May 6

VA Benefit Can Help with Cost of Assisted Living

By Rick Banas, Vice President of Strategic Marketing for BMA Management, Ltd.

The mission of our organization is to educate veterans and their families about a program that may help with the costs for assisted living and nursing home care, explained Jim Cauthorn, a Regional Director for an organization known as the American Association for Wartime Veterans (

He was speaking recently to a group of residents and guests at Heritage Woods of South Elgin, an affordable assisted living community that BMA manages in South Elgin, Illinois.

Jim was talking about a program called Aid & Attendance, which can provide tax-free benefits to eligible wartime veterans and spouses and widows of wartime veterans.

There are three key eligibility requirements, Jim noted.

  • The veteran must have served in the active military for 90 or more consecutive days with at least one of those days being during a period of wartime as defined by the Veterans Administration.
  • The veteran must have been discharged under anything other than dishonorable conditions.
  • The veteran must be over the age of 65 or disabled.

In addition, the veteran or spouse must be in need of at least one activity of daily living such as showering, medication reminders, grooming and personal hygiene to name a few.

While there are income and asset limits, the veteran or spouse does not have to be out of money or impoverished in order to qualify.

What is important to understand, Jim noted, is that the “VA cannot help you complete the application” for Aid & Attendance benefits and the “paperwork is tricky.” Many wartime veterans are turned down needlessly simply because they do not understand how to qualify.

Aid & Attendance consultants and organizations such as the American Association for Wartime Veterans are among those who can help. The AAWV is a private organization that is not affiliated with any government organization. Since 2002, the AAWV has helped wartime veterans and their spouses obtain $145 million in Aid & Attendance benefits.

More information about the AAWV can be obtained by calling 1-800-850-5504 or visiting

The video below is part of NBC Nightly News – In Depth special series Trading Places – Taking Care for your Parents. The focus of this segment is on the Aid & Attendance Program.

All affordable assisted living communities managed by BMA Management, Ltd. are certified and surveyed by the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services. All assisted living communities are licensed and surveyed by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

“BMA Management, Ltd. is the leading provider of assisted living in Illinois
and one of the 20 largest providers of assisted living in the United States.”

What are your thoughts? Leave a comment and let us know.

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