VA Aid & Attendance Scams

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The Third-Party Annuity Scam

Opportunity knocks for an unscrupulous insurance agent when a family seeks an assisted living facility for a family member who is a veteran or who was married to a veteran.  One of the questions all assisted living facilities will ask of families is, “did you or your spouse ever serve in the military?”  If the answer is “yes” the facility could receive over $2,000 per month from the Department of Veterans Affairs towards the cost of care for the family member.  Many insurance agents heavily market to assisted living facilities with the promise of obtaining benefits for Veterans.  Assisted living facilities need to fill rooms.  That combination can be detrimental to the family seeking care for their loved one.

If a veteran is over-resourced, he can’t obtain the VA Aid & Attendance benefit.  To solve this problem, an unscrupulous or uninformed insurance agent will offer to transfer assets to a third party, often a family member, through an annuity sale to a son or daughter.  While this transfer does qualify the veteran for the benefit, the transfer creates a large problem for the majority of veterans who, usually in a very short time, will need Medicaid.  The third-party annuity paid a commission to the insurance agent, but made the Veteran ineligible for Medicaid.

War Veterans Association is fully aware of all the pitfalls and loopholes and will never endanger the future benefits of a Veteran or family member.  Our experts are licensed and insured and fully educated about the hidden details involved in obtaining Aid and Attendance.  War Veterans Association is backed by Income Specialists of Colorado who holds an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.  We have never received a single complaint in almost 20 years of doing business.

The VA Trust Scam

As mentioned in the Third Party Annuity Scam, One of the questions all assisted living facilities will ask of families is “did you or your spouse ever serve in the military?”  A positive response could mean over $2000 per month from the VA towards the cost of care.  Often a family decides to consult an attorney for assistance in obtaining the VA Aid & Attendance benefit.  Some attorneys may recommend strategies for obtaining the VA benefit that are more in the interest of the attorney than the client.

A common strategy recommended by some attorneys is to move excess assets into an irrevocable trust in order to obtain the VA benefit.  Unfortunately, the client may be giving up the right to receive Medicaid benefits of up to $400,000 or more.

Irrevocable VA Trusts are often used by attorneys to reduce the assets of veterans to a financial level acceptable by the VA.  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, which employs a five-year look-back period.

The terrible truth of the VA Trust is revealed when the veteran needs Medicaid before the five-year look-back period has expired.  The crisis is usually revealed within 3 years because 75% of veterans who obtain the Aid & Attendance pension will need Medicaid within the first three years of obtaining the benefit.

Therefore, if the veteran should go on to a nursing home and needs to apply for Medicaid within five years, the trust established for VA purposes can cause Medicaid disqualification.  Family members of veterans should not lose sight of the fact that the veteran may need Medicaid to pay for a nursing home one day.

Some 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 many thousands of dollars to an attorney in order to establish a trust and then within 3 years pay several thousand more to get out of the trust?

You can avoid these crises with the simple solutions available from War Veterans Association.  We never lose sight of the probable future need for Medicaid.  We are not lawyers and do not charge lawyers’ fees.  We are licensed with the VA and the State, and we know how to qualify Veterans for Aid and Attendance without risking future Medicaid benefits.  We charge only a nominal fee to process the paperwork to receive Aid and Attendance and we guarantee we will not endanger future Medicaid eligibility.

By Richard Dorrough

Call 888-775-7743 for assistance in filing your veterans benefits claim.

To get started or for more information please call (303) 829-0205

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