Aid and attendance question; Is it worth appealing the VA decision?

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Recently found out about the aid and attendance option for my grandmom... grandfather was an army vet. I sent in the paperwork and after several months got a response ~ it was denied. The VA cited that she ‘makes too much money’ (...she was a government employee for over 30 years) But in reality she’s only $500.00 over the limit. My grandfather had colon cancer (which took his life in the end) ~ VA also said that his cancer was not the cause of his discharge so he wouldn’t be eligible. However, they did say that we could appeal the decision if she needed more care (severely declining health I assume) and it was medically documented. For my weekday job, I have grandmom in a senior center ~ more interaction than anything. She gets to be around other seniors and have a good time while I’m at work. She does have some forgetfulness (definitely not full blown dementia) but nothing major. She’s not a wanderer. She tends to go with the flow, with whatever the situation may be. The Senior Care staff have told me Gran is a very easy going person ~ even without her hearing (genetic hearing loss - hearing aid doesn’t do much...but she can still hear, but not too well). As long as she has her word search book (or any book to read for that matter), she’s content. Her family doctor filled out the health history paperwork. He seemed to think that financially may be an issue but the fact she’s 96 may even things out, in her favor. Is it worth appealing the VA decision? Or should I just let it go and reapply in the future (they did say that I had the option to reapply in the future if desired)? I do try to keep her children informed (after all, it is their mother) but due to the nature of it...not so sure. Her youngest son (his ‘girlfriend’) can be an issue. The girlfriend is quite the gold digger and has tried to put grandmom in a nursing home in the past. The gold digger even called APS earlier in the year (thinking she’d get her into a nursing home, making sure I’m homeless).

Answers 1 to 4 of 4
If her income is over the limit, it doesn't matter if it's $1 or $500. Aid & attendance is for veterans (or spouse) who are financially needy, and Grandma isn't. If her care costs increase significantly (such as moving to a nursing home or some other care facilities) then she will likely qualify (because her costs are higher).
And tell the gold digger that if Grandma goes into a nursing home, there won't be anything left over. Medicaid will typically apply a lien to the house for however much they contribute to Grandma's care.
My perfect dream ~ would love to tell the gold digger off/dash her hopes. But since she’s so unstable, my life may be in jeopardy (...yup, she’s threatened me with physical harm multiple times thru the years). Recently found out that my uncle got a brand new 2017 RAV4. Can only imagine what the monthly payments are on it. He is also a government worker and the gold digger doesn’t work/hasn’t met a payroll in at least 20 years, if not longer. Since he’s the only one bringing in a paycheck, can only imagine how strapped for cash he is... Wouldn’t put it past her to try and call APS again with more of her lies (even more so now, since they have a brand new suv). Good to know though :)

Trying to keep grandmom off of Medicaid for as long as possible though. She’s got government coverage (not Medicaid) and it’s paid for everything she’s ever needed - heck, her prescriptions, I can pay for them in pennies. No way am I giving that up...unless something catastrophic happens. Though I do realize that she may need it down the line (will deal with it then). I’ve read (on this site) that there’s a Medicaid waiver that can be filled out ~ so I wouldn’t lose the house. Plus I’ve promised grandmom that I wouldn’t put her in a home unless it was absolutely medically necessary.
Top Answer
Midnight - did you have a VA benefits volunteer help with the application? If not, I’d get them to help do the appeal. If it’s another no, ok then but you really tried.

About the house, it’s the caregiver exemption to MERP Estate Recovery. But there are all sorts of other Recovery exemptions as wells a required cost benefit analysis. You can start to look into it now so you have some idea of what’s what should things change and she needs to go into a facility & apply for Medicaid.

I’d be concerned that what you are hoping will happen may not be quiet as planned......
So gran has a valid will?
& within her will you or another trusted family member is executor and you alone are the beneficiary of grans Estate (her home)?
Gran owns the house outright & it’s in her name alone?
You are her dpoa & mpoa and have nice notarized paperwork that shows that?
So you live in grans house but have a full time job?
Gran does not pay you to caregive?
Have you personally payed any of the house costs?
Has gran perhaps written checks to you or gran gotten cash from her account that were for over $200 / $250 in the past few years?
The senior center she goes to, do you know how it’s funded? Is it perhaps a PACE program? Or other governmental senior program?
Not trying to be nosy but the answers to the above will make a big difference as to Medicaid and settlement of her estate.

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