Skip to Content
Your browser is out of date. To use this website, please update your browser or use a different device.
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Past rates: 2019 VA pension rates for Veterans

View 2019 VA pension rates for Veterans (effective December 1, 2018), including VA Aid and Attendance rates. If you qualify for these benefits, we’ll base your payment amount on the difference between your countable income and a limit that Congress sets—called the Maximum Annual Pension Rate, or MAPR.

Want to see current VA pension rates for Veterans?
Get rates for the current year

  • Your countable income is how much you earn, including your Social Security benefits, investment and retirement payments, and any income your dependents receive. Some expenses, like non-reimbursable medical expenses (medical expenses not covered by your insurance provider), may reduce your countable income.

  • Your MAPR amount is the maximum amount of pension payable. Your MAPR is based on how many dependents you have, if you’re married to another Veteran who qualifies for a pension, and if your disabilities qualify you for Housebound or Aid and Attendance benefits. MAPRs are adjusted each year for cost-of-living increases. You can find your current MAPR amount using the tables below.

Example: You’re a qualified Veteran with a dependent, non-Veteran spouse and no children. You also qualify for Aid and Attendance benefits based on your disabilities. You and your spouse have a combined yearly income of $10,000.
Your MAPR amount = $26,766
Your yearly income = $10,000
Your VA pension = $16,766 for the year (or $1,397 paid each month)

What’s the net worth limit to be eligible for Veterans Pension benefits?

From December 1, 2018, to November 30, 2019, the net worth limit to be eligible for Veterans Pension benefits was $127,061.

On October 18, 2018, we changed the way we assess net worth to make the pension entitlement rules clearer. Net worth includes your and your spouse’s assets and annual income. When you apply for Veterans Pension benefits, you’ll need to report all of these assets and income.

Note: If your child's net worth is more than the net worth limit, we don't consider them to be a dependent when we determine your pension.

Read our definitions below:

Assets

Assets include the fair market value of all your real and personal property, minus the amount of any mortgages you may have. “Real property” means any land and buildings you may own. Your personal property assets include any of these items:

  • Investments (like stocks and bonds)
  • Furniture
  • Boats

Assets don’t include:

  • Your primary residence (the home where you live most or all of the time)
  • Your car
  • Basic home items like appliances that you wouldn’t take with you if you moved to a new house

Read more about how we define "assets"

Annual income

Annual income is the money earned in a year from a job or from retirement or annuity payments. It includes any of these:

  • Salary or hourly pay
  • Bonuses
  • Commissions
  • Overtime
  • Tips

We'll subtract certain expenses from your annual income when we assess net worth. We call these applicable deductible expenses. They include:

  • Educational expenses
  • Medical expenses you’re not reimbursed for

Read more about how we define “annual income”

An example of net worth and eligibility

If you had $121,000 in assets and $14,000 in annual income, then your net worth would be $135,000. This is more than the net worth limit of $127,061. So you wouldn’t be eligible for Veterans Pension benefits.

What’s the 3-year look-back period for asset transfers?

When we receive a pension claim, we review the terms and conditions of any assets the Veteran may have transferred in the 3 years before filing the claim.

If you transfer assets for less than fair market value during the look-back period, and those assets would have pushed your net worth above the limit for a VA pension, you may be subject to a penalty period of up to 5 years. You won’t be eligible for pension benefits during this time.

Note: This new policy took effect on October 18, 2018. If you filed your claim before this date, the look-back period doesn’t apply. (A look-back period never includes a date before October 18, 2018.)

What’s a penalty period?

A penalty period is a length of time when a Veteran isn’t eligible for pension benefits because they transferred assets for less than fair market value during the look-back period. We won’t pay pension benefits during a penalty period. The penalty period rate is $2,230.

Find your Maximum Annual Pension Rate (MAPR) amount

Date of cost-of-living increase: December 1, 2018
Increase factor: 2.8%
Standard Medicare deduction: Actual amount will be determined by SSA based on individual income.

For Veterans with no dependents:

If you have no dependents and… Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $)
If you have no dependents and… You don’t qualify for Housebound or Aid and Attendance benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 13,535
If you have no dependents and… You qualify for Housebound benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 16,540
If you have no dependents and… You qualify for Aid and Attendance benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 22,577

Note:
If you have medical expenses, you may deduct only the amount that’s above 5% of your MAPR amount ($676 for a Veteran with no spouse or child).

For Veterans with at least 1 dependent spouse or child:

If you have 1 dependent and… Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $)
If you have 1 dependent and… You don’t qualify for Housebound or Aid and Attendance benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 17,724
If you have 1 dependent and… You qualify for Housebound benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 20,731
If you have 1 dependent and… You qualify for Aid and Attendance benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 26,766

Note:

  • If you have more than one dependent, add $2,313 to your MAPR amount for each additional dependent.
  • If you have a child who works, you may exclude their wages up to $12,200.
  • If you have medical expenses, you may deduct only the amount that’s above 5% of your MAPR amount ($886 for a Veteran with 1 dependent).

For 2 Veterans who are married to each other:

If you’re 2 Veterans who are married to each other and… Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $)
If you’re 2 Veterans who are married to each other and… Neither of you qualifies for Housebound or Aid and Attendance benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 17,724
If you’re 2 Veterans who are married to each other and… One of you qualifies for Housebound benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 20,731
If you’re 2 Veterans who are married to each other and… Both of you qualify for Housebound benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 23,734
If you’re 2 Veterans who are married to each other and… One of you qualifies for Aid and Attendance benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 26,766
If you’re 2 Veterans who are married to each other and… One of you qualifies for Housebound benefits and one of you qualifies for Aid and Attendance benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 29,764
If you’re 2 Veterans who are married to each other and… Both of you qualify for Aid and Attendance benefits Your MAPR amount is (in U.S. $) 35,813

Note:

  • If you have more than one dependent, add $2,313 to your MAPR amount for each additional child.
  • If you have a child who works, you may exclude their wages up to $12,200.
  • If you have medical expenses, you may deduct only the amount that’s above 5% of your MAPR amount ($886 for a Veteran with 1 dependent).

Full Title 38 regulations

Read full regulations from Title 38 Code of Federal Regulations:

3.23 Improved pension rates—Veterans and surviving spouses

3.24 Improved pension rates—surviving children

3.271 Computation of income

3.272 Exclusions from income

3.273 Rate computation

Last updated: