What Are VA Burial Allowances?
VA burial allowances are partial reimbursements of an eligible veteran's burial and funeral costs. When the cause of death is not service-related, the reimbursements are generally described as two payments: (1) a burial and funeral expense allowance, and (2) a plot interment allowance.
Who Is Eligible?
You may be eligible for a VA burial allowance if:
- you paid for a veteran's burial or funeral AND
- you have not been reimbursed by another government agency or some other source, such as the deceased veteran's employer AND
- the veteran was discharged under conditions other than dishonorable.
In addition, at least one of the following conditions must be met:
- the veteran died because of a service-related disability OR
- the veteran was receiving VA pension or compensation at the time of death OR
- the veteran was entitled to receive VA pension or compensation, but decided not to reduce his/her military retirement or disability pay OR
- the veteran died in a VA hospital, in a nursing home under VA contract, or while in an approved state nursing home.
How Much Does VA Pay?
Service-Related Death. VA will pay up to $2,000 toward burial expenses for deaths on or after September 11, 2001. VA will pay up to $1,500 for deaths prior to September 10, 2001. If the veteran is buried in a VA national cemetery, some or all of the cost of transporting the deceased may be reimbursed.
Nonservice-Related Death. VA will pay up to $300 toward burial and funeral expenses, and a $300 plot-interment allowance for deaths on or after December 1, 2001. The plot-interment allowance is $150 for deaths prior to December 1, 2001. If the death happened while the veteran was in a VA hospital or under VA contracted nursing home care, some or all of the costs for transporting the deceased's remains may be reimbursed.
Burial Benefits may include:
Burial in national cemeteries
Presidential Memorial Certificates
Military funeral honors
Flags to drape caskets of deceased veterans
Headstones and markers
The Department of Veterans Affairs does not provide honors at national cemeteries. The family or funeral director is responsible for coordinating military honors. For non-retiree veterans, the Dept. of Defense will provide a two-person honors team to provide taps and flag folding only. For retired veterans, the Dept.of Defense will provide full honors including a firing party.
Telephone: Army 502-624-6051 (Ft. Knox)
Air Force 937-257-8964 (Wright Patt AFB)
Navy 866-203-7791 (Dept. of Navy Funeral Honors)
US Marine Corp 703-432-9524 (USMC Funeral Honors)
For the Dayton National Cemetery call 262-2115. For internment at Dayton National, families can choose the option above or the local Dayton National Cemetery Honor Squad which will also provide the firing party.
For private cemeteries, the family can choose the options above, or arrange for a local Veterans Organization to do honors through the funeral home.