Received Decision Letter

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Katmandu, Nov 20, 2007.

  1. Katmandu

    Katmandu Newbie

    Hello everyone: I am sitting here dumbstruck by the fact that we received a decision letter from the VA almost exactly 6 months from the date of our original filing. They are granting my mother's A&A and we should be receiving a check within 15 days.

    My sincerest gratitude goes out to everyone here that helped me thru this incredible maze. By using the expert advice on this forum I was able to file a complete application. I also wrote them a letter every 3 weeks just to let them know I wasn't letting them off the hook.

    Of course I have several questions concerning the approval letter.

    1. We filed May 20 2007 - the letter grants her pension effective June 1, 2006 (the date my father died). I don't understand this. Does anyone? Of course, I am not complaining but I'm not sure if they are paying her (back payments)from that date or the date they received our application (May 20, 2007)- I am not an uneducated person but it is very difficult to understand what they state in the letter.

    2. I am assuming the decision was based on my mom residing in an ALF at the time of application, however, the letter states: "you need the daily assistance of another person in performing routine activities. Entitlement to additional benefits because of the need for aid and attendance is therefore established effective June 1, 2006, the date of (my dad's) death. Medical evidence shows history of cerebrovascular acident with left side neuropathy. Wheelchair bound and no improvement expected. Also have symptoms of dementia." Can anyone explalin this to me?

    3. They did not require a fiduciary because my mom wasn't found to be incompetent - This is a good thing. . .

    Now - do I need to send them a letter letting them know my mom lives with me and I take care of her 24/7 with a little help from home health agency and she pays me for her care? How do I file the amendment now that a decsion has been made?

    I'm almost there!! Just need to get a few items straightened out and my mother will be all set. Thank you again for all your help.
     
  2. veteranadvocate

    veteranadvocate Full Member

    Congratulations.

    It pays to be persistent. I will try to address your questions. The first question is in regards to the effective date of payment. Since she filed within a year of the death of the veteran, the VA pays from the date of death. If a widow makes application after a year from the death then the effective date of the award is the date of application. (First of the following full month.)

    Second question is in regards to her entitlement for the additional amount because of the need for A&A. Medical evidence supports the need for assistance and qualification for A&A. The only difference here is the amount of unreimbursed medical expenses paid to the assisted living facility to off-set her countable income. You did not give any details on the amount approved and/or if medical expenses were taken into consideration.

    Glad to hear that they did not require a fiduciary. This will save a lot of record keeping for both of you.

    You will need to notify the VA about her change in status. You will also need to provide them with confirmation as to what she is paying you and any additional medical expenses. This could have an effect on the amount she will be entitle to, based on the income and expenses. This can be submitted on a VA form 21-4138 and signed by her.

    Keep in mind that she will receive an annual EVR form to submit her income and expenses. If the VA does not receive this form back within the stated time-frame her benefits will be suspended until they receive the EVR form.

    Glad everything worked out for you and your Mother. I am sure both of you will have more to be thankful for this Thanksgiving Day.
     

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