When an aging loved one needs senior living, adult children are often shocked to learn Medicare doesn’t pay for these often steep expenses. For some families, covering the cost of care without some form of assistance just isn’t possible. One frequently overlooked program that might help bridge the gap is the Veteran’s Aid & Attendance benefit. This program is designed to help veterans and their surviving spouses access the care they need.
Understanding whether or not a loved one is eligible and working your way through the application process can be discouraging for families.
Here’s a quick overview of what you need to know.
Veteran’s Aid & Attendance Benefit Eligibility
The Veteran’s Administration takes many factors in to consideration when determining eligibility.
The first criterion a veteran needs to meet is that they must have served at least ninety days of active military service. At least one day of that service must have been during a period of war.
The Veteran’s Administration has designated the following as times of war:
- 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)
- Gulf War (August 2, 1990 – through a future date to be set by law or Presidential Proclamation)
Next, the veteran must meet one of the following criteria to receive senior care benefits:
- Age 65 or older, OR
- Totally and permanently disabled, OR
- A patient in a nursing home receiving skilled nursing care, OR
- Receiving Social Security Disability Insurance, OR
- Receiving Supplemental Security Income
Finally, a veteran or their surviving spouse must pass the yearly family income and net worth standard. These are guidelines set by Congress every year.
If a veteran or surviving spouse you are the caregiver for lives in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, we can help you explore local assisted living communities. We also have resources to help you better understand your options for financing care. Contact us to learn more!
Senior Living Specialists is a free service for seniors and their families. We are compensated by a referral fee when a senior moves into a community or care home.