U.S. military veterans who served for at least 20 years become eligible for a retirement pension. The exact details vary depending on the dates of service. The benefit amount increases if you serve beyond the 20-year threshold.
If you are a veteran, you made sacrifices for your country. This pension can facilitate a comfortable retirement. You could remain in the service for your entire career. In this case, you would step away with a sizable pension to combine with your Social Security benefit.
Another option is the second career route. After 20 years of service, you can exit the military and embark on a career in the private sector. You will be earning a salary while you are also bringing in a pension benefit. You can save this pension benefit to help finance your retirement years.
Veterans Pension for Wartime Veterans
In addition to the retirement pension, there is another benefit that is simply called the VA Veterans Pension. This benefit is available to wartime veterans that were not dishonorably discharged. You must be 65 years of age and older or permanently and totally disabled.
The length of service requirement is much more modest than the retirement pension service period. If you began your active duty before September 8, 1980, you need 90 days of service with one day of service when the country was at war.
For those that served after this date, the requirement is 24 months or the entire service term with a single day served during wartime.
The Veterans Pension is a need-based benefit, and on October 18, 1980, a hard net worth limit was established. In 2022, the net worth limit is $138,489, and this includes annual income along with countable assets.
We use the qualifier “countable” assets because your home is not counted if you apply for the Veterans Pension. One motor vehicle and the items that you have in your home that would not be moved if you relocate are exempt.
Aid and Attendance Veterans Pension
There is a standard Veterans Pension for qualified service members that do not have any health restrictions. Veterans that cannot leave their homes for the most part can qualify for a Housebound version, and the benefit is increased.
The Aid and Attendance Veterans Pension is available to qualified people that served in the military and need help with their activities of daily living. In 2022, the maximum annual benefit for a single veteran that is eligible for this benefit is $24,610.
A veteran with one dependent can receive as much is $29,175 a year. For each additional dependent, you add another $2523.
Long-Term Care Costs Are Looming
You should definitely take the possibility of incurring long-term care costs seriously, whether you are a veteran or not. The United States department of Health and Human Services has determined that 70 percent of seniors will need help with their day-to-day needs.
Just over half of the elders in the United States will require paid long-term care. Unfortunately Medicare does not cover in-home custodial care or a stay in a nursing home. The median annual charge for a private room in a nursing home in the Oklahoma City area was $88,695 last year.
Nursing home costs can take a huge bite out of your legacy if you are single. Married couples face the possibility that they may be forced to deal with two different sets of long-term care bills.
As a response, you could position your assets with future Medicaid eligibility in mind. This program will pay for long-term care, and we can help you develop a financial profile that will lead to eligibility for Medicaid coverage.
Schedule a Consultation Today!
If you are ready to work with an Oklahoma City elder care planning attorney to create a plan for aging, we are prepared to help. You can send us a message to request a consultation appointment, or we can be reached by phone at 405-843-6100.
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