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How to Learn About Veterans Benefits

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It's important to educate yourself on veterans benefits that you may receive as a result of you or a loved one's military service.  This could help you uncover thousands of dollars in benefit programs, and other financial assistance programs. 

 

The following outlines how you can begin the process of understanding your eligibility and preparing to file a claim.   

 

What Benefits are Available to United States Veterans and Qualifying Dependents?

There are various benefits offered to Veterans and their loved ones, which are outlined on the www.choose.va.gov website to explore.  They include:  

 

Veteran's Pension

The Veterans Pension program provides monthly payments to wartime Veterans who meet certain age or disability requirements, and who have income and net worth within certain limits.

 

Disability Pension

Veterans may be eligible for service-connected Veterans Pension if they became injured while on active duty service.  There is no statute of limitations regarding the length of time that has passed between your date of separation and filing a claim.

NOTE: VA Disability Compensation (pay) also offers a monthly tax-free payment to Veterans who got sick or injured while serving in the military and to Vets whose service made an existing condition worse.

For Veterans who suffered from a permanent disability and are unable to leave their home without assistance, VA Aid & Attendance or Housebound benefits are an increased monthly pension amount. 

 

Survivor's Pension

A VA Survivors Pension offers monthly payments to qualified surviving spouses and unmarried dependent children of wartime Veterans who meet certain income and net worth limits, listed here

 

Education and Training

Funds may be available to help further a Veteran’s education and civilian career training, and can include: 

    • Paying college tuition
    • Finding the right school or training program
    • Getting career counseling

 

Careers and Employment

 The Department of Veterans Affairs can assist with career transitioning into civilian life

 

Health Care

VA Healthcare offers health services, such as regular checkups, to Veterans and qualifying dependents at locations all across the U.S. for both routine and specialist needs. 

NOTE: Elderly Veterans can also access other health care services, such as home health and geriatric (eldercare), and get medical equipment, prosthetics, and prescriptions. 

 

Housing Assistance

There are specific home-buying assistance and VA Home Loans available to Vets. In addition, you may qualify for assisted living, residential (live-in), or home health care through VA.

    • For sick or disabled veterans, long-term care services are available. These include:
      • Skilled nursing care
      • Physical Therapy
      • Medical care
      • Help with activities of daily living
      • Respite care for caregivers

NOTE: These care benefits may take place in a variety of settings, including Nursing Homes, Assisted Living Facilities / Senior Living Communities, Adult Day Care Centers, and Vets' own homes.  

 

Life Insurance

The Department of Veterans Affairs providers specific life insurance products and coverage to Veterans and qualifying dependents

 

Burials and Memorials

Free burial services are available to certain family members of Veterans, including dependents and spouses

 

Details regarding specific eligibility requirements and available benefits can be found by visiting the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at www.choose.va.gov and clicking on the individual benefit tabs

 

To find benefits speciific to you and. your loved one, go to readysetcare.com/care-solutions/benefits

 

Understanding the Application Process for Veterans Benefits

Once you have identified which benefits you are interested in applying for and you have verified that you are meeting criteria, you will want to ensure you are completing the correct, coded application.

 

Application Process

While all specific applications can be found on the www.Choose.VA.GOV website, by clicking the respective benefit tabs and following the prompts, applicants need to be aware of the following: 

    • The applications may not be simple to complete, and the directions can be confusing
    • There may be supplemental verifications and documents that must be submitted along with the primary application
    • If an incomplete application is submitted this can add substantial processing time to an already lengthy adjudication process
    • Be advised that you can retain qualified representation to assist with the claims process by visiting the VA.GOV website and search for “ACCREDITED AGENTS” in your area.  However, please note that because VA Pension benefits are Federal any accredited agent can assist regardless of the state that you reside in.
    • A non-accredited individual is allowed to assist with only one application during their lifetime

Things to Consider in the process

    • Remember: The application process is not simple
    • Retaining experienced representation will save a lot of frustration and processing time. You can obtain qualified representation by …
      • contacting a local Veterans Service Organization
      • contacting a local Veterans Administration Attorney Accredited Agent
      • contacting a non-attorney Veterans Administration Agent
    • A knowledgeable representative can ensure that the correct application is completed and all required supplemental verifications are included. This can expedite the processing time and reduce stress
    • The accredited agent can also assist with filing an appeal on your behalf in the event of an adverse decision

NOTE: Veterans Service Organization Agents are VA employees and Accredited Attorney Agents as well as Non-Attorney Accredited Agents are NOT typically VA employees and function independently on behalf of the Veteran/applicant

    • Be certain to keep a copy of the application and all verifications/communications that are sent and received
      • While the Department of Veterans Affairs encourages applications to be submitted electronically you may want to consider submitting the application via Fed Ex or USPS Certified Mail to ensure that you have proof of delivery.  This can ensure you are able to prove the date of establishment of your claim, which can be key in ensuring receipt of accrued back pay of pension or compensation benefits. 
    • If you communicate with the Department of Veterans Affairs by phone be certain to ask for the employees name and four digit identification number for your records.  This can be very important in the event there are any issues in the timeliness of adjudication of your benefit claim or if you need to appeal a benefit application decision.

 

TIP: For information concerning VA benefits and Veterans Aid or for direct application assistance you can visit The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at www.va.gov and www.choose.va.com 

 

The Veterans Pension program provides monthly payments to wartime Veterans who meet certain age or disability requirements, and who have income and net worth within certain limits.



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