VA benefits in community nursing homes

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Does anyone have information on the possibilities of the VA paying for a veteran's nursing home costs at a community nursing home, rather than a more distant VA nursing home?


VA Aid and Attendance Benefit will pay approx 1600.00 a month towards care for a Veteran for Home Care through Nursing Home care. A Little Known Financial Resource for Veterans
Helpful Information about VA Aid and Attendance

Unfortunately, many folks are unaware of the VA Aid and Attendance benefit for veterans and surviving spouses. The benefit applies to veterans and surviving spouses who require the regular attendance of another person to assist in bathing, dressing, meal preparation, medication monitoring or other various activities of daily living. This benefit is available to individuals who reside in assisted living communities, personal care homes, skilled nursing facilities and those receiving personal in-home care.

How can these benefits help someone?
Aid and Attendance can help pay for care in the home, skilled nursing facility, personal care home or an assisted living community. A veteran may be eligible for up to $1644/month, while the surviving spouse of a veteran may be eligible for up to $1057/month. A married couple may be eligible for up to $1950/month.

Who is Eligible?
Any War Veteran with 90 days of active duty with at least one day during active War time is eligible for this benefit. A surviving spouse of a War Veteran may be eligible if married at the time of death. The individual must qualify both medically and financially. They must require the assistance of another person on a daily basis. Also, the Veteran or Surviving Spouse must have an income under a certain amount; however, there are some medical expenses that can be used to reduce the countable income to within the guidelines that the VA has established. Assets cannot exceed eighty thousand dollars however, some things, including their home, vehicle, pre-paid funeral expenses and some other items may be exempt. For further information regarding financial qualifications, consider seeking the professional advice of an attorney or financial planner.

Eligibility dates are:

o 4/21/1898 - 7/15/1903
o 5/9/1916 - 11/11/1918
o 12/07/1941 - 12/31/1946
o 6/27/1950 - 1/31/1955
o 8/5/1964 - 5/7/1975
o 8/20/1990 - present

How do I apply for this benefit?
There are two ways to apply for this benefit. Some communities partner with companies that provide consulting to the veteran and their family throughout the entire application process. Ask the community you are touring if they can refer you to someone who can assist with the application process. You may also apply by contacting your Regional Veteran’s Administration Office. To locate the closest regional office to you, visit the VA website at

How quickly would I receive the benefit?
The time frame is determined by the accuracy of the initial application. The average process takes between 4-6 months. However, the VA does pay retroactively to the month after the application was received. The resident is paid directly from the VA. This program financially assists the resident with paying their monthly rent, care and/or services.
3930 helpful answers
What can I say? Thank you Heidi. There are others on the site that have used this benefit.
Heidi D. You have extensive knowledge about the benefit known as Aid and Attendance for veterans and their surviving spouses. However, you may not realize that it is difficult to QUALIFY. Most vets that I know did not qualify for this important benefit because their total assets (they look at everything) put them over the top for Aid. It is unfortunate because this should be available to ALL VETERANS, especially to those who served.. If you're willing to WAIT and you have someone knowledgeable helping you with the paperwork, I'd say go for it.
p.s. I'm really impressed with your research.
It does alot of time and effort but with help of the local American Legion it may be worth the challenge. And it is retroactive back to the filing date so some communities will allow some kind of credit until it is approved. It is a DAUNTING process!
Don't be discouraged by the paperwork...I did it on my own and my mother is currently receiving $1056 a month. It did take some time and effort my part...I didn't have my dad's seperation papers, so I had to request those from the VA, but it wasn't that difficult. There are several useful websites and many of the facilities that you may be considering have information nights that will help you with resources for filling out the forms. I have not paid one cent for help in doing this.
I recently looked into VA benefits but I didn't get the exact same info. I just need to clarify a couple of things so I understand. Fortunately I found my dad's seperation papers in the stack my mom gave me to burn. She had no idea there were any benefits. So I would first encourage everyone to find their parents paperwork and double check service dates.
The information I was given was my mom would qualify for 11 hours of care a week, but her assests had to be less than 25k. I was told there is no "look back" with VA.
My mom requires 24/7 care, assistance with all ADL's and could not transfer herself in case of emergency (pathway to safety).
Is there a cash benefit per month or $1057 given to pay for caretaking? Thanks for your time.
Something to keep in mind with the assets---since I am my mom's power of attorney, I was added as a joint account holder on her bank account. Thus, when listing her assets, we only had to include half of her account balance in the total. Check with your attorney to verify.
I am just starting the process on my own - was almost scammed into an estate planner in vero beach, Florida, charging $500 to do it,but checked first with my Mom's trust attorney and she advised me that if you have a trust attorney, the help of the estate planner is just duplicating what the attorney is already doing! Use caution! I plan on completing the forms, getting advise from my local VA office and plodding on. I guess the biggest hurdle is when your parent(s) have more than the $80,000 in assets and you don't know what to do to get down to that point short of withdrawing money which is not right and probably not legal. Remember, it should cost you nothing besides your time to go through the process. Will post back as I move along.
Marty - I hope your last comment will help me and my brother - we both hold durable power of attorney and are co-trustees. If we could show mom has 1/3 of her assets, I think she will qualify. Will let you know what happens
Yes, the VA has contracts with several nursing homes throughout maine.
For example, Marshwood ReHab center located on Roger St. Lewiston.
I'm looking for the others names of Community Nurshing Homes contracted by the VA in Maine.

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