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How To Make The Most Of Your Veterans Benefits

How To Make The Most Of Your Veterans Benefits

March 15, 2021

Most veterans are well aware of the healthcare and typical education benefits available for servicemembers and their families. But there are less well-known military benefits that could be extremely useful to veterans and their spouses and children.

At 1on1 Financial, we want to make sure that veterans continue to utilize all the military benefits available to them to their greatest advantage. Below is a list of some of the lesser-known veteran benefits with explanations about how to use them to protect you and your family. 

Long-Term Care Benefits  

For some reason, the Aid and Attendance program, available through the Department of Veterans Affairs, is less well known than some of the other veteran benefit programs. But for veterans who qualify to receive a pension and served during wartime, this benefit is very helpful for paying for long-term care in the nursing home or at home. It is also available for the spouses of these veterans. (1)

While this benefit may not be relevant for you now, it can be particularly beneficial in funding long-term care for parents who served during war and their spouses. And it is certainly helpful to consider when you are planning for your own long-term care. Long-term care is truly expensive, and although this benefit won’t cover the full amount of long-term care, it will help reduce overall costs. 

The Aid and Attendance tacks on to the Basic Veterans/Survivors pension. This means for a qualifying veteran without a spouse or dependent child, they are eligible to receive $23,238 a year in benefits. The maximum benefit for a surviving spouse is $14,934. (2)

Life Insurance Benefits 

You are probably familiar with Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance (SGLI) and Veterans’ Group Life Insurance (VGLI), but there are actually a few different life insurance options available to veterans. For example, if you are a member of the American Armed Forces Mutual Aid Association (AAFMAA), you have the option to purchase term life insurance through this association. The AAFMAA offers up to $800,000 in term life insurance. (3)

If you already have VGLI, you may also purchase USAA Life Insurance as a form of supplemental coverage or purchase it as your primary life insurance. (4) With USAA, veterans can roll over some of his or her coverage from the SGLI coverage and allow a term life event option rider, which will allow veterans to increase coverage for major life events, such as marriage, buying a house, or the birth of a child. (5)

Extra Education Benefits 

The GI education benefits are very well known, and as a veteran, they are quite possibly one of the main reasons that you entered the military in the first place. However, it is important to remember that any unused credits offered through the GI Bill may be transferred to spouses or dependents of veterans. This benefit can save you thousands when paying for tuition for a child. It can also help pay for your spouse’s degree if they want to continue their education. (6)

College is not for everyone, and with unemployment as high as it is, it is important to remember that the GI educational credits can be used to receive training in vocational or tech training programs. The GI Bill can be used for credits toward HVAC repair, truck driving, emergency medical training, and barber or beautician school. Non-degree programs that are also in high demand, such as coding, are also available for veterans through the VET-TEC program. (7)

We’re Here To Help

If you are a veteran, we can help you discover what other benefits are available to you and hammer out some of the finer details of your financial plan. Call our office today at 909-981-1720 or simply click here to schedule a free 15-minute introductory phone call!

About 1on1 Financial

1on1 Financial is an independent financial advisory firm specializing in guiding working and retired professionals, executives, and business owners along the path to financial well-being. Founded in 1997, we use a team approach to help our clients accumulate wealth, generate income, preserve their life savings, and strategically plan for the distribution of their estate. With more than 50 years of combined experience in the financial services industry, we remain true to our fundamental mission: to provide personalized guidance, treatment, care, and service so our clients can gain control of their future and feel confident in their financial life.