Filed all the paperwork and just received notice that my dad will receive $200 a month because he needs full time care. I ( daughter now living with him) can’t survive on $200 a month, I have a p/t job and leave him alone 6 am to 12:30pm. It’s not going well, he is not eating even though I leave prepared meals for him. He has fallen at least once a week while I am gone. He tried to cook some oatmeal and left a gas burner on for 4 hrs... I’m so stressed at work and the minute I get home I start in with caregiving. I’m exhausted. How can the VA think full time care giving is worth $50 a week?

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Qualifying financially for VA Improved Pension with Aid and Attendance requires that asset and income tests be met. Unfortunately, the VA does not provide "red line" asset and income limits and instead uses formulas.
To qualify for the maximum award, GROSS household income from all sources (including that of the spouse if married) must be totally consumed by Unreimbursed Medical Expenses ("UME") which may include payments made to a family caregiver (other than the spouse). Payments to a caregiver must be evidenced (copies of cashed checks) and an affidavit signed by both the caregiver and the care recipient indicating the type of care being provided, the frequency of the care, and the amount of compensation must be submitted. As a previous poster suggested, payments for care to a family member may cause an issue with Medicaid eligibility and a properly drafted agreement between the family caregiver and the person providing care is recommended.
There is no stipulated asset limit although many will incorrectly state that there is a limit of $50,000 for an individual and $80,000 for a couple. These numbers only apply to VA internal processing and have nothing to do with qualification. In determining an "asset limit" the VA looks at the family's "gross estate" (essentially everything except the homestead residence, automobile and personal effects) and asks the following question: "If the gross estate is divided by life expectancy, will the result cover reported unreimbursed medical expenses for the life of the claimant?". If the answer is "yes", no award. If the answer is "no" an award may be granted.
Other matters:
A partial award may be granted which seems to be the case here.
Awards can be increased upon new evidence.
Do not file an "appeal". The first step in adjusting or contesting a claim is to submit new evidence based on the original application. The next step would be the filing of a "Notice of Disagreement". The final step would be filing a formal Appeal. The last two take forever and you are better off filing a new claim. Once the new claim is filed and approved the claimant can seek benefits they may be entitled to for the previous 12 months.
Getting help with claims:
No-cost help with VA applications can be obtained at the federal, state and local level. It has been my experience that as well intentioned as those who staff these institutions and organizations may be, they cannot (or will not due to their mission) be able to help those who have but the simplest claims. Moreover, virtually none of them have expertise with respect to coordinating VA benefits with Medicaid. There can be tremendous value in seeking professional help when appropriate.
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Call them and tell them all that is going on. My dad had 6 hours a day paid in full. The caregiver agency was the one I was using so it worked out good. I had to keep calling and updating the gal as my dad became more ill. I hope you can get this worked out.
Helpful Answer (7)

Look into a program called VIP
I think it is Veterans Independence Program or it might be Veterans In Place.
They will assess the Veteran and come up with a "budget" you will then be able to take this money and be able to provide care.
You can use it for paying for caregivers. (and since you are not a spouse you could be a paid caregiver.)
You can use it to have a lawn service, house cleaners, just to name a few.
The drawback is, at least while my Husband was on the program, I had to hire caregivers myself I could not go through an agency. The reasoning I guess is the agency charges ore so you would get fewer hours for the money in the budget. This may have changed as there can be problems when you do not have an agency.
You should also check with the VA about Homemaker service, they will have someone come into the house and help. This is dropped if you are on the VIP program.
I would contact the VA ask to talk to a Patient Advocate and find out all the programs that he may be entitled to.
Once he can no longer get out easily to the doctors there is also a Home Based Primary Care. The Doctor, Nurse, Social Worker, Dietitian will all come to him so he does not have to go to the VA.

Remove the knobs on the stove so he can not turn it on.
Instant oatmeal, an electric kettle for water, they shut off as soon as the water boils.
Microwave, leave prepared meals for him that all he has to do is "zap" them.
Is there a reason he has fallen? Remove carpets if possible. The VA also has a program that will help pay for modifications to a house to make it safe and accessible for him. Talk to a Social Worker at the VA able this it is a Grant. (not 100% on this I think it is a HISA Grant)
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I was sucessfull in getting aide and attendance for my father in law of 1600.00 a month Plus 15 hours of care a week and 6 hours of respiite every other week. It really does depend if he was active during war time. Let me know I will be happy to help.
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Ok. What is real situation financially. Are you in his home? His income. Don't try to save for inheritance. Use his money. Start spending it for his care, then bring in all receipts. If you are under $80,000. in his bank, you should be ok. Utilities, taxes insurance, food, caregiving cost, mortgage. Call your County VA office, they will help for free. They will want to see bank statements.
Helpful Answer (2)

