If you are a veteran or the spouse of a veteran, there are many benefits and resources available to help you find an assisted living community in North Carolina. The Veterans Administration (VA) provides assistance that can cover a portion of your monthly rent and other costs. Here’s what you need to know about applying for these extra benefits:
Who Is Eligible For VA Benefits?
If you served during wartime, if you were discharged for a service-related disability, or if your discharge was related to an injury sustained while in the military, then you may be eligible for VA benefits. The following are some examples of eligible people:
- If you were injured during active duty and were later honorably discharged from the military due to that injury.
- If there’s evidence that a service-related injury or disease caused your permanent and total disability.
- If there is proof that the cause of any medical condition is related to your time in service.
How Does The VA Determine Eligibility For Assisted Living?
The VA will consider your income, net worth, and other assets to determine assisted living eligibility. It is important to understand that the VA only pays for some of your costs. You are responsible for paying a portion of the bill after you have met your deductible.
The VA determines your eligibility based on your net worth and income. For example, if you make $2,000 per month and have $5,000 in assets (which includes things like bank accounts), then you would be eligible for benefits—because $7,000 ($2K + $5K) is less than 50% of what you earn per year ($14K).
What Kinds Of Benefits Are Available?
There are many benefits available to veterans and their families, including:
- Aid and Attendance. This is a monthly cash benefit. It can be paid for a veteran living in an assisted living home or nursing home (a nursing home is not necessary for this benefit) who needs extensive help with activities of daily living such as eating, bathing, dressing, toileting, and transferring from bed or chair to wheelchair. The veteran must also need help performing at least two self-care tasks that cannot be accomplished without assistance from another person (such as feeding oneself or dressing). You must have been entitled to receive military retired pay prior to becoming eligible for this program.
- This is similar to Aid & Attendance, except it does not require payment of retirement pay or any care outside the house; however, you must be confined at home due to your inability to leave due to illness or disability.
- Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC): This income-based program provides monthly payments to eligible dependents whose parent or spouse died while serving in the military.
- Pension: A monthly payment made to veterans who were disabled by their service-related injuries and were discharged under other than dishonorable conditions. Veterans must have served 90 days or more on active duty, 30 continuous days during wartime, or any period during which they were hospitalized at a Department of Veterans Affairs facility due to their wartime injury or illness.
- Survivor Benefits: If you are eligible for this program based on your relationship with someone who died while serving in active duty during wartime or active duty for training purposes outside combat zones (with some exceptions), then you may qualify for these benefits.
How To Find An Assisted Living Facility That Accepts Veterans Benefits
Once you’ve narrowed your choices with the above criteria, it’s time to check out the communities. Make sure they are close enough to family and friends that they can visit often. The VA also recommends checking out each community before making a final decision. If possible, ask if any of their residents are veterans, as well as how many team members on their team have experience working with veterans.