Survivors of any person who was an active or retired member of the military at time of death, or an honorably discharged veteran, could be eligible for a number of benefits, including:
- An American flag (usually drapes the casket).
- Burial in a National Cemetery.
- A bronze or granite marker.
- A lump sum payment of $300 is usually available to families of those veterans that were entitled to receive VA compensation or pension at time of death (such as retirees), or veterans who died while a registered patient in a VA hospital or other accredited VA facility. If one of these circumstance's apply and a National Cemetery is not utilized, up to $300 could be reimbursed as a plot or interment allowance (requires proof of payment to a non-VA cemetery. Private cemeteries usually assist you by filing this benefit in your behalf). For veterans who die of a service connected disability, the VA could pay an allowance to reimburse funeral costs of $2,000 or less (no additional VA death benefits would be available). Active duty military personnel are usually entitled to a greater amount, which can vary. This benefit is usually paid by the Department of Defense.
A surviving spouse is eligible for burial in the National Cemetery. Dependent children of the veteran are also eligible.
Claims for Veteran's Benefits must be filed within 2 years of death by the veteran's family, a non-family member who can prove that the veteran's funeral services are paid, or the funeral director. We will be pleased to make application for these benefits on your behalf if you will provide us with the veteran's Honorable Discharge papers. For VA Assistance and Information, phone (800) 827-1000 or visit their website at www.va.gov.