When it comes to the VA Aid & Attendance (more accurately called the Pension Benefit program), the VA may be keeping a secret! We know they aren't doing it on purpose, but we also know that many of the vets who are eligible for it aren't using what's available. Here are a couple of things to know, so please pass this on to any vets or spouses who may need the info:
First, vets just don’t know about it, haven’t heard about, don’t know someone who is using it. It seems that each vet upon separation from the military should be educated on this possibility and then again any time he or she revisits a VA facility for medical or other help, especially as he or she reaches age 65. We know that the VA is huge (230,000 employees) but our homeless and destitute vets deserve our best efforts. And all vets have paid dearly for this help. The VA should be educating everybody they possibly can about the VA Aid & Attendance.
Second, even when they know about the benefit it’s just so difficult dealing with the VA, many just don’t bother. The forms themselves can be overwhelming. The process of gathering the information is daunting. Then trying to deal with the personnel at the VA is exasperating. There are more than 230,000 employees and anytime you have a question, you will call in and wait for a long time just to talk to someone you will not be able to talk to again. This process can be difficult for our team and is almost impossible for an older vet or widow.
Third, many vets don’t think they deserve the benefit and want to preserve it for someone who needs it more than they do. First of all, they served. They put their life on hold to serve this country. They’ve earned this benefit and so much more. Second, the VA budget process is mandatory for the pension benefit program. This means that a good chunk of money (much more than is used) is set aside each year to fund this benefit. What I’m trying to say, there is no need to save it for someone who is more deserving. They’ll be taken care of too.
So if you’re a vet, the surviving spouse of a vet, child of a vet, friend of a vet, neighbor of a vet, caretaker of a vet, just happen to know a vet, then you need to get educated on the Pension Benefit or Aid & Attendance program and make sure the vet you know is taken care of. If you need more information, contact us today!