VETERAN’S NEWS From the Internet
Gathered by Bob Kinsler, SSG (ret), US Army, VFW Dept. of Oklahoma, Public Affairs Team Member
Did you know VA offers a pension for eligible wartime Veterans who have limited or no income?
This needs-based tax-free monetary benefit helps eligible Veterans and their families cope with financial challenges by providing supplemental income.
WHAT ARE PENSION BENEFITS? • Pension is a needs-based benefit paid to a wartime Veteran and his/her survivor(s).
A Veteran may generally be eligible if he/she:
o was discharged from service under other than dishonorable conditions, AND
o served 90 days or more of active military, naval or air service with at least 1 day during a period of war*, AND
o his/her countable income is below the maximum annual pension rate, AND
o meets the net worth limitations, AND
o is age 65 or older, OR is shown by evidence to have a permanent and total non-service connected disability, OR is a patient in a nursing home, OR is receiving Social Security disability benefits.
*Veterans who entered active duty after September 7, 1980, must also have served at least 24 months of active duty service. If the total length of service is less than 24 months, the Veteran must have completed his/her entire tour of active duty.
- Aid and Attendance (A&A) is an increased monthly pension amount paid to a Veteran or surviving spouse. You may be eligible for the increased A&A amount if:
o You are eligible for basic pension benefits AND
o You require the aid of another person in order to perform activities of daily living, such as bathing, feeding, dressing, toileting, adjusting prosthetic devices, or protecting yourself from the hazards of your daily environment, OR
o You are bedridden, in that your disability or disabilities require that you remain in bed apart from any prescribed course of convalescence or treatment, OR You are a patient in a nursing home due to mental or physical incapacity, OR
o You have corrected visual acuity of 5/200 or less, in both eyes, or concentric contraction of the visual field to 5 degrees or less.
- Housebound is an increased monthly pension amount paid to a Veteran or surviving spouse who is substantially confined to his or her home because of permanent disability. You may be eligible if: o You are eligible for basic pension benefits AND
o You have a single permanent disability evaluated as 100-percent disabling AND, due to a disability or disabilities, you are permanently and substantially confined to your immediate premises, OR
o You have a single permanent disability evaluated as 100-percent disabling AND another disability or disabilities, independently evaluated as 60-percent or more disabling.
Proof of income and net worth information (e.g., bank statements, paystubs), Private medical treatment records and where to find any relevant treatment records that might be held by a federal facility, such as a VA medical center, Completed pension program applications:
VA Application Process
Pension claim decision times vary depending on the complexity of the case and evidence. The fastest way to obtain a pension benefit decision is to file a Fully Developed Claim (FDC). Here are some typical steps in the process:
- Select the type of pension claim and gather the evidence it requires.
- Collect military medical and other records.
- Gather any private medical records.
- Certify that there is no more evidence.
- Submit your application.
The best way of filing for these benefits is go see your local VFW Service Officer or Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs Claims and Benefits Representative with the information noted above.