Illinois and Missouri caregivers who help to provide care and support for an elderly loved one who is a veteran may be surprised to learn that the Veteran’s Administration has funding that can help, if they qualify. The Aid & Attendance Benefit is additional money that can be awarded on top of a veteran’s pension. It is to help finance senior care and medical expenses.
Aid & Attendance Benefit Eligibility
To be able to be considered for the Aid & Attendance benefit, a veteran must have served a minimum of ninety days of active military service with at least one day during a period of war. The VA currently defines wartime periods as:
- World War I (April 6, 1917 – November 11, 1918)
- World War II (December 7, 1941 – December 31, 1946)
- Korean conflict (June 27, 1950 – January 31, 1955)
- Vietnam era (February 28, 1961 – May 7, 1975 for Veterans who served in the Republic of Vietnam during that period; otherwise August 5, 1964 – May 7, 1975)
- Gulf War (August 2, 1990 – through a future date to be set by law or Presidential Proclamation)
The next hurdle a veteran must clear is to meet one of the following criteria:
- Require the aid of another person in order to perform personal functions required in everyday living, such as bathing, feeding, dressing, attending to the wants of nature, adjusting prosthetic devices, or protecting yourself from the hazards of your daily environment
- Are bedridden, in that their disability or disabilities requires them to remain in bed apart from any prescribed course of convalescence or treatment
- Are a patient in a nursing home due to mental or physical incapacity
- Have eyesight limited to a corrected 5/200 visual acuity or less in both eyes; or concentric contraction of the visual field to 5 degrees or less
Finally, a veteran’s yearly income and net worth must be within guidelines Congress establishes.