Paying for Home Care: The VA Aid and Attendance Program

As most of you know, one of the things I like best about being an elder law attorney is helping clients find ways to live in their homes for as long as possible and still receive the medical care they need. The VA Aid and Attendance program is one such option available to eligible veterans, their surviving spouses, and widows.

Aid and Attendance can be used to pay anyone, including the veteran’s child, to provide home care. It can also be used to pay for professional care in the home, assisted living, nursing home care, and more.

The tax-free monthly benefit can be significant. For example, in 2022 a married veteran can receive up to $2,431 per month to help with the cost of long-term care, while a surviving spouse can receive up to $1,318 per month.

To be eligible for Aid and Attendance a veteran must:
Have served 90 days or more of active duty, with at least one of those days taking place during a period of wartime
Have received a discharge other than dishonorable
Have medical expenses or care needs
Meet financial guidelines established by the VA
For a surviving spouse to be eligible for Aid and Attendance, he or she must have been married to an eligible veteran for at least one year and never remarried.

Many veterans mistakenly believe they have too many assets to qualify for Aid and Attendance. This is not surprising when you consider that most applications are initially denied, even when the veteran is indeed eligible. While the VA does require veterans to meet service, medical, and financial requirements, the latter can potentially be addressed through proper planning.

If you believe you are eligible for Aid and Attendance, or know a veteran, spouse, or widow who might be, I’m here to help.

Until next time, take care…