Chapter 115 Public Assistance
Under Chapter 115 of Massachusetts General laws (MGL c 115 and 108 CMR 5.00) the Commonwealth provides a uniform program of financial and medical assistance for indigent veterans and their dependents. Qualifying veterans and their dependents receive necessary financial assistance for food, shelter, clothing, housing supplies, and medical care in accordance with a formula which takes into account the number of dependents and income from all sources. Eligible dependents of deceased veterans are provided with the same benefits as they would were the veteran still living.
Veterans, Spouses, and Widows
If your Income is below:
- Individual … $2,023 a month
- Couple … $2,743 a month
If your liquid asset total (which include money in bank accounts, stocks, bonds, and other property) is less than:
- Individual … $5,000
- Couple … $9,800
You MAY be eligible for benefits from the Woburn Veterans Service Office. Please call or visit the Veterans Office to see if you are eligible.
Low-income wartime veterans may be eligible to receive a pension from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Eligibility is income based, and veterans must be 65 years of age or older or be totally and permanently disabled.
- Death Pension. Certain low-income surviving spouses and children of deceased wartime veterans maybe entitled to receive a Death Pension from the U.S. Department of Veterans’ Affairs.
- Social Security Special Earnings for Military Service. Since 1957, if you had military service earnings for active duty (including active duty for training), you paid Social Security taxes on those earnings. Since 1988, inactive duty service in the Armed Forces reserves (such as weekend drills) has also been covered by Social Security. Under certain circumstances, these earnings may be credited to your Social Security benefits.
- Disability Compensation The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs offers a tax free benefit to veterans who currently have a disability that is the result of an injury, disease, or an event in military service. Applications and guidance are offered in the Woburn Veterans’ Services Department for those who are eligible.
- S-DVI – Application for 100% Service-Disabled Veterans Life Insurance.
- Form 21-526 EZ – Application for Disability Compensation and Related Compensation Benefits. Complete.
- Form 21-526 – Application for Disability Compensation and Related Compensation Benefits – incomplete.
- Concurrent Retirement and Disability Pay (CRDP) – allows military retirees to receive both military retired pay and Veterans Affairs (VA) compensation. This was prohibited until the CRDP program began on January 1, 2004. CRDP is a “phase in” of benefits that gradually restores a retiree’s VA disability offset. This means that an eligible retiree’s retired pay will gradually increase each year until the phase in is complete effective January 2014. You do not need to apply for CRDP. If qualified, you will be enrolled automatically.
- City of Woburn Tax Abatements for Disabled Veterans: Please call the Assessor’s Office at 781-897-5830 for more information.
Aid and Attendance
Aid and Attendance is a benefit paid by Veterans Affairs (VA) to veterans, veteran spouses or surviving spouses. It’s for reimbursable out of pocket MEDICAL expenses and is paid in addition to a veteran’s basic pension. Aid and Attendance is for applicants who needs financial help for in-home care, to pay for an assisted living facility or a nursing home. It is a non-service connected disability benefit, meaning the disability doesn’t have to be a result of service. You cannot receive non-service and service-connected compensation at the same time. Aid and Attendance benefits are paid to those applicants who:
- Meet service requirements
- Meet certain disability requirements
- Meet income and asset limitations
Qualifying Active Duty Service Dates
- Discharged from a branch of the United States Armed Forces under honorable conditions AND
- Served 90 days of continuous military service (active duty), with at least one day during the following wartime periods (did not have to serve in combat):
- World War II: December 7, 1941, through December 31, 1946
- Korean War: June 27, 1950, through January 31, 1955
- Vietnam War: August 5, 1964 (February 28, 1961, for veterans who served “in country” before August 5, 1964), through May 7, 1975
- Persian Gulf War: August 2, 1990, through a date to be set by Presidential Proclamation or Law.
If the veteran entered active duty after September 7, 1980, generally he/she must have served at least 24 months or the full period for which called or ordered to active duty (there are exceptions to this rule).
- Assets must be less than $80,000.00. Assets do not include your personal residence, automobile or other assets you use on a regular basis.
- Financial Need. In general there must be less income each year than the cost of care provided including the monthly charges by the assisted living or nursing facility, the cost of doctor’s appointment and prescription drugs (non-reimbursed amounts), medical supplies, eye glasses, haring aides, travel to doctor appointments, etc.
- Medical Diagnosis. There must be a medical reason why you cannot live independently and need regular assistance and care. Assistance with ADL’s, meals, transportation, housekeeping services up to full assisted living or nursing home care will qualify. Typically, if you reside in an assisted living facility you are already qualified in regard to need.
For more information you can also contact the Veteran Administration at 844-MyVA311: (844-698-2311) or visit their website at https://www.benefits.va.gov/pension/aid_attendance_housebound.asp.
Maximum Monthly Pension Benefit Plus Aid and Attendance
Married Couple $2230
Single Veteran $1881
Surviving Spouse $1209
Aid and Attendance Documents:
In addition to the VA forms, an applicant will need to gather the following documents:
- Marriage Certificate and Death Certificate (Surviving Spouses only)
- Asset Information (bank account statements, etc.)
- Verification of Income (social security award letter, and statements from pensions, IRAs, annuities, etc.)
- Proof of Medical Premiums (Insurance Statements, Medication or Medical bills that are not reimbursed by Medi-Cal or Medicare)
- Voided Check for Aid and Attendance Direct Deposit
Dependents’ and Survivors Benefits
Dependency and Indemnity Compensation
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs may issue monetary benefits to survivors of service members who died on active duty, died from service-related disabilities, or certain veterans who were being paid 100% disability compensation at time of death.
Headstones and Markers
Applications are available to receive Government issued headstones and markers to eligible veterans through The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Reimbursement for Burial Expenses
Eligible veterans maybe entitled to reimbursement of up to $2000 towards expenses for funeral and burial expenses.