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Understanding VA Benefits for Long-Term Care – Part 1

Support for older adults, particularly veterans, involves significant costs. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) in the U.S. provides distinct benefits for military veterans and their partners. Key among these benefits is the Aid and Attendance and Housebound benefits, designed to alleviate the financial burden associated with long-term care.

Bridging the Awareness Gap

A significant issue is the need for veterans to be more aware of these benefits, which can lead to unnecessary financial strain. Utah Senior Care Advisors play a crucial role in addressing this gap by assisting veterans in understanding the landscape of senior care and housing options and highlighting the benefits to which they are entitled but may not realize.

This document details the VA benefits, eligibility criteria, the types of benefits available for long-term care expenses, and how to access these benefits. The objective is to empower veterans and their families with knowledge to make well-informed decisions.

Who is Eligible?

Eligible individuals for VA benefits include veterans with disabilities or illnesses, those who served during war times, veterans exposed to harmful substances, other veterans, and the spouses, children, and dependents of veterans.

Eligibility for VA long-term care benefits varies based on the specific program applied for. Criteria may encompass military service history, active duty duration, age, wartime service details, discharge status, the need for daily living assistance, clinical assessments, financial need, mental or physical disabilities, and the status of surviving family members.

Following VA regulations, applicants must also meet conduct standards and avoid disqualifications such as desertion, conscientious objection, or unauthorized absence.

Types of Benefits

Veterans’ benefits cover a range of programs to help with long-term care costs. These include the VA pension, aid and attendance benefits, housebound allowance, and more. The Aid and Attendance benefit is great for helping seniors with their monthly living costs, even if they live in private senior communities. Our partners at Senior Care Associates can help you navigate this part of the journey so you can take advantage of all the benefits you deserve.

How much help each person gets from these benefits can vary. It depends on things like the VA Pension amount, which changes from one person to another based on different rules. It’s vital to figure out which programs your loved one can use so you know what help they can get.  

Here are some VA programs that help a lot of senior veterans and their families live

better:

  • VA Pension and Survivors Pension:  Provides monthly payments to wartime veterans and their surviving family members who qualify based on their finances. The amount of money they can get changes every year and depends on their family income and net worth.
  • Aid and Attendance: This is paid in addition to the amount of the monthly VA Pension. This program provides additional tax-free income to veterans and their surviving spouses who need care at home or in a senior living facility because of disabilities or needing help with daily activities. It adds to the VA Pension or Survivors’ Pension to help cover the cost of care and living.
  • Housebound Allowance:  This is paid in addition to the amount of the monthly VA Pension. This is for veterans and their dependents who have permanent disabilities and spend most of their time at home. It helps pay for needs at home or to get to medical appointments.   
  • VA Disability Compensation:  Veterans with illnesses or injuries from their service can get this support, which isn’t based on income. They can use this money however they like, including living expenses as they age.  
  • VA Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC):  If veterans die because of their service, their surviving family members can get tax-free monthly payments. This money can help with lots of different expenses, like long-term care.  
  • VA Health Care:  Veterans signed up for VA Health Care can get long-term care services like physical therapy, nursing care, and help with daily activities. These can be at VA places or through community providers.  
  • VA Community Living Centers:  The VA runs nursing homes that offer care, mental health help, and dementia care for qualified veterans. It’s not free, but it’s usually less expensive for veterans.  
  • VA State Home Per Diem Program:  Veterans can stay in State Veterans Homes and get help paying for their care through this program. The VA pays part of the cost, but there might be extra fees. Also, care for non-veteran spouses or Gold Star parents might be limited.

Contact Utah Senior Care 

Are you a veteran, or do you have a loved one who served? Don’t miss out on the benefits you deserve. Contact Utah Senior Care Advisors today to learn more about VA benefits and how we can assist you in accessing the support you need for long-term care.

Choose Salt Lake City Senior Care Advisors

Our advisors have the most experience helping families find senior care in Utah. We use our years of assisted living management knowledge to match you with the perfect community for your loved one. We’ll tour communities with you to ensure all your important questions are answered, and you’re getting a fair price. Contact us today to get started!