< Back to article

Applying for Veterans Benefits: 5 Tips for Caregivers and Spouses


I'm trying to find my husband's dd 214's and I just keep getting the run around he served from 1954 - 1963 during the Korean War. But never went overseas I have been told he's not considered a vet. I just wanted to find out if there were any benefit he was entitled to. Could someone please tell me.

my husband was in the Vietnam war and has died ...am I entitled to any life time benefits

Do these VA benefits for aging parents in need
also apply to Merchant Marines serving in the 1950's?

this is a very informative article :) thanks for this it is a light in my life

Dear Punnster, Thank you for your service.
You can google "Veteran Homes" to see if there is a facility in your area. VA Homes take a percentage of your income (&VA benefits if you have them) and are usually much less expensive than assisted living or board & care. But because of that, they usually have waiting lists. As a Korean vet, you would be given a high priority for admittance and even more so if you have a service-connected disability. You also want to talk to a VSO Veterans Service Officer with your county to be sure you get all the benefits you are entitled to. If that route is not helpful, a Medicaid county worker can help you with something helping you parttime in your home and a very few counties have assisted living with Medicaid waivers for lower rent. Be aware that trying to get VA and Medicaid at the same time is a paper chase. The best to you.

Caring for our handicapped son, our worries are, upon our demise,we often wonder if there will be a safe place for him to live. Hoping there are places for him to go to
that he could live out the rest of his his life with minimal help.

I'm 82, Korean vet and bit disabled. I'm living alone and can take care of most basic needs, but with some difficulty and risk. I have fallen and broken hip and have persistent knee problem. I have to use a walker. Have an equilibrium problem too.I am wondering about assisted living options.

Mecab, you need to go online to the VA site to see what regional office takes care of claims for your area. We live in the DC area and our claim went to the regional VFW office then sent on to Philly. The office that actually monitored the claim was out of Indianapolis and that is where I called to talk to people, that is where I called to let them know that my mother had passed away in March. Like I said to another person on this forum call the VA either just as they open in the morning EST or before Central time zone opens. The wait on hold is the shortest early in the morning or in the evening when Arizona day ends.

I need to know why my 90 year old father-in-law has applied for VA benefits for his assisted living and we have still not herd anything? It's been 3 months and my husband and I are paying 2750.00 every month for him to live there. The VA what is the problem? My father has been in every war and fought for this country so many times, he is a retired Veteran and went in at the age of 17, please explain why we have not heard anything? I can't wait to let the Senators and everyone else that will listen.


My mother was already in assisted living and we were spending down her savings quickly. There are limits as to how much a person can have to qualify, I was told under 40k. I did not know about the letter of intent to file and I did not do one. Since they had record of my inquiry to getting discharge papers back in 2012 ( I was thinking ahead) they started the file date on the date that I sent in my complete package in Aug. 2014. I waited 4 months before I called and was told that mom's file had not left the Philadelphia office still. I wrote a letter asking for expediency in her case due to dwindling funds, still nothing. May 2015, I called again and was told that I had filled out the form wrong. I had written N/A instead of 0's in the financial section. I down loaded another copy of that page and faxed it back, a lady called me and we completed the form online together. First check came in Aug. 2015 for Sept payment. I met with the field officer in Oct. to establish me as mom's fiduciary, opened a separate new bank account only for VA funds only in Dec. January 15, 2016 mom's retro payment was deposited. Mom passes away in March and I called to notify the VA and did not have to return funds which was good because I was able to use them for her funeral and Cemetary costs.
If you are applying for benefits from a vet who was her first marraige and your mother remarried a non vet she will not be qualified. Now if her second marraige was to a WW2 vet and she married him within 10 years of his discharge then she should qualify because of his service or if he was in the Korean War. The veteran must have served in a war zone to have earned this benefit, if they stayed stateside she would not qualify either.