My mother, a 90+ year old widow of a WWII Veteran, finally received her first A&A payment recently after a very long, long ordeal. The whole process started in December 2009 when we met with a local attorney to help us apply to both the Medicaid Diversion Program, and the VA's Aid and Attendance Program. This person was referred to us by an Assisted Living as being a "VA Approved" attorney. To make a long story short, the attorney never processed any of the applications even though she confirmed to us that they did several times. Unfortunately, we didn't find this problem until 9 months later, (in September 2011), when I called the VA to inquire about her Aid and Attendance application. Needless to say, we had to start the whole process again after losing 9 months of waiting time. Mother finally received a payment. Looks like it was retroactive to Sept or Oct 2011. It's hard to tell since we have not received a letter from the VA yet explaining the benefit payment. I guess this will be arriving soon. Is it typical to receive payment before a letter?