VA Benefit Changes are on the Way – Stay Tuned

In June, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) announced that changes are being drafted to the laws regarding qualification for the VA pension benefit, commonly called the “Aid & Attendance” benefit.  The Aid and Attendance benefit provides a monthly check to veterans and widow/ers of veterans who have long-term care needs at home, in assisted living, or in skilled nursing care.  Currently, the VA regulations do not impose a look-back period, unlike Medicaid.  Due to an investigation into the sale of annuities by financial advisers and the use of certain trusts by attorneys, the laws are being re-written and will likely impose a look-back similar to Medicaid.  The new laws are scheduled to be released toward the end of 2013.  The Medicaid look-back is currently five years, and it is speculated that the proposed look-back for VA might mirror the 5 year Medicaid period.

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