The Department of Veterans Affairs offers a relatively unknown pension benefit called “Aid & Attendance” that helps offset the cost of living for disabled veterans who can’t work, or surviving spouses who require long-term care.
The reason for designating Aid & Attendance as a pension benefit is that many veterans or their single surviving spouses can be eligible for these funds in addition to previously earned post-service pensions. It is for veterans and spouses who have disabilities that require the aid and attendance of a caregiver or are housebound.
Through this benefit, an increased monthly amount will be added to monthly pension amount when a veteran, his or her spouse, or both are confined to home because of permanent disability.
Task & Purpose previously reported on a stipend benefit for caregivers of Post-9/11 disabled veterans — the Caregiver Support program — but the Aid & Attendance benefit is more inclusive of veterans from all conflicts.
Those wishing to be approved for Aid & Attendance may have one or more issues including requiring the aid of another person in order to perform personal functions required in everyday living, being bedridden, residing in a nursing home due to mental or physical incapacity, or having eyesight that is limited to a corrected 5/200 visual acuity or less in both eyes or concentric contraction of the visual field to five degrees or less.
In order to determine eligibility, veterans, their spouses, or caregivers can contact their in-state Pension Management Center, which will then evaluate the situation and determine the additional pension amount that is available. Often the local VA in charge will require a thorough physician-performed assessment of the veteran or spouse’s disability, and how it impacts daily life.
The money can be used to pay for a number of things, including in-home care, assisted living, nursing home care, medical expenses, or prescriptions.
The original VA pension program was established in 1952, and provides a tax-free monthly income of $1,949 for a veteran and a spouse, $1,644 for a single veteran, $1,056 for a single surviving spouse, or $1,291 for a healthy veteran whose spouse requires care. In terms of annual income, couples can receive roughly $25,000 a year while surviving spouses of veterans are eligible to receive up to $13,560.
Veterans eligible for pension programs must have served 90 days on active duty, with one of those occurring during wartime. They must also received a discharge that is other than “dishonorable.”
Overall, the addition of the Aid & Attendance pension can offset a significant portion of long-term care costs associated with permanent disability.
Benjamin Franklin nailed it when he said, "Fatigue is the best pillow." True story, Benny. There's nothing like pushing your body so far past exhaustion that you'd willingly, even longingly, take a nap on a concrete slab.
Former President George W. Bush is calling for an end to the partial government shutdown, which is about to hit the one-month mark and is currently the longest shutdown in US history.
In an appeal made on Instagram, the 43rd president called on "leaders on both sides to put politics aside, come together, and end this shutdown." The caption was posted with an image of him and former First Lady Laura Bush giving pizza to their Secret Service detail.
Staff Sgt. Daniel Christopher Evans was arrested on Jan. 29, 2018. (Photo courtesy of Wilmington Police Department, North Carolina.)
A special operations Marine is due in court on March 7 after being arrested last year for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend, Task & Purpose has learned.
Staff Sgt. Daniel Christopher Evans was arrested and charged with assault inflicting serious injury on July 29, 2018, according to Jennifer Dandron, a spokeswoman for police in Wilmington, North Carolina. Evans is currently assigned as a Critical Skills Operator with the 2nd Marine Raider Battalion at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, according to the Marine Corps Personnel Locator.
U.S. Army 1st Lt. Elyse Ping Medvigy conducts a call-for-fire during an artillery shoot south of Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, Aug. 22, 2014. Medvigy, a fire support officer assigned to the 4th Infantry Division's Company D, 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, is the first female company fire support officer to serve in an infantry brigade combat team supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Whitney Houston (Photo by U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Whitney Houston)
Following Trump's inauguration, some supporters of ground combat integration assumed he would quickly move to reinstate a ban on women in jobs like the infantry. When this did not happen, advocates breathed a collective sigh of relief, and hundreds of qualified women charted a course in history by entering the newly opened occupational fields.
So earlier this week when the Wall Street Journal published an editorial against women in ground combat by conservative political commentator Heather Mac Donald, the inclination of many ground combat integration supporters was to dismiss it outright. But given Trump's proclivity to make knee jerk policy decisions in response to falling approval ratings and the court's tradition of deference to the military when it comes to policies affecting good order and discipline, it would be unwise to assume the 2016 lifting of the ban on women in ground combat is a done deal.