Veterans of many generations have given their all to our country. In return, they are entitled to benefits and housing assistance programs that can help them through difficult times. One of the most useful programs is the VA Aid and Attendance benefit, also known as veteran’s benefits for assisted living. This program helps veterans pay for long-term care services, including assisted living centers and nursing homes. If you’re a veteran or spouse eligible for this program, here’s what you need to know:
VA Aid & Attendance: What Is It?
VA Aid & Attendance is a pension benefit that can help cover assisted living costs. It is also known as a veteran’s pension and is paid to veterans who have served at least 90 days of active duty.
The VA offers several different types of benefits to veterans, including disability compensation and pension. Veterans who qualify for these benefits may also receive assistance in paying for their care needs at an assisted living community, such as Meals on Wheels or housekeeping services.
To be eligible for VA Aid & Attendance, you must be a veteran who served at least 90 days of active military service and meets one of the following conditions:
- Be a veteran. You must have served in the active military, naval or air service, or Coast Guard during wartime. You might not be eligible for these benefits if you served during peacetime. You also cannot depend on someone currently receiving assistance from the VA or who was receiving assistance at the time of your death.
- Have served during wartime and be entitled to compensation for a service-connected disability.
- Your medical condition prevents you from doing two or more activities of daily living, such as dressing yourself, bathing, and preparing meals.
- You have reached age 65 or older, are receiving Social Security benefits, and require regular aid to maintain your home (this benefit can begin before you reach age 65).
- You must have been honorably discharged from service
Once you’ve decided whether it’s right for you, learn how to apply!
How To Apply
You can apply for veteran benefits for assisted living by visiting the VA website. The application will ask you questions about your medical condition, military service, and other relevant details of your life. Once you apply, it will be reviewed by a VA employee who will notify you if you qualify for assistance or not.
If you are uncertain about whether or not your particular situation qualifies as assisted living care under veteran’s benefits programs, it is best to speak with a VA representative before submitting any paperwork.
Choosing A Long-Term Care Setting
Now that you know what to look for, the next step is to find a long-term care setting that fits your needs. Start by doing some research and making a list of options.
Then, start visiting those places in person. Go on tours and ask questions. The best way to get a feel for what’s available is by seeing it in person! You’ll also want to ask staff about their program, policies, and reviews from residents or families who’ve been there before (often called “testimonials”).
We hope this article has helped you understand the VA Aid and Attendance benefit for long-term care. It is important to remember that this is just one of many benefits available to veterans, so you may want to talk with your local Veterans Affairs office or visit their website before making any decisions about assisted living.