38 CFR § 3.275 - How VA determines the asset amount for pension net worth determinations.
(a) Definitions pertaining to assets -
(1) Assets. The term assets means the fair market value of all property that an individual owns, including all real and personal property, unless excluded under paragraph (b) of this section, less the amount of mortgages or other encumbrances specific to the mortgaged or encumbered property. VA will consider the terms of the recorded deed or other evidence of title to be proof of ownership of a particular asset. See also § 3.276(a)(4), which defines “fair market value.”
(i) Except as provided in paragraph (a)(2)(ii) of this section, for the purposes of this section and § 3.276, claimant means a pension beneficiary, a dependent spouse, or a dependent or potential dependent child as described in § 3.274(d), as well as a veteran, surviving spouse, or surviving child pension applicant.
(3) Residential lot area. For purposes of this section, residential lot area means the lot on which a residence sits that does not exceed 2 acres (87,120 square feet), unless the additional acreage is not marketable.
(b) Exclusions from assets. Assets do not include the following:
(1) Primary residence. The value of a claimant's primary residence (single-family unit), including the residential lot area, in which the claimant has an ownership interest. VA recognizes one primary residence per claimant. If the residence is sold after pension entitlement is established, any net proceeds from the sale is an asset except to the extent the proceeds are used to purchase another residence within the same calendar year as the year in which the sale occurred.
(ii) Claimant not residing in primary residence. Although rental income counts as annual income as provided in § 3.271(d), VA will not include a claimant's primary residence as an asset even if the claimant resides in any of the following as defined in § 3.278(b):
(A) A nursing home or medical foster home;
(B) A care facility other than a nursing home; or
(C) The home of a family member for health care or custodial care.
(2) Personal effects. Value of personal effects suitable to and consistent with a reasonable mode of life, such as appliances and family transportation vehicles.
(4) Ricky Ray Hemophilia Relief Fund payments. Payments made under section 103(c) and excluded under section 103(h)(2) of the Ricky Ray Hemophilia Relief Fund Act of 1998.
(5) Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program payments. Payments made under the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program.
(6) Payments to Aleuts. Payments made to certain Aleuts under 50 U.S.C. App. 1989c-5.
(7) Statutory exclusions. Other amounts excluded from assets by statute. See § 3.279. VA will exclude from assets any amount designated by statute as not countable as a resource, regardless of whether or not it is listed in this section or in § 3.279.
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