Question: I recently met with a couple where the husband is entitled to veterans’ benefits. I need advice about the benefits the couple could receive from the VA so I can design an appropriate long-term care (LTC) plan.
Answer: The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) pays for some long-term care services for veterans needing long-term care due to service-related disabilities and for those who do not have service-related disabilities but who need care and are unable to pay for the cost of necessary care.
This pension benefit can assist veterans, their spouses and widows or widowers to assure a level of income above the minimum subsistence level.
There are three program levels: Basic, Housebound, and Aid and Attendance (A&A).
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A&A assists veterans and their surviving spouses who require the help of another person to assist with activities of daily living (ADLs). It helps cover the cost of qualified non-reimbursed medical expenses, home care, assisted-living facility and nursing home care. In existence for decades, it is widely unknown and under-utilized.
These dollars are basically cash for whatever the needs are. Some recipients are using the money to pay a family member or friend for care. Here is a list of the benefits that can be provided: