HI, I'm new and need help determining A&A benefits

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Nicolle, Mar 30, 2010.

  1. Nicolle

    Nicolle Newbie

    :)(Thank you for wealth of information..this place is just wonderful)!! :)

    I have actually been working on my mom's applicaition for months and thought I had everything all under control, ready to send, until I found your message forum :)
    But after reading through 26 forum pages, I am even more confused!

    To give a brief summary.. I am helping my mom with this application. She is of sound mind, but gets overwhelmed with this type of paperwork so I stepped in. I have all of my deceased fathers military records which were just mailed to me a couple of weeks ago (his DD-214s), doctors letter, marriage and death certificate.

    1. What am having a hard time with is calculating the financial portion to determine if she is eligable.
    ASSETS:
    She has $18,000 in a joint checking account with me but as far as I am concerned, this is HER money. That is all of her assets..not IRA, stocks etc. She pays rent on an apartment.

    INCOME:
    A small pension from Macy's for $175.00 a month
    SSI - approx $876.40 month before Medicare deduction
    SBP from dad - $725.00 a month
    That totals approx $21,316.80 a year.

    MEDICAL EXPENSE:
    Medicare premium = 96.40 month
    Home attend twice a week = $592 a month
    Prescriptions - $55 / month
    ...and a few other little things which in the end, work out to approx $9,016.80 a year

    Her countable income = $ 21,316.80 - $9,016.80 = $12,299
    If I am reading corrected her countable income has to be less than $12,681 which it is.
    Don't know if this applicable to her but I read medical expense must exceed 5% of the MAPR. ($12,681 x 5%) = $634 which hers does. Does this calculation relate to filing her application?

    Did I calculate this correctly??

    2. What would her benefit be each month?

    3. Also, at some point in the future, I am sure I am going to increase the number of days the Home health care aid comes to her house. I am taking care of her evenings and week ends after work but I am burning the candle at both ends. How can I ammend things later to include the change in days in home care?

    Thanks for any advice you can give :)
    Nicolle
     
  2. new57

    new57 Newbie

    Hi Nicole, and welcome to the forum.

    I was just as confused when i first started this process for my father.

    Basically you want to get your mothers countable income for VA purposes to ZERO. IF she is approved for a pension, she would then get the full amount.

    Anything above ZERO will result in a partial award.

    You get there with assisting living and/or home health care expenses; Medicare Part B & D premiums; Medicare Supplimental Insurance Policy premiums, etc.

    Prescriptions, and items like Depends will not be taken into account as a predicable recurring expense for the initial application.

    HTH and good luck.
     
  3. Nicolle

    Nicolle Newbie

    This helped immensely and I appreciate you taking the time to explain it to me:)
    I justed talked it over with mom and she will be paying me for the care I give her to reduce her countable income.
    From what I am reading, I am allowed to do this (of course at a lesser going rate than the current attendant we have coming in). I will keep a log of the checks and have her write a letter that I can include with the application stating that I am supplying her care for the day the other attendant isn't here.

    Boy, I hope i am going about this correctly!
     
  4. vbcoder

    vbcoder Jr. Member

    Nicolle;


    Unreimbursed prescribed medication, taken on a regular basis, is a medical deduction to lower her income.
     
  5. Nicolle

    Nicolle Newbie

    oh okay, thanks VBCoder! :)
     
  6. vbcoder

    vbcoder Jr. Member

    You're welcome. Depends are deductable as well..
     
  7. jpez

    jpez Full Member

    Nicolle,
    Having your mother pay you each month is the correct way to address the difference and get to ZERO.
    Look for a post by BJ (or MJ??) she created a short agreement that sher and her mother signed.

    THe VA has a form VARO 335/21P that is used to document the pay and duties.

    the form states:
    "NOTE: a family member may be consideered an in-home attendant only if he/she is actually being paid"
     
  8. Max

    Max Hero Member

    Jpez makes a good point. For many expenses, claiming the expense is proof enough for va, but if the claimant is paying a family member for in home care, they will request proof in the form of cancelled checks or bank statements. Another point is that VARO 335/21P is actually the routing code not a form for the St. Paul office. Unfortunately, VA does not have a form for these expenses. We used to use an informal form which I think is what jpez is citing, but because it was never formally approved by central office, we can no longer send it out and it is not on any of the VA form websites. Its best to just report when you started providing the care, the type of care you provide and a monthly or weekly amount you receive for providing this care. Make sure to sign it as the care provider and have the claimant sign it as well.

    Private message me with questions! :)
     
  9. Nicolle

    Nicolle Newbie

    aw thank guys!
    I will certainly look for that post jpez, thank you!

    And Max, thanks for the tip! I most definitely will not hesitate to pm you with questions. I am trying to read so much as not to bother anyone, but I am frantically trying to get this application out this week. I've spent way too long working on it just so it's perfect. What a weight off my shoulders this will be, once it's in the mail!
     
  10. Drew43920

    Drew43920 Newbie

    I am not an expert...........

    1. What am having a hard time with is calculating the financial portion to determine if she is eligable.
    ASSETS:
    She has $18,000 in a joint checking account with me but as far as I am concerned, this is HER money. That is all of her assets..not IRA, stocks etc. She pays rent on an apartment.
    **************************************************************
    Joint account may be 50/50 between you and her: so she has $9,000 ????
    A&A asset level is under $80,000.
    First apply for Pension then A&A.

    INCOME:
    A small pension from Macy's for $175.00 a month
    SSI - approx $876.40 month before Medicare deduction
    SBP from dad - $725.00 a month
    That totals approx $21,316.80 a year.

    MEDICAL EXPENSE:
    Medicare premium = 96.40 month
    Home attend twice a week = $592 a month
    Prescriptions - $55 / month
    ...and a few other little things which in the end, work out to approx $9,016.80 a year

    Her countable income = $ 21,316.80 - $9,016.80 = $12,299.
    ***************************************************************
    Have you paid yourself for helping ? There is a form for that.
    Your pay is deductible from her income
     
  11. Nicolle

    Nicolle Newbie

    As far as the bank account, maybe I mispoke in thinking it is a joint account. Her and I are listed on account; her name first, separated by the word "or", and then my name. I think if the word "and" were used to separate our names, it would be considered joint?? I'd have to look into that but it's kind of a mute point anyway since it is way under the $80k.


    And yes, I drafted up a letter than we both signed stating hours, rate of pay and what work I would peform to aid her in her daily activities. Pretty much followed the advice here on the forum. I am keeping a log of everything as well as copies of cancelled checks.
     
  12. laurellei

    laurellei Newbie

    Hi
    I'm hearing conflictin messages about the caregiver expense report. I've been told that although it's not required at the application, the VA will ask for it later. Does anyone know about this?
     
  13. Ktakacs

    Ktakacs Newbie

    I don't know what your own financial situation might be but keep in mind that if you are the care giver and are getting paid than I think you have claim that as income. Depending on your tax bracket that might present a hardship to you.
    This also presents a dilemna for those you secure home aides that they pay " under the table" so to speak. I don't know if the VA would ask for the caregiver's social security and report that to the IRS. I have friends who are doing this and are hestitiant to apply for A & A because they don't want to lose the home aide they have and don't want them to get in trouble with the IRS.
    Maybe an expert on this forum can address this issue because I think there may be a farily large group in this situation.
     

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