As elder law attorneys, we educate our neighbors about important matters that they may face when they attain senior citizen status. It is very important to have a thorough understanding of benefits that may be available to you, and this is especially important for veterans of the United States Armed Forces.
Most veterans are aware of the fact that individuals that served for at least 20 years become eligible for a retirement pension. The amount that you would receive if you are a service member goes up as you stay in the military beyond this 20 year period of time.
This gives you a great opportunity to enjoy your golden years to the fullest. You could simply stay in for 40 years and retire from all work permanently. If you do this, you would receive 100% of the pay that you were getting while you were on active duty. This income would be augmented by your Social Security payout.
Another option that many veterans take advantage of is the second career scenario. Let’s say that you join the service when you are 19 years of age, and you retire when you are 39. At that point, you would receive a monthly pension for the rest of your life, and you would have a very strong resume to present to employers.
After you obtain a career position in the private sector, you could choose to save all of your military pension as you live on your earnings. Over the years, you could contribute into a 401(k) that is offered at work, and by the time you are old enough to collect Social Security, you would be in a very comfortable financial position.
Supplemental Income for Wartime Veterans
There is another veterans pension that flies well under the radar, and some people that are eligible for it do not know that they could take advantage of this benefit. Veterans that served for at least 90 days on active duty with a minimum of one of these days taking place during wartime meet the length of service requirement.
Additionally, you must be at least one of the following:
- A patient in a nursing home or assisted living facility
- Permanently disabled
- A recipient of Social Security Disability Insurance payments or SSI
- At least 65 years of age
This benefit is intended for people with a certain level of financial need, and up until recently, the general rule on countable assets included an $80,000 limit. However, decisions were made on a case-by-case basis, and it should be noted that residential property was not counted.
Plus, a would-be applicant that was in possession of resources that would be in excess of the limit could give them to loved ones a day or a week before they submitted their application with no penalties.
Things are somewhat different now due to new parameters that have been mandated by Congress. There is currently a hard net worth limit of $123,600, which is equal to the amount that the spouse of a Medicaid applicant could retain in 2018. As it applies to the veterans pension, this would include assets and income.
A three-year look back period has also been implemented. This means that any gift giving that is going to take place must be completed at least three years before the application is submitted. It should be noted that there is a five-year look back period that applies to Medicaid eligibility.
Schedule a Consultation Right Now!
If you would like to learn more about the Supplemental Income for Wartime Veterans benefit or any other elder law or estate planning matter, our doors are open. We would be more than glad to gain an understanding of your situation, answer any questions that you have, and help you put a custom crafted plan in place.
You can set the wheels in motion if you give us a call at (585) 374-5210. There is also a contact form on this website that you can use if you would prefer to send us a message.