It is not uncommon to find veterans who do not know they, as well as some of their family members, are eligible for Veterans Aid & Attendance (Veterans A&A) benefit programs. This is surprising to most who find out. These benefit programs provide low-income veterans (those ages 65 or older) with financial assistance if their service occurred during specific wartimes. Other family members, including surviving spouses of veterans who qualify, should check in to see if they are eligible to receive Veteran A&A support benefits.
The specific war times include service during WWI, WWII, the Korean War, The Vietnam War and the Persian Gulf War. If a veteran served at least 90-days, to include at least one day of active war service, they qualify for Veteran A&A program benefits. If the veteran is under the age of 65, they are not eligible. Veterans are also disqualified if they do not receive an income such as social security benefits, retirement fund payments or another source of verifiable income.
Regarding verifiable income, there is a specific formula in place not unlike any other situation where benefits are calculated for low-income families and individuals. Income is verified and an annual total is obtained, then the VA administration subtracts what they consider to be excessive healthcare costs. These costs are prescriptions not covered by health insurance, long term care, insurance payments, assisted living and so on. If the total is greater than 5% of the MAPR (Maximum Annual Pension Rate), the veteran is eligible for benefits.
Note: MAPR (Maximum Annual Pension Rate) only applies to pensions, and nothing else. Keep this in mind when researching other benefits that may be offered to you because, if they do not have to do with pensions, beware that it could be a fraudulent offer. There are individuals masking themselves as officials and scamming people across the globe.
There is a large amount of documentation required during the application process including proof of income, as well as proof of all medical expenses. If, for any reason, you are concerned about the process or your assets, consider consulting with an Asset Protection Lawyer. They will aid you throughout the process, as well as help you with asset protection planning. Consider creating a will, as well as complete any estate planning necessary during this process as well. It’s best to have an overall picture of your benefits, what to do with them and how to set yourself up for the future.