New Veterans Administration (VA) Rules
The VA has finally released its new regulations, which can be very important to anyone who files for VA benefits AFTER October 18, 2018, or who wants to file before then!
The Good News: Allowable medical expenses have increased to include the monthly cost of Independent Living Facilities, if a physician has required that the patient either needs assistance with two Activities of Daily Living (ADL) or supervision due to cognitive or physical limitations. ADLs include walking, bathing, dressing, toileting, pain management, feeding, and grooming.
Other Good News: The asset test, which was about $80,000, which was the amount the veteran could retain, has now been increased to $123,600, to be increased each year with inflation. The test, however, now includes annual gross income, minus medical expenses.
Other News: There is now a THREE-YEAR LOOK-BACK period for transfers for less than fair-market value. This makes planning for eligibility much more difficult than before, but at least it does not follow Medicaid’s 5-year look-back period.
Other News 2: There is now a penalty for any transfers made during the look-back period. The period can last up to 5 years. The total amount of transfers made during the look-back is divided by a number which is the MAPR (Maximum Annual Pension Rate) for a veteran with one dependent seeking Aid & Attendance and Improved Pension, regardless of who is making the application.
Veterans or survivors should consult with their VA-accredited attorneys to determine the best approach for them.