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I’ve called the VA but was told my dad didn’t qualify for financial assistance due to not serving during wartime. But he was career military in the guards for over 20 years after active 4 year naval duty. He has Tricare for life so if he qualifies for that should he not qualify for some kind of financial help to live in an assisted living facility? Can anyone advise me in this?

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Your father is a Vet if for just the 4 years he served in the Navy. He may not qualify for Aid and Attendance but he may qualify for other help. You need to get his records and discharge papers and check the dates he served in both. As I responded earlier to a post, as a Guard he is entitled to some benefits. You need to find out which ones. I would personally sit down with a VA rep. Your County should have an office. Take all Dads military records with you. Better face to face than by phone. You don't have to serve during a war to get VA benefits.

"A person who served in the active military, naval, or air service and who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable may qualify for VA health care benefits including qualifying Reserve and National Guard members"

Be aware though, that Dad may be entitled to benefits, but Mom may not be. I know a couples where the husbands use the Vet hospital and doctors but the wives need to get their own insurance suppliments. Both men served in Viet Nam for 1 year, serving for the required 2 yrs after being drafted.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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I believe you have your answer directly from the VA. The criteria is clear. Dad needed to serve in wartime. He did not. He was in the National Guard after his 4 year deployment. This is not career military per se. The National Guard is different. Best of luck to you. Most AL are paid from the person’s savings or LTC insurance policies thus out of pocket.
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Reply to Shane1124
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I wonder if this is why we dont declare wars anymore, and just have decades long "police actions", to screw over vets by saying they didn't serve in wartime?
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Reply to ZippyZee
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JoAnn29 Nov 28, 2020
VN and Korea were actually conflicts but are considered Wars when applying for Aids and Attendance. Since u need to be 65 to get A&A, those servicemen fighting in the last 30 yrs aren't old enough yet to collect.
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Here are the years I found for the Vietnam War. Did your Dad serve during the VN war? He doesn't have to fight, just br serving. Do you have his discharge papers? My Dad had a paper saying he was eligible for VA benefits.

" Vietnam era: The period beginning on February 28, 1961, and ending on May 7, 1975, inclusive, in the case of a veteran who served in the Republic of Vietnam during that period. The period beginning on August 5, 1964, and ending on May 7, 1975, inclusive, in all other cases. (Note: From February 28, 1961 to Aug 4, 1964, vet must have boots on the ground.)"
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Reply to JoAnn29
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worriedinCali Nov 27, 2020
The OP says her dad didn’t serve during wartime. 4 years naval duty doesn’t qualify for financial assistance if it wasn’t served during wartime.
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"Yes, generally, all National Guard and Reserve members qualify for some VA benefits. Different VA benefits may consider different factors to determine eligibility, such as length of service, type of service (such as under Title 10 or Title 32), wartime service, and/or service-related disability."

Aide and Attendance you need to serve during wartime. But he may qualify for other benefits. If he was in the Navy for 4 years I would think that would get him something.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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With what department did you speak?   I don't remember the name of the specific eligibility department, but it's the one with whom you should be speaking to get qualification information.

The VA has made some changes recently, but I don't recall whether or not they affect eligibility. I do recall receiving one of the regular e-mail updates on eligibility, but I didn't check out all the links.

I've found though that the VFW and American Legion have advisers who are very knowledgable in  understanding of the various levels of VA qualification.  
You could also contact your local County or State VA office if you have one.    These advisors really, really are helpful.

Another route is to find out what assistance they can give to you as caregiver, and go from there to locate his team and social worker for more specific advice.

https://www.agingcare.com/discussions/veterans-food-assistance-and-caregiver-assistance-programs-462976.htm

I wish you luck and success in getting more information.  
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Reply to GardenArtist
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War time service is required. Benefits for guard are a little different. Check with guard officials to see if there is anything he is eligible to receive.
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Reply to Bridger46164
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If the VA told you specifically that your dad doesn't qualify for financial assistance, I don't know what recourse you have, frankly, since they are the ones to cut the checks!

Check online for agencies that specifically help with VA benefits in Alabama and perhaps they can advise you further. I used a State Dept of Military & Veteran's Affairs Officer for the VA here in Denver when I applied for my father's Aid & Attendance benefits. But he was active duty Army during WWII. Being career military and being active during wartime are two different matters.

Wishing you good luck in your quest for financial assistance!
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Reply to lealonnie1
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