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VA Aid and Attendance Pension Rochester NY: Who Qualifies?

Wartime veterans who have low income and are trying to cope with the financial challenges brought on by needing home care can get some assistance through the VA Aid and Attendance Pension.

What is meant by Aid and Attendance?

Aid is for the home care assistance that the elderly veteran requires and attendance is for the attending care of a home care provider, or in other words Caregiver. This is a pension paid in addition to the basic pension that the veteran already receives. It is given to qualified applicants to help pay for:

  • Assisted living
  • Home care or home health care
  • Caregiver for home care
  • Live-in care or hourly care

Who is eligible?

This pension can be received by elderly veterans who:

  • Have limited or no income/assets
  • Are eligible for the VA pension
  • Are at least 65 years of age
  • Meet specific disability requirements
  • If they are under 65, they are permanently disabled or completely disabled
  • Are the surviving spouse of a wartime veteran, and have not remarried

What other requirements are there for qualification?

  • Honorable discharge from a branch of the US Armed Forces
  • Must have served at least one day during a period of war – not necessarily in combat – and also had continuous military service lasting a minimum of 90 days.

What is the application process?

  • You can obtain an application form from any one of several government sites or go straight to to apply online.
  • The application form is lengthy and somewhat complicated. The elderly veteran may want to have a family member help him to fill out the forms.
  • Because of the significant wait until the form is processed and qualification is verified, the family of the elderly veteran may want to start the process as early as possible.
  • Some home care services will approve care ahead of time, while waiting for the application to be approved. The benefits are paid retroactive, so that the home care agency can be paid when the claim money comes through, for time already spent.

Unreimbursed medical expenses also figure into the equation as to whether a veteran qualifies for this pension or not. When the countable income is calculated, medical expenses which have not been reimbursed, marital status and number of dependents are also taken into account. A formula for Maximum Annual Pension Rate (MAPR) is used for calculation the income requirements for receiving the VA Aid and Attendance Pension.

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Kevin Watkins

Caring Hearts of Rochester was founded by John Hunt and Kevin Watkins. Kevin and John met when they were in the same Boy Scout Troop in their youth. They chose different career paths before forming Caring Hearts.
Kevin and his wife, Candy, lived in Naples, Florida for 10 years, where three of their four children were born. He was recruited to the insurance industry by a colleague who felt his personality would benefit people with needs. The insurance industry became a big part of their lives. He evaluated peoples’ risks, working with property and casualty, and life products, and later began to underwrite Long Term Care insurance as people were beginning to plan for their futures. He started two agencies, then bought a third. In his last three years before selling his third agency, he was ranked in the top 10%, top 5% & then top 1% nationally out of the more than 12,500 Allstate agencies in the U.S. at the time. Kevin’s success can be accredited to his kind nature and his genuine desire to help individuals and families with their needs. He feels very at home meeting with people and discussing their needs, a trait that has been very helpful in his continued success with Caring Hearts of Rochester. Kevin returned to Rochester in 2006 to introduce their young children to snow and to be closer to his extended family.

After having returned to Rochester from their careers in other states, John and Kevin reconnected. Alzheimer’s had afflicted both of their families, and they had both experienced and witnessed the challenges associated with the role of being a caregiver. Kevin’s and John’s collective experiences complemented their desire to work with families and individuals in need. They founded Caring Hearts of Rochester and have since been able work in a capacity that has become a passion for them. They are both Certified Senior Advisors (CSA), a designation earned through education, study and experience in the Elderly and Geriatric Care Profession. Their number one concern is providing their senior clients with ethical and effective services and products. Caring Hearts of Rochester is associated with numerous local affiliations for the elderly in the Upstate NY area including Lifespan, Eldersource, and the Greater Rochester Area Partnership for the Elderly.

As the co-founders and hands-on managers of Caring Hearts of Rochester, we thank you for this opportunity to tell you about our passion. We are responsible for the services we offer, for the people we hire, for the training they receive, for the quality and reliability of the services our team delivers to you and your loved ones. Give us a call so that we may learn more about you and your needs at (585) 861-CARE(2273)

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