Obtaining additional support from the VA through the Aid & Attendance benefit
Arizona Veterans with medical issues may qualify for a greater level of assistance than other veterans. This assistance, known as Aid & Attendance or Housebound benefits, effectively increases the Pension amount that a veteran may receive each month. To qualify for one of these benefits, a veteran must demonstrate not only the financial need for Pension, but also a medical issue that necessitates additional support. Those who qualify may receive additional support from either the Aid & Attendance benefit or the Housebound benefit, but cannot receive both simultaneously. Of the two benefits, Aid & Attendance pays veterans the most, and it is the most difficult to qualify for.
Qualifying for the Aid & Attendance benefit
In addition to qualifying for Pension, veterans must satisfy certain medical conditions to receive the Aid & Attendance benefit in Arizona. Specifically, veterans must:
- Require another person’s assistance to perform activities of daily living, such as bathing, feeding and dressing, OR
- Be bedridden, OR
- Be in an Assisted Living Facility or Nursing Home due to mental or physical incapacity, OR
- Suffer from blindness.
By satisfying one of these requirements and qualifying for the Aid & Attendance benefit, a veteran may be eligible for a significant increase in his Pension amount. Veterans should work with an Arizona veterans benefit attorney to determine whether they are eligible for this additional benefit.
Qualifying for the Housebound benefit
As with the Aid & Attendance benefit, the first step towards qualifying for the Housebound benefit is qualifying for Pension. In addition to meeting Pension’s financial requirements, veterans must also meet one of the following
requirements to receive the Housebound benefit:
- Have a single permanent disability that is 100% disabling and confines him to his immediate premises, OR
- Have a single permanent disability that is 100% disabling and another disability or disabilities that is 60% disabling.
Veterans who satisfy one of these requirements may be able to qualify for the Housebound benefit and thus increase their Pension amount. Veterans should work with an Arizona benefits planning attorney to make sure they apply for and receive the maximum benefit possible.
Applying for the Aid & Attendance or Housebound benefit
Veterans can work with an AZ veterans benefit lawyer to apply for Aid & Attendance or Household benefit when they first apply for Pension, or at any time thereafter if their health deteriorates after their Pension payments have begun.
When applying for one of these Veteran’s Administration benefits, veterans need to provide a written report from their physician that thoroughly describes their medical condition. The report should clearly illustrate the veteran’s difficulty tending to activities of daily living, as well as describe mobility issues that the veteran may have. When applying for one of these benefits, veterans may want to involve a veteran’s benefit lawyer who can fully explain what the Veterans Administration looks for in a physician’s report.