As a Veteran you may qualify for certain Funeral benefits-BUT they don't come automatically. In most cases some one must request them. A funeral home can assist you with perparing your request before they are needed.
1.) The U S Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits do not cover all the funeral or cremation arrangements of Honorably Discharged Veterans Certain monetary, recognition and service benefits may be available, however, reimbursement for funeral & Creamation service expenses is limited & usually only applyto veterans who:
* Retire from the Armed Services, or
* Were disabled due to a service-related injury, or
* Died in a VA hospital or while in a nursing home under VA contract.
Standard guidelines are provided as an overview, but only the VA can rule on your exact benefits.
2.) Documentation you will need to verify your Military Service.
Normally you will be reqired to provide "Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, "DD Form 214) also known as discharge papers, to verify military service. If you can not provide this the Funeral home usally can help with an address for which to request a copy.
3.) A Veteran's Family must request a United States Flag.
It can be provided at no cost to drape the casket or accompany the urn of he deceased veteran. And is Generally given to the next of kin. Only one flag may be provided per Veteran. VA Form 21-2008 "Application for United States Flag for Burial Purposes" must be submitted along with a copy of the veterans discharge papers. Flags may be obtained from VA regional offices and most U S Post Offices, The funeral director or funeral home should help your family request for your flag.
4.) Military funeral honors ceremonies must be scheduled in advance.
The law entitles every eligible Veteran to recieve a military euneral ceremony, which includes the folding and the presentation of the U S Flag and the playing of "TAPS" upon the family's request.
The Department of Defense calls for the funeral director tp request the military honors on behalf of the veterans family.
5.) A Veterans' casket is not free.
As a standard policy, neither the VA nor the various branches of service provide a free caskets for a deceased veteran, unless death occurs while on active duty.
though some funeral homes may offer caskets at a discounted price to members of the American Legion or Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).
6.) A "Presidential Memorial Certificate" must be requested.
A program intitated in MARCH 1962 by then President John F. Kennedy, an engraved certificate signed by the current sitting President is provided to the family to honor the memory of said honorably discharged, deceased veteran.
Eligible recioients or someone acting in their behalf, may apply in person at any VA regional office or by U S Mail, and in some cases the funeral home can assist in obtaining this certificate.
7.) If you chose not to be buried in a VA National Cemetery, the monetary benefits are limited.
Veterans buried in a private cemetery may be eligible to recieve a partial reimbursement for their burial cost.
In order to determine the final reimbursement amount, an "APPLICATION FOR BURIAL BENEFITS" VA Form 21-530 must be submitted within (2) TWO YEARS from the date of the veterans permanent burial.
8.) There are eligibility requiremnets for burila in a VA NATIONAL CEMETERY.
Any member of the Armed Forces who dies while on active duty or any veteran who was discharged under condotions other than dishonorable is entitled to burial in a VA NATIONAL CEMETERY. AND, Under certain conditions, the surviving spouse and minor children of an eligible Veteran may also be entitled to the same.
In addition, non-veteran parents may be interred in a National Cemetery with their child if that child was killed in combat and has no other eligible survivors.
9.) Headstone or markers for a burial space in a private cemetery must be requested.
The VA, upon request and at no charge to the applicant, will furnish a government headstone or marker for the grave of any deceased Honorable Discharged U S Veteran in any cemetery in the world. But, it must be requested using VA Form 40-1330.
10.) The issuance or replacement of Military Service Metals, Awards and Dcorations must be requested in Writing.
For deceased veterans, requests for medals will be accepted from the next-of-kin. Request should be submitted in writing using Standard Form 180 (SF-180) to the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC). Ther is generally no charge for metal or award replacements.
For more information, or the mailing address of the military branch office to submit your request to,