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January 22, 2019

Even a Frugal Veteran Could Find Himself Struggling If He Needs Home Care

Older generations have a tendency to have lived more frugally than younger ones. This is especially true when those older generations didn’t have much growing up. For an elderly veteran, even though he may have been incredibly frugal throughout his life and built up a decent retirement portfolio or savings, the prospect of hiring home care may seem a bit absurd.

They can’t justify the expense.

Some may not be able to afford a home health care aide. Others may not see the value in these services, especially if they can still get around for the most part, only calling on friends, neighbors, or family for help every once in a while.

Others can’t justify spending their own money on something for themselves, especially if they don’t see how a home health care aide is actually going to help.

For qualifying veterans, there is a pension that can help.

This pension is called the Aid and Attendance benefit. It was initially developed after World War I and was intended to provide financial help for soldiers injured during battle. These returning soldiers could get care at home for the injuries and disabilities sustained during that conflict.

Over the years this pension program was expanded and now provides financial assistance to qualifying veterans, whether they were injured or disabled during active duty service or not. For veterans under 65, they would need to be considered completely disabled in order to qualify, but for veterans 65 and over, they must have a documentable requirement for this level of assistance, most commonly provided through a doctor’s recommendation.

What about income and assets?

The veteran must meet specific income and asset requirements in order to qualify for Aid and Attendance benefits. However, the threshold values may differ from other pensions so even if that veteran was denied another pension due to income and assets, he or she may still qualify for Aid and Attendance.

The veteran’s primary residence and other assets that cannot be quickly converted into cash (which would then be used to pay for home care support services directly) may not be included in the income and asset threshold calculations.

Apply as soon as possible.

As soon as an aging veteran has had home health care support services recommended by his or her doctor, if they are considered a wartime veteran (meaning they served at least one day of their active duty service during a time in which the United States was officially engaged in combat, even though they may never have served in a forward combat situation), they should fill out and submit the application as soon as possible.

It could take many months for the approval process to be completed and since January is Financial Wellness Month, even the most frugal veterans might be eligible for financial assistance of this kind.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Health Care Services in Chicago Heights IL, please contact the caring staff at Big Hearts Home Care today! 

Matthew Calcagno

Matthew is a graduate of Robert Morris College and is a U.S. Navy veteran.Matthew founded Big Hearts Home Care after over a decade at HP. Spending time volunteering at his grandparent’s senior center inspired him to make a bigger difference in the quality of care seniors receive.His grandfather whom turned 100 in 2015 is still a major inspiration to him in seeing that service is provided with a family focused touch.

It is his passion and commitment to providing quality service that has awarded Big Hearts Home Care as Provider of Choice and Employer of Choice in the Chicagoland area. He believes that being an independently owned and operated company allows him the flexibility to manage the business in a way that better serves the clients.


"Helping people is what I was meant to do; it inspires and motivates me," Calcagno said. "I also get to help veterans - assisting them in the VA pension process and providing care for several in the area. This is what I love to do."

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