Military Vets May Face Loss of Nursing Home Benefits

Military Vets May Face Loss of Nursing Home Benefits

Disabled veterans who meet certain eligibility requirements can receive VA disability benefits to assist them in paying for nursing home or extended care expenses. Veterans that find themselves in any of the following categories are eligible for such benefits:

  • A veteran with a service-connected disability rating or combined disability ratings of seventy percent or higher
  • A veteran with a sixty percent disability rating who is found to be unemployable or to be “permanent and totally disabled”
  • A veteran with a disability clinically determined to necessitate nursing home or extended care
  • A veteran who does not have a service-related disability but who instead has a non-service-related disability and meets certain financial criteria

These extended care benefits can be used to pay for services at VA facilities like community living centers. If there are no VA facilities near a veteran, extended care benefits can be used to pay for private nursing home expenses as well. But that arrangement may be in jeopardy, according to a recent report.

Private Nursing Home Benefits in Jeopardy

In order for a veteran to be able to use his or her extended care benefits to cover the expenses associated with a private nursing home, that private nursing home must have a contract with the federal government. These contracts are typically renewable each year.

Recently, the federal government has mandated that private nursing homes seeking to enter into a new contract or renew an existing contract to provide services to disabled veterans must agree to pay their workers no less than $10.10 per hour. Nursing home facilities that choose not to do so may not have their federal contracts renewed. This means that disabled veterans residing at private nursing homes that choose not to renew their federal contracts will need to find other methods to pay for their care at the facility or find another facility.

A Legislative Fix May be in the Making

Congressional representatives are aware of the predicament this causes for many veterans and have discussed a legislative fix that would exempt the VA from federal contracting requirements. This would allow private extended care facilities to continue contracting with the VA without having to comply with ordinary federal contracting requirements (such as the requirement that the facility pay their employees at least $10.10 per hour). It is unclear, however, how soon such a legislative fix can be made.

Contact the Klok Law Firm for Assistance

Is your a loved one a veteran facing a need for long-term or extended care? Are you concerned about what – if any – extended care benefits your loved one may have available? Contact the Klok Law Firm LLC today for assistance. Our team of Charleston veterans’ disability benefits attorneys can help you understand the VA disability benefits you may be entitled to and help you obtain these benefits. Even if you have already been denied some or all VA disability benefits, we may be able to help. Contact us today by calling (843) 216-8860 or contacting us online.