What is the VA’s Aid and Attendance Benefits?

Veterans who need assistance with everyday living may not realize that they can get additional financial support from the VA to cope.  The VA’s Aid and Attendance benefits program may be worth checking out. Wartime veterans who already received a VA pension may qualify. This assistance is not as well-known but is available for veterans who are in a nursing home or are spend all their time at home because of one or more disabling conditions.

What is the VA’s Aid and Attendance Benefits?

Because living assistance may increase a veteran’s expenses, this stipend can help offset the extra cost of that help.

Aid and Attendance Benefits

This is a benefit available to low-income veterans and their spouses who qualify for the VA pension. Whether they need in-home care assistance with everyday tasks like bathing, dressing, eating, etc., or if they live full time in a nursing home, Aid and Attendance can help make it easier to pay for their care.

A VA pension is not the same thing as military retirement pay. The VA pension is for veterans who have a financial need and a discharge that is not classified as dishonorable.

Aid and Attendance is not an automatic benefit. The veteran must apply for it separately.

The VA also has limits on income and assets, including a cap on the net worth at $129,094 for both. The veteran’s home is excluded up to a lot of two acres, even if the veteran resides in a nursing home. Medical expenses can be deducted from that limit. However, qualification is somewhat similar to Medicaid’s requirements. The VA has a three-year “lookback period” that examines whether any assets were gifted or sold below market value to lower the asset limit.


A veteran who served on active duty for at least 90 consecutive days which includes at least one full day during a time of war can be eligible for Aid and Attendance if they also qualify for the basic veterans’ pension and meet the financial and medical requirements. The veteran’s service does not have to include time in a combat zone.

For the veteran who went into active duty on or about September 7th, 1980, they must have at least 24 months of service with at least one day during a time of war, or other hostilities.  A widowed spouse of an eligible veteran may also qualify if they meet the same medical and income requirements and never remarried.

The Wartime Veteran

To qualify for the VA’s aid and attendance benefits, the veteran is required to be a veteran of wartime service. Those dates include:

World War II—December 7, 1941, through December 31, 1946
Korean Conflict—June 27, 1950, through January 31, 1955
Vietnam Era

o February 28, 1961, through May 7, 1975, for veterans who served in the Republic of Vietnam during the period
o August 5, 1964, through May 7, 1975, for those who did not

Gulf War—August 2, 1990, through a future end date set by law or Presidential proclamation or law (the VA considers this war to be still in effect)

The veteran must also meet one of the following requirements to qualify for a basic pension:

• Age 65 or older with no little to no income
• Be permanently and totally disabled
• Receive Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI)
• Receive Social Security disability insurance (SSDI)
• Live in a nursing home

Surviving spouses may also be able to apply under the same criteria.

Need Help? Work With A Houston VA Disability Attorney

Call The Herren Law Firm in Houston at 713-682-8194 (or use our online contact form) to schedule your free consultation for VA disability and other benefits. Our contingency fee basis means you won’t owe a fee until we win your case, and there’s no obligation.

Can You Receive Both CRDP And VA Disability In Houston, TX?

Concurrent Retirement Disability Pay, or CRDP, is a specific type of payment for military retirees with a 50% or greater rating from the VA. It concurrently supplements the VA disability payments that a veteran may receive. Generally, veterans can’t receive benefits from both the VA and from the DoD in the form of military retirement pay. However, the CRDP changes that.

Can You Receive Both CRDP And VA Disability In Houston, TX?

The good news is that yes, you can receive both if you’re qualified. But there are a few things you need to know before you ask about receiving CRDP.

What It Is

This law was passed in 2004 to give military veterans both their VA disability benefits and their military disability through the DoD.

CRDP is a benefit that allows veterans who qualify to receive monthly benefit payments from both the DoD and the VA. It is a “phase-in” of benefits that gradually restores a retiree’s disability offset from the VA.

CRDP became fully implemented in January of 2014,

Are You Qualified For CRDP?

Veterans who are rated 50% or higher disabled qualify, if they are eligible for retirement pay. If you would be eligible for retirement if you were not disabled and receiving disability pay, you may be eligible. However, you must also meet one of these additional qualifications:

  • Be a reserve retiree with 30 years of qualifying service, have a disability rating of 50% or higher, and at retirement age.
    • The retirement age for reservists is generally 60 years of age, but some reserve retirees may reach eligibility prior to 60. Members of the Ready Reserve can have their retirement ages lowered below age 60 by 3 months for every 90 days of service during a fiscal year.
  • Retired under the Temporary Early Retirement Act (TERA) along with a VA disability rating of 50% or higher.
  • Be a disability retiree who earned your entitlement to the retired pay under another provision of law aside from only disability with a VA disability rating of 50% or higher. Your CRDP eligibility may occur at the time you would have otherwise become eligible for retirement pay.

If you are qualified, you should automatically receive monthly payments. The Defense And Finance Accounting Service conducts regular audits of accounts to ensure correct payments. If you were not previously being paid at your correct rate, it is possible that you could receive a retroactive payment from the DoD, based on:

  • Your date of retirement
  • The date at which you first became disabled at 50%

You are also eligible to receive both your VA disability compensation and your retired pay if you are a military retiree who meets all of the above requirements in addition to:

  • Rated by the VA as unemployable, also known as Individual Unemployability (IU)
  • Receiving VA disability compensation as a result of IU

The DFAS also forwards its audit findings to the VA so that they may conduct their own assessments.

Additional information is available on the DFAS website.

CRDP Caveat

Getting CRDP means you are compensated for retirement pay that you didn’t receive before. This means that it can also be subjected to a collection for things such as:

  • Any government debt
  • Alimony
  • Community property
  • Child support

Unlike the VA disability, you will be required to pay taxes on anything you receive as CRDP. These payments stop when a retiree passes away.

Get Help From A Houston VA Disability Attorney

Whether you’re ready to start your application, need help with an appeal, or want to investigate a case review, we’re ready to assist. You do have the right to legal representation whether you’re starting your application, facing a hearing or dealing with an appeal.

Call The Herren Law Firm in Houston at 713-682-8194 (or use our online contact form) to schedule your free consultation for VA disability and other benefits. Our contingency fee basis means you won’t owe a fee until we win your case, and there’s no obligation.



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