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VA Aid and Attendance Benefit and How it Can Help Pay for Senior Living

Congratulations on the great life waiting for you at the senior living community. You’ll soon be making your home in a private residence, receiving support for your independent lifestyle, enjoying activities and amenities to help keep you engaged and relishing the many opportunities to meet and make new friends. 

As you look forward to your future, you may now be researching the different options available to fund your new senior living adventure.   

There are several resources available, but if you or a loved one are a Veteran or the surviving spouse of a Veteran, there may be VA benefits for senior living you’ll want to explore. 

VA benefit for senior living: The Veterans Aid and Attendance Benefit 

The Aid and Attendance Benefit program provides a monthly payment to qualifying Veterans or their survivors. In order to be eligible for this VA benefit for senior living, you will need to meet the requirements of at least one of the following: 

1. Help is needed to perform activities of daily living 

2. A disability or illness requires you to stay mostly in bed 

3. You live in a nursing home due to a mental or physical incapacity related to a disability 

4. Your corrected visual acuity is 5/200 or less in both eyes 

5. Your concentric contraction of the visual field is 5 degrees or less 

Military service requirements 

To qualify for this VA benefit for senior living, you will need to meet the following military service requirements: 

1. There must not be a dishonorable discharge 

2. The Veteran must have served on active duty before September 8, 1980 for at least 90 days, with at least one day during wartime or served on active duty after September 7, 1980 for 24 months, with at least one day during wartime. 

Financial requirements 

The individual will need to establish eligibility for the basic VA pension. However, the Aid and Attendance benefit is based on a higher income limit so if you are not eligible for the basic pension, you may still qualify for the increased pension benefits. 

There are restrictions regarding the individual’s financial status, including not exceeding the limit that has been set for net worth. Excluded from this number is the value of the person’s car, personal effects and primary residence. It should be noted that there is a three-year lookback period that will determine if any assets were gifted or sold below market value in an attempt to reduce a person’s net worth. If this is found, benefits can be denied or delayed. 

Surviving spouse qualifications 

If you are the surviving spouse of a qualified Veteran, you may be eligible for the VA Survivors Pension if the Veteran met the above service requirements, didn’t receive a dishonorable discharge and you haven’t remarried after the Veteran’s death. You will also need to meet the income and net worth limits set, minus your house, car and personal effects. 

Additional VA benefit resources 

Visit the following websites if you’d like more information on Veterans or survivor pensions and benefits: 

Aid and Attendance benefits  

Veterans pension 

Survivors pension 

Life at a Milestone Community 

If you’re looking at options for retirement living, we invite your family to visit one of our Milestone communities – designed to support your loved ones to live their highest quality of life. 

We offer studio and one-bedroom private apartments for our assisted living residents as well as private or shared memory care suites for those living with Alzheimer’s or dementia. 

Our memory care residents are cared for by our compassionate and specially trained team – who meet them wherever they are in their journey with patience and kindness. The residents also have access to customized activities, programs and an elevated secured courtyard. 

Our amenities and services encourage our residents in assisted living to engage with others, remain as independent as possible and be reassured that help is available whenever needed. 

In addition to our personalized services, we offer: 

If your family is considering retirement living, we hope you will visit one of our communities. We are a trusted resource and are here to answer any questions. Please contact us with any questions you may have or to arrange a personal tour.