The $400,000 Mistake Made by Veterans
Veterans who put their assets in an irrevocable trust in order to obtain the VA Aid & Attendance benefit of up to $2,120 monthly may be giving up the right to receive Medicaid benefits of $400,000* or more.
Irrevocable VA Trusts are often used by attorneys to reduce a veteran’s assets to a financial level acceptable by the Department of Veterans Affairs, in order to be eligible to receive the Aid & Attendance benefit. This strategy, while acceptable to the VA, is non-compliant for Medicaid purposes. What works for the VA because of their no look-back period does NOT work for Medicaid because of Medicaid’s 5-year look-back period.
The terrible truth of the VA Trust is revealed when the veteran needs Medicaid before the 5 year look-back period has expired. The crisis usually occurs within 3 years because statistics show that 75% of veterans who obtain the benefit will need Medicaid within the first 3 years of obtaining Aid & Attendance.
Many VA Trusts can’t be changed once established, thus denying the veteran Medicaid which could pay up to $7,000 per month. Some trusts can be changed, but at great expense. Why would a veteran pay several thousand dollars to establish a trust and then within 3 years pay several thousand more to get out of the trust?
Would you be surprised to learn there are simple solutions that let veterans obtain the benefit and remain Medicaid eligible? The experts at War Veterans Association of Colorado can explain the no-cost Medicaid compliant solutions for obtaining the VA Aid & Attendance tax-free benefit of up to $1,949 per month.
* 5 years of Medicaid at $6,400 per month (average cost of a nursing home in Colorado in 2011) plus inflation