Are you a veteran or a family of a veteran who wants to learn the ins and outs of estate planning? It is crucial that you consult with an estate planning attorney to see if you are eligible for Aid and Attendance Veteran Benefits. We can help, contact us today.
Estate planning is a task that varies depending on your family life, your financial situation, and many other factors. Being a veteran can also affect how you go about your estate planning. A Los Angeles estate planning attorney can help you make solid, reliable plans that will benefit your family once you’re gone.
Experts on estate planning for veterans can help you make the most of your assets and protect your family. Military families deserve the legal and financial protection that estate planning creates.
What are Veterans Benefits?
A veteran’s benefits include many forms of assistance and aid, from the G.I. Bill and education benefits to home loans backed by Veterans Affairs (VA).
Veterans can also qualify for a life insurance policy for themselves and their loved ones. Servicemembers group life insurance offers up to $400,000 of coverage at a low cost and allows you to choose your beneficiaries.
If a veteran dies because of an injury or illness from their service, surviving spouses may also qualify for benefits, such as a survivor’s pension. It’s also known as a death pension and does not incur any estate taxes when it is paid to the spouses and children of veterans.
Pensions, on the other hand, can support military families on behalf of a deceased veteran.
The Department of Veterans Affairs handles these benefits and helps former military members find new careers, get support for their businesses, and more.
Purpose of Aid and Attendance Benefits
Aid and attendance benefits are available to those with a VA pension. Health care can be expensive, particularly if you have a permanent disability. These benefits are added to your standard pension as supplemental income to cover assistance at home or in a facility.
Aid and Attendance (A&A) benefits are available to those who need help doing everyday activities like getting dressed, preparing food, and more. They are also available to any person who must stay in bed or live in a nursing home because of illness. Those with limited eyesight can also qualify.
Veterans who are unable to leave their homes can receive Housebound Aid benefits, which are a little different from Aid and Attendance benefits. An elder law attorney in Los Angeles has the legal tools to help you obtain the benefits you are entitled to.
How to Qualify
There are several ways to become eligible for these benefits. If you are bedbound, have significantly limited eyesight, or are staying in a nursing home, you can receive financial assistance for your health care needs.
Once you know you are eligible, you can apply for the said benefits. In addition to filling out forms, you can also include evidence like a letter from your doctor, details about your daily routine, and information about your disability.
There is also an asset test that determines whether or not you qualify for this financial assistance. While assets like a primary residence and vehicles aren’t counted, other assets like a savings account may be.
The VA allows applicants to transfer income or assets to qualify for Aid and Attendance. However, transferring assets could disqualify you from Medi-Cal eligibility in the future, so keep this in mind during the application process.
An experienced attorney can help service members get the benefits they deserve. The paperwork associated with Aid and Attendance benefits is extensive, but a lawyer can make sure the paperwork is complete and accurate—increasing the chances that you will be approved.
Receiving resources from the VA can mean a significant improvement in your quality of life. With the help of an attorney, you can get the financial support you need.
Veterans Benefits as Part of Your Estate Plan
Your veteran’s benefits can be a significant asset for your family members. However, it may be confusing to determine how your benefits fit into traditional estate planning services without professional legal assistance.
Estate planning documents allow you to divide your assets, declare your final wishes, and even assign important roles like power of attorney (POA), which comes into play when you are unable to handle your own affairs.
A legal will is a great place to start, and it allows you to distribute property, bank accounts, and more.
One important benefit of a will is that it allows you to designate one or more legal guardians for minor children in case you and your spouse are unable to care for them. If you are on active duty, this can give you peace of mind.
You can also create a living will that puts into writing your wishes for medical care if you become incapacitated. This includes resuscitation, being put on a ventilator, and even things like organ donation.
If you want your beneficiaries to access their inheritances easily, a trust can help. This allows you to avoid probate court and certain estate taxes—and offers more control over how inheritances are distributed. It can keep assets safe for children and other beneficiaries.
When you plan ahead, you can ensure total control over your estate and how it helps your loved ones. Our legal team aims to empower veterans and help them care for loved ones.
Getting Legal Help
Creating an estate plan is a complex task, even if your finances are relatively simple. Planning as a veteran can be even more complicated if you try to handle it on your own. However, with the help of a professional, you can make sure that everything will go as planned.
When you hire a lawyer, look for someone who is a member of the American Bar Association (ABA) or its state equivalent. McKenzie Legal & Financial is a law firm specializing in estate planning for veterans.
Our estate planning attorney is accredited by the United States Veterans Administration and has specialized knowledge of veteran affairs. Our attorney also has decades of experience in financial planning. Together, we can make smart financial decisions that will help you care for and protect your family.
Schedule a free estate planning phone consultation, contact us at 562-526-6941 at McKenzie Legal & Financial today!