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"How to get Medi-Cal coverage for your nursing home care... without selling your home or leaving your family without a dime... Surprising ways to pay for your assisted living and long term care costs."

Elder Law Today Newsletter | Vol. 27 | May, 2008


A VA Benefit for Long Term Care Pt. 2 - And Back to Work After the War

VA Aid & Attendance: In the March, 2008 ELT, we mentioned the pension program called “Aid and Attendance,” available for individuals who are disabled due to the issues of old age, such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and other physical disabilities. A veteran can receive as much $1,842 per month with one dependent, and a surviving spouse can receive as much $1,191 per month with one dependent, of this special benefit.

The following are some additional requirements for eligibility:

a. Be a veteran who served at least 90 days of active duty.
b. At least one day of active duty had to be during wartime: WWII – 12/7/41 to 7/25/47 – Korea – 6/27/50 to 12/31/55 – Vietnam – 8/5/64 to 5/7/75;
c. Does not need to have been in combat;
d. Discharged other than dishonorably;
e. Income less than $1,800 per month, once out-of-pocket medical expenses are considered.
f. Net worth less than approximately $50,000 for singles or $80,000 for couples.
g. Gifting of assets is allowed with no look-back period, but must be coordinated with Medi-Cal planning and gifting, which does have a look-back period.

Back to Work After The War: The stories in the ELT newsletters are printed with permission of our clients, and sometimes poetic license is used in the stories. My 86 year old client told me that on December 8, 1941, he was working with his father and uncle in their family print shop on Howard St. in San Francisco when they heard President Roosevelt announce in a radio address that the Japanese Navy had bombed Pearl Harbor the day before, and had also attacked Hong Kong and the Philippines. He said that the President announced that the U.S. was in a state of war with the Empire of Japan! He told me that the next day he said good-bye to his family, and went downtown to join the Merchant Marines. He did not want to wait for the paperwork necessary to join the Navy. He said that he was at sea for four years, and it sounds like he had a rough go of it. It seems that even though the Merchant Marines were supplying U.S. troops around they globe, the supplies for the crew on his ship were meager at best. He said he even contracted scurvy, which is caused by an insufficiency of vitamin C. When the war was over, his ship returned to port in San Francisco in September of 1945. My client said that upon arrival, he caught a street car, and found his way back to the print shop on Howard St. That same day, he worked in the print shop with his father and uncle, as if nothing had happen ed! This is a true American hero.

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