Veteran's Aid and Attendance Planning
Veteran's Aid and Attendance Planning
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has a special pension for Veterans and Widows of Veterans called the Veteran’s Aid and Attendance Pension. This pension can provide thousands of tax-free dollars a year to help pay for the high costs of long-term care expenses (defined under the VA as unreimbursed medical expenses).
J.S. Burton has Accredited Attorneys appointed with the Department of Veterans Affairs and is authorized to prepare, present and prosecute claims in order to qualify you for benefits. The firm serves clients throughout eastern Virginia.
Veteran's Pension Amount
A Veteran or the Widow of a Veteran may qualify for a special pension, the amount of which varies depending on the Claimant’s marital status (married, single, widowed).
For 2021, the maximum monthly pension award for those qualifying for Aid & Attendance is:
- Surviving Spouse of a Veteran: $1,244.
- A veteran with no Spouse or dependent children: $1,936.
- A married couple where the Veteran requires care: $2,295.
- A veteran is healthy but Spouse requires care, Veteran qualifies for Income Improvement Pension: $1,520.
There are two levels of qualification. The Claimant must meet both levels of qualification. The first test is based on facts that cannot be changed (time in service, type of discharge, etc.). However, the second level allows for the claimant to make changes in order to meet the requirements. Those changes include reducing annual income and increasing recurring monthly medical expenses just to name a few.
First Level of Benefit Qualification
- The veteran must have served 90 consecutive days on active duty.
- The veteran must not have received a dishonorable discharge.
- The veteran must have served at least 1 day of active duty during a war period. There is no requirement that any service be performed in a combat zone.
- The Widow must not have divorced the Veteran or remarried after the Veteran’s death.
- The Claimant must be determined to need assistance with various daily living activities.
Second Level of Benefit Qualification
- The household cannot have more than the Allowable Countable Assets determined by the Veteran's Administration.
- The adjusted Household Income must be less than the VA Aid and Attendance (A&A) Pension Benefit. Although this income test is a complicated one, an experienced attorney can assist you through the process.
Veterans Benefit Attorney Virginia Beach Williamsburg
In order to qualify for the VA Aid and Attendance (A&A) Pension your countable assets must be below the threshold limits and your income must meet the VA test. With proper legal planning, the Veteran or the Veteran’s Widow can qualify for A&A Pension moneys and other assistance, while preserving family assets. The pension has made a major financial difference in the lives of many veterans and their surviving widows struggling with the costs of long-term care. J.S. Burton, P.L.C.has successfully obtained pension awards for many families and offers a free consultation.
The attorneys of J.S. Burton have spoken to many national and local organizations and offers educational seminars concerning this pension. The practice serves clients throughout eastern Virginia.
“Professional, courteous, vast knowledge and explanations were superior!”- Nicole G.
“I found his professionalism, clarity, and expertise very evident and would definitely recommend his practice.”- Lillie B.
“John Burton and his team are true professionals.”- Denise W.
“Our work with Attorney John Burton was all we had hoped it could be.”- Jim F.
“Mr. Burton and his team go above and beyond in ensuring that your assets and future are protected and organized!”- Adrea J.
Learn About Your Legal Options
What is estate planning?
When someone passes away, his or her property must somehow pass to another person. In the United States, any competent adult has the right to choose the manner in which his or her assets are distributed after his or her passing. (The main exception to this general rule involves what is called a spousal right of election which disallows the complete disinheritance of a spouse in most states.) A proper estate plan also involves strategies to minimize potential estate taxes and settlement costs as well as to coordinate what would happen with your home, your investments, your business, your life insurance, your employee benefits (such as a 401K plan), and other property in the event of death or disability. On the personal side, a good estate plan should include directions to carry out your wishes regarding health care matters, so that if you ever are unable to give the directions yourself, someone you know and trust can do that for you.
How do I name a guardian for my children?If you have children under the age of eighteen, you should designate a person or persons to be appointed guardian(s) over their person and property. Of course, if a surviving parent lives with the minor children (and has custody over them), he or she automatically continues to remain their sole guardian. This is true despite the fact that others may be named as the guardian in your estate planning documents. You should name at least one alternate guardian in case the primary guardian cannot serve or is not appointed by the court.
When should a Special Needs Trust be established?Generally, a Special Needs Trust should be established no later than the beneficiary’s 65th birthday. If you have a disabled or chronically ill beneficiary, you may want to consider establishing the Special Needs Trust at an early age. One benefit of having the Trust in place is that if the disabled beneficiary becomes the recipient of funds such as gifts, bequests or a settlement from a lawsuit, they can immediately be transferred to the Special Needs Trust without affecting that individual’s eligibility for government benefits.
What is a living will or advance medical directive?A living will or advance medical directive informs others of your preferred medical treatment should you become permanently unconscious, terminally ill, or otherwise unable to make or communicate decisions regarding treatment. In conjunction with other estate planning tools, it can bring peace of mind and security while avoiding unnecessary expense and delay in the event of future incapacity.