and Attendance pension benefits. Any asset transfer during the 36-month look-back period could result in a significant delay in pension benefits. The VA has proposed a penalty of up to 10 years for improper transfers. Given the significance of the potential penalty, it is vital for eligible veterans or the surviving spouse of a veteran to speak with a VA-accredited elder law attorney for guidance on long-term care planning before making any decisions that could create a costly mistake.
Veterans’ Aid & Attendance
Providing the Money You Need to Pay for Long-Term Care
The VA Aid and Attendance program provides pensions to help eligible veterans or eligible widowed spouses pay for care. It also allows for a family member, such as a son or daughter, to provide this care. The Aid and Attendance program can be used to help pay for in-home professional nursing care, assisted living rent, medical insurance premiums, prescription drug co-pays, and much more.
Our law firm has assisted veterans and their widowed spouses in Brevard County to preserve their assets and remains in their own homes for as long as possible by using other financial resources, such as the VA Aid and Attendance pension program.
Who is Eligible for VA Aid and Attendance Pension Benefits?
The Aid and Attendance program will pay qualifying veterans up to $2,230 per month and the widowed spouses of veterans up to $1,209 per month. In order to be eligible for this program, the veteran or his or her spouse must meet the following requirements:
- The veteran or spouse must have valid medical expenses, which may include long-term care needs.
- The veteran must not have received a dishonorable discharge.
- The veteran must have served at least one day during a wartime period and at least 90 days on active duty.
- The veteran or spouse must meet certain asset and income restrictions.
Do not assume that your net worth or income is too high to qualify for a pension. Talk to Melbourne Veterans’ Aid and Attendance attorney Amy B. Van Fossen to see if you are eligible for this veterans’ benefit.