Was your dad in wartime? I forgot that ......
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Don't go through this alone! It's very complicated, and can take longer if you don't know which forms. You need to also look into increasing your Dad's disability pay. Not sure what he's at or if he even applied for it in the beginning. It sounds like he may have served in Vietnam, which means he will automatically receive compensation for a slew of things he doesn't even have to prove. My main advice is to contact a VA representative to advocate your case. They will help with both Aid & Attendance, and go after getting him any disability compensation he qualifies for. Go to:
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The biggest help for us was a person at the American Legion (I don't know what his official title was -- advocate? representative?) My mom found him through a list of people qualified to assist veterans. The list was provided through our VA hospital. The assistance was at no charge to us. He helped with questions about the A&A application process as well as with other questions we had in the following years. He was right-on with his advice and usually had more thorough knowledge of the VA than the VA employees.
Helpful Answer (1)

Complicated question and answers. My first question is have you filed a disability claim with the VA? From what you wrote it seems like you may not have. Veterans pension and aid and attendance are based on your income; however, if you file a claim for multiple problems caused or presumably caused in or by military service and it is determined to be the case you get a separate compensation check instead. Then if Dads need for care (the aid and attendance of another person to keep him safe in his environment, to feed, dress, toilet, shower etc) is needed you can apply for “special monthly compensation Aid and attendance which IS NOT based on your income but on your VA rated disabilities and you get a second check on top of the disability check to help care for him. It’s an arduous road but one that could be beneficial to look into. Does your Dad see a VA physician? If not he should. The VA can provide funding for adult daycare services while you are at work as well as any equipment he may need and homemaker chores and personal care. If he requires placement in a facility to keep himself safe the Doc can order it and the VA may pay for it plus if you have a veterans home in your state that may be an option as well. If you are a veteran and don’t yet have a claim filed for disabilities you are still eligible to to be placed in a Veterans home and the monthly cost is around $2000.00 a month vs private nursing homes in our area that are $8000,00 a month. In one of the previous answers on this post there was a gentleman that I believe was an expert in the area. Heed his advice. I’ve been dealing with the VA claim system for 3 years for my husband and it had been difficult. Best of luck to you and take care of yourself ❤️
Helpful Answer (0)
anonymous806474 Sep 2018
I will try to inform you of my experience for the Aid and Attendance that I received that was indespensible at the time of my Dads aging
at 96 years old I made a call to the VA due to my brother taking care of a blind,incontinent,worsening Dad with no help or understanding
of the superb help that was given albeit too late as my brother was getting sicker and was financially strapped all due to a phone call
for a pension or some help and the call was answered by someone
who suggested the A&A unbeknownst to me, well I had just gotten my dads medical records and he had a brain hemorage three yrs prior and the gentleman pushed the A&A and my father received compensation and retroactive money for one year for three years until my brother his caretaker died suddenly he had money to be put in NH until his death 6 mos, after Charley had died that same year and the retroactive money was used,10,000
to pay for his funeral as my brother did not touch the VA is wonderful if you qualify...….they continued his 900 disability A&A
THRU his NH stay with his SOC although I did not know that the VA will pay for his we had to pay 10,000 until he qualified for Medicaid...….we simply did not know about well as going to the VA doctors...there is all the info on the computer with the various downloadable forms bravo to the VA
because the aging of a senior with the fear...can I afford this is it the right move stuff is all so guilt ridden as well as the feeling that you are sending your DAD to his demise ...its very sad that the US hasn't gotten the Long Term Care aspect of seniors who are not
wealthy, together like other European Countries.Dad received the check 2 months after phonecall unheard of but great action and compassion on the VA's part...……..all with no lawyer or doctor..i just mailed the forms in with all the info.
There is a program I used VIP (pretty sure it is Veterans in Place) the object of the program is to keep Veterans in their homes and out of facilities.
The way the process works is someone comes to assess the Veteran and a "budget" is determined.
From this budget you can pay caregivers and I think one other service has to be selected. So housecleaning, yard service (mowing, snow removal) would be an example of 2 services.
Since you are a daughter not a spouse you could use the money to pay yourself. I strongly advise getting at least 1 other person to come in to care for him and give you a break.
Contact the VA and talk to a Social Worker and ask about VIP program.
There are other program the VA has that he would probably qualify for Homemaker, that would be a help. (limited to a certain number of hours per year though)
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