Aid and Attendance (A&A) is an add-on benefit paid in addition to monthly pension. This benefit may not be paid without eligibility to pension. To begin an assessment of your eligibility, click here. A Veteran or surviving Spouse may be eligible for A&A when:
- The Veteran or Surviving Spouse requires the aid of another person in order to perform one or more personal functions required in everyday living, such as:
- inability to feed themselves through loss of coordination of upper extremities or through extreme weakness,
- inability to dress or undress themselves,
- attending to the wants of nature,
- inability to keep themselves ordinarily clean and presentable,
- adjusting prosthetic or orthopedic devices which by reason of the particular disability cannot be done without aid, or
- incapacity, physical or mental, which requires care or assistance on a regular basis to protect oneself from the hazards or dangers of one’s daily environment, OR,
- The Veteran or Surviving Spouse is bedridden, in that their disability or disabilities requires that they remain in bed apart from any prescribed course of convalescence or treatment, OR,
- The Veteran or Surviving Spouse is a patient in a nursing home due to mental or physical incapacity, OR,
- The Veteran or Surviving Spouse is blind, or so nearly blind as to have corrected visual acuity of 5/200 or less, in both eyes, or concentric contraction of the visual field to 5 degrees or less.
NOTE: Any one of the above conditions may qualify the Veteran or Surviving Spouse for Aid and Attendance. Additionally, if a Claimant’s Spouse meets the qualifications of a need for aid and attendance, that need may also assist a Veteran in qualifying for the improved pension benefit.
Neither a Veteran nor a Surviving Spouse can receive both Aid and Attendance and Housebound benefits at the same time.
When applying for the Aid and Attendance add-on benefit, you should include copies of any evidence, preferably a form from an attending physician validating the need for Aid and Attendance type care.
You may obtain the necessary form at http://www.vba.va.gov/pubs/forms/VBA-21-2680-ARE.pdf
- The form should be completed in sufficient detail to determine whether there is disease or injury producing physical or mental impairment, loss of coordination, or conditions affecting the ability to dress and undress, to feed oneself, to attend to sanitary needs, and to keep oneself ordinarily clean and presentable.
- In addition, it is necessary to determine whether the claimant is confined to the home or immediate premises.
- The report should indicate how well the individual gets around, where the individual goes, and what he or she is able to do during a typical day.