All veterans are entitled to burial in a national cemetery, a granite or marble headstone (regardless of the cemetery), and a flag.
Who is eligible?
To be eligible you must be a veteran discharged or separated from active duty under conditions other than dishonorable, and have completed the required period of service. U.S. Armed Forces members who die on active duty are also eligible, as are spouses and dependent children of eligible living and deceased veterans, and of current and deceased armed forces members.
How do I apply?
Veterans’ benefits are not paid automatically, so it is your responsibility to contact the Veteran’s Administration. For prompt handling of your claim, be sure to have the following information ready:
- Social Security number for yourself and your dependent children
- Certified copy of original DD214 (Enlisted Record and Report of Separation)
- Certified copy of Death Certificate
- Verification of the life insurance amount you will receive as a result of veteran’s death
- Paid receipts for hospital and doctor bills incurred by last illness, if applicable
- Paid receipts for funeral and cemetery expenses
- If either yourself or the veteran was previously married, provide a certified copy of the original divorce decree or death certificate proving the previous marriage was dissolved by divorce or death
- If there are dependent children, you will need an original birth certificate for each child under 18 or over 18 if full-time student
- If over 18 and still in school, you will need to fill out VA Form 21-674
- If you or the veteran receive Social Security Benefits, the exact amount must be reported
- If you already have a VA claim number, you must furnish the claim number you have been assigned
- If you or the veteran receive additional income, the source and exact amount must be reported
For more information, contact the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at 1-800-827-1000.