The 3 M’s to VA Pension Qualification™

The 3 M’s to VA Pension Qualification™

All too often, veterans or their surviving spouses are told they do not qualify for VA Aid and Attendance when they do.

 The truth is you may be eligible for benefits to help pay for needed extended care long term care if you meet “The 3 M’s to VA Pension Qualification™”.

Here they are the three ms:

1st M: Military service: A veteran must have 90 days of active duty (¥),  with at least one day during a period of war, and an honorable discharge.

The periods of war are:

  • World War II: 12/07/1941 to 12/31/1946
  • the Korean War: 06/27/1950 to 01/31/1955
  • the Vietnam War: 08/05/1964 to 05/07/1975
    (If you served in the country of Vietnam from 02/28/1961 you also qualify for VA Pension with aid and attendance)
  • (¥) the Gulf War. 08/02/1990 to present (Gulf War veterans must have two years of active duty to qualify rather then just 90 days.)

2nd M : Medical need: A claimant must need the assistance of another individual with at least two activities of daily living – ADLs.

These activities of daily living included are bathing, dressing, ambulating, walking,  toileting and eating. 

For example, someone with dementia may simply need daily reminders to eat and bathe, and so would qualify.

Bathing can be stand-by assistance.

Need help with Grooming can help trigger the benefits.

Medication Management is also a trigger an can count as one ADL, if a congnative impairment is present.

Homebound and total blindness is also a trigger for Aid and Attendance.

3rd M: Money – Income and Assets

What are the income and asset limits?

The VA calls the income and asset limit the asset, “Bright-Line Limit.

The VA takes both net income plus assets to arrive at the bright-line limit, the VA Aid and Attendance income limit.

The VA Aid and Attendance income limit or bright-line limit for 2022 is $138,488.

Veterans Pension Secret #1

Income is offset by unreimbursed medical expenses.

In order to qualify for the FULL VA Aid and Attendance benefit a claimant’s income must be less than the cost of care. For instance, someone has a monthly income of $3,000 per month but the cost of care in an assisted living community is $4,500 per month, leaving $1,500 negative per month. This claimant would qualify for the full monthly benefit of $2,431 if a married veteran, $2,050 if a single veteran, and a surviving spouse would qualify for $1,318.