Burial Benefits for Veterans

The veteran population is very important part of our society. This is why most US veterans are made eligible for numerous burial and memorial benefits. This is made possible through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) National Cemetery Administration.

Burial at a National Cemetery or a Private Cemetery

For veterans who pass away, they are eligible for military funeral honors, burial flags, headstones and markers and Presisdential Memorial certificates– all these are offered without any costs. Although they are generally eligible to be buried in national or state cemeteries across the country, veterans who are buried in private cemeteries can still avail of the same services mentioned above, also at zero costs.

A veteran’s spouse and a minor child are also eligible to be buried at national or state cemeteries; however, they are not entitled to free burial services.

Schedule a Burial

It is important for the bereaved family members to set a schedule at a VA national cemetery in order for them to receive the free burial services. To do this, the family can call 1-800-535-1117. Make sure that before calling the VA, you already have a cemetery of choice, a type of religious emblem for the headstone, the funeral director’s contact details and other information about the burial.

You can also fax all discharge documentation to 1-866-900-6417 or email the details to NCA.Scheduling@va.gov

Life Insurance and Survivor Benefits for Servicemembers and Veterans

It is important for the service members and veterans, as well as their families, to know whom to contact to avail of their life insurance and survivor benefits.

Life Insurance is automatically signed up for service members in the military. For other veterans, they have an opportunity to purchase a veteran’s life insurance for a limited time following their discharge from service.

For military retirees, their pensions only end upon death; otherwise, they need to sign up for the Survivor Benefit plan upon their retirement.

For active-duty retirees, they are entitled to enroll in the Uniformed Services Survivor Benefit Plan or SBP.

On the other hand, Reserves and National Guard retirees can avail of the Reserve Component Survivor Benefit Plan or the RC-SBP.

For the survivors of a Department of Defense Military retiree, it is important to immediately report the military retiree’s death to the Defense Finance and Accounting Service or DFAS. For the survivors of a Coast Guard retiree, they are to get a hold of the Coast Guard Pay and Personnel Center.

Benefits for Survivors of Veterans

Benefits do not only apply to the veterans, but for the dependents or survivor of a service member or veteran as well. These individuals are eligible for a variety of survivor benefits and services offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) if their death or total-disability is service-related.

The eligibility for VA benefits can aslo be applied to individuals who are beneficiaries of the Survivor Benefit Plan.

For more information, you can directly contact the VA.