The Veterans Administration has many benefits available to those who served our country. Those benefits can be anything from Education and Training to Compensation and/or Pension to Medical Treatment and Burial Benefits.
One common type of benefit is the Disability Benefit. There are two types of Disability Benefits: Compensation & Pension.
Compensation is NOT needs-based (YAY! No income or asset tests) but you must be at least 10% disabled as a result of your military service.
Pension IS needs-based (meaning you have limited income/assets and are either permanently disabled or over age 65).
The Compensation benefit requires a disability determination and percentage (from 10% to 100%). For this type of claim, prove 2 things: military service and medical records to support your claim that your disability was service connected. Here are some examples of the Compensation pay rate scale (Veteran only):
10% disability = $133.57 per month 50% disability = $838.64 100% disability = $2915.15
Note: Veterans with dependents (spouse, parent(s), and/or children) may qualify for more! Widows of Veterans eligible for Compensation may qualify for DIC benefits.
Veterans or Widows can apply for Compensation benefits …
The Pension benefit is for Veterans or Widows of Veterans who served at least one day during a wartime period with at least 90 days of active duty and have been honorably discharged from duty*. Since the Pension benefit IS needs-based, claimants must verify eligibility for this program. For those needing assistance with their activities of daily living (ADLs), they can get more cash because their Maximum Annual Pension Rate (MAPR) (income limit) is higher! This is referred to as the Aid & Attendance or Housebound Assistance increase. There is no separate application for Aid & Attendance or Housebound Assistance. However, VA will require additional documentation to prove the Veteran or Widow requires this additional assistance.
The current income limit for the Pension benefit can range from $8,656 to $13,836 for widows and ranges from $12,907 to $21,531 for Veterans.
GOOD NEWS! The Pension benefit takes into account any unreimbursed medical expenses the Veteran or Widow incurs. These unreimbursed medical expenses reduce the total income counted against the limit (MAPR) and means more money can be paid to you.
Note: Veterans with dependents (spouse, parent(s), and/or children) may qualify for more. Widows of Veterans eligible for Widow’s Pension.
Veterans or Widows can apply for the Pension benefit …
- By completing and mailing (or hand-delivering) the VA Form 21-534EZ form with supporting documentation to the nearest Regional Benefit Office. We provide the necessary forms on our website to assist with this application, you may also apply online.
Your Arizona Regional Benefit Office is located at 3333 N. Central Avenue in Phoenix. Phone number: 1-800-827-1000 | Website: www.va.gov