The Aid and Attendance pension benefit actually has three tiers to it. The Aid and Attendance (A&A) benefit is the top tier, but there are two other benefit tiers that a veteran may be eligible for depending on their situation. Here is what you need to know about the Housebound and Basic levels of pension benefits.
The most distinct difference with this pension benefit is there is not “care” qualification. The veteran or spouse does not have to be paying for care. There is only the financial eligibility. And the veteran must be unemployed, at least 65 years old, and had honorable discharge from military. Make sure they served during an approved period of war.
Financial eligibility: below $1055 in monthly income, combined income is $1380 for veteran and spouse; surviving spouse is $708. If applicant falls below these levels, they can file for the basic level of pension.
A veteran or spouse can be awarded this pension if the level of care they need is not as extreme as facility care (assisted living, nursing home, etc.). The awarded amount of this benefit will be less because the amount of day-to-day help the applicant needs is less.
Care can be provided by family members or outside caregiver’s agencies. Families need to be reimbursed for the care and services they are providing just as they would an outside agency. *Tip: Do not ever pay the family member or caregiver cash as the applicant must have a record of payments via check, money order, etc. in order to apply.
Example: A veteran can get around the house for most the part, but he is on an oxygen tank.
Example: A veteran’s spouse is legally blind but still able to function on their own for the most part.
Example: A veteran can no longer drive themselves.
The VA will automatically consider this level if the claimant does not fully qualify for Aid and Attendance.
A veteran or spouse/widow cannot receive both the Aid and Attendance benefit and the Housebound benefit at the same time.
Still need help?
Want to know if you are eligible for the A&A or housebound pension? Try our eligibility calculator.
If you have any further questions about the A&A application, be sure to check out our forums.
Want to use your A&A benefit to find the right assisted living home for you?
Be sure to call (866) 913-2555 or visit SeniorAdvisor.com to start your search. A local care adviser can assist you in finding the right care type for you in your area using your Aid and Attendance benefit to pay for the costs. This phone call and assistance is NO cost to you.