How elder law affects benefits for veterans and their spouses

With 9.3 million veterans in the U.S.A over the age of 65 and 3.6 million veterans with service related disabilities, it’s more important than ever that all veterans are aware of the benefits that they and their dependents are entitled to. As elder law attorneys in New Jersey, we are providing a guide to the benefits that disabled and elderly veterans can access:

  • The Aid & Attendance Pension – This money-based benefit is available to veterans who have served during wartime or their surviving spouses, providing that certain qualification criteria are met. Firstly, your monthly medical expenses must exceed monthly income and the total value of your assets must be less than $80,000, excluding the value of your home. Lastly, the applicant must also require care for completing daily tasks like eating, bathing and so forth. It is important to check if you qualify for this pension as you may be able to receive it even if you are above the limit for a VA pension, providing your medical expenses qualify.
  • Long-term care services – There are a number of long-term care services offered through the Veterans Administration, including geriatric evaluation, adult day health care (A therapeutic and rehabilitation day program), respite care (Inpatient and outpatient support for caregivers), home care (Physical therapy, nursing, daily care and more) and palliative care for terminally ill veterans and their families. Nursing home care is prioritized for veterans with service related disabilities and a domiciliary care option is provided for low-income disabled veterans.
  •  IRS benefits – As a veteran, you may qualify for several benefits and tax considerations from the IRS, including the exclusion of benefits from the VA from your gross income and refundable federal income tax credits under the Earned Income Tax Credit.
  • State of New Jersey benefits – The New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs offers a separate set of benefits to those offered by the Federal government. These include access to long-term care at Veterans Memorial Homes for disabled or elderly veterans, income tax exclusions for military pensions and survivors benefit payments, property tax exemptions and deductions for eligible veterans and surviving spouses and free internment in the Brigadier General William C. Doyle Veterans Memorial Cemetery for veterans, their spouses and dependent children. There are also subsidies for adult day programs and free transportation to VA medical centers, Veterans Service Offices, local hospitals and private doctors.

Navigating the legal criteria in order to qualify for benefits can be complex and time-consuming. At Sedita, Campisano & Campisano, LLC, we have considerable experience working with veterans and their families to get the benefits and care that they are entitled to. To find out more about our services or speak to an elder law attorney, please contact us today. 

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