As a Veteran, you may be concerned about how your family will pay for your funeral someday. Before you make plans, consider your death benefits from the VA. Veterans, service members, spouses, and dependents may be eligible for burial in a VA national cemetery. Many benefits come with burial in a national cemetery.
Let’s look at whether you may be eligible for Veteran burial in a National Cemetery and what other benefits may be included.
There are many ways to qualify for burial in a National Cemetery. If you are included in the list below, you are eligible for burial in a National Cemetery:
- Any Veteran who didn’t receive a dishonorable discharge (You can apply for a discharge upgrade and possibly become eligible)
- A service member who died on active duty or training duty (active or inactive)
- Spouse of a Veteran, even if the Veteran died first
- Minor aged child of a Veteran, even if the Veteran died first
- An unmarried adult dependent child of a Veteran (may qualify)
Benefits of Burial in a National Cemetery
As a Veteran or family, there are benefits that our nation owes to you for the time and energy you placed into your service. The people of our nation owe you for the risks to your life and family. These are not insignificant contributions to the life, liberty, and happiness of everyone who enjoys life in the US. Because of your sacrifice, our nation owes you and your family a debt of gratitude.
One small way our nation hopes to repay your service is through the honor of a military funeral with the largest expenses already taken care of. The benefits of a national cemetery burial include:
- Burial in a national cemetery (subject to available space)
- Adjacent gravesite(s) for spouse and dependent(s)
- Grave liner/vault
- Opening and closing of the grave
- Grave caretaking services
- Government headstone or marker
- Presidential Memorial Certificate (apply for an engraved certificate signed by the current president)
- Military funeral honors for Veterans
- Burial at sea for Navy Veterans
You can also apply for a United States flag to drape over a casket or coffin or place with an urn.
Planning a National Cemetery Burial
If you have a pre-need letter, your funeral director can call the National Cemetery Scheduling Office and care for all details. Your family will only need to prepare for attending the funeral and the work of grieving your loss.
If you do not have a preneed letter yet, you can prepare for a Veteran funeral at a national cemetery. Apply now for a preneed letter using your discharge papers and other identifying information. See Veteran’s Administration: Schedule a Burial for specific details to apply for your preneed letter.
Preparing in advance for your Veteran Funeral can make all the difference to your grieving family. Loved ones are often too distraught to take care of the details. Planning a funeral can be an overwhelming task for family members who are numb with loss.
Preplanning can also care for your family financially by paying in advance for any expenses. With planning a Veteran funeral, your family is taken care of without any additional expense. Major expenses are covered by the Veteran’s Administration due to your sacrificial service to our country.
Preplanning your funeral is a gift to your family that gives them your care when they need it the most.
Veteran Burial in Other Cemeteries
Burial allowances for funeral expenses and a plot or interment are also available for Veterans. If you wish to be buried somewhere other than a National Cemetary, consider the burial costs for other cemeteries. You can apply through the Veteran’s Administration for your burial allowance. This death benefit covers burial, funeral, and transportation costs.
You are eligible for a Burial Allowance as:
- The Veteran’s surviving spouse (including same-sex marriages.)
- The surviving partner of a legal union
- A surviving child of the Veteran
- A parent of the Veteran
- The executor or administrator of the Veteran’s estate
If you are a Veteran or a family member, planning in advance for burial at a National Cemetery can make life easier for your family. You care for your loved ones by thinking about these details in advance. Preplanning helps them not worry about whether your wishes are honored. Your preparation can keep them from having to plan during their grief and feelings of loss.
At Renaissance Funeral Home, we offer complete services for your Veteran funeral plans, including all preparations. We care about the details so that you and your family don’t have to worry. We want to help your loved ones remember their relationship with you and the significance of your life together.
Contact us today to preplan a Veteran funeral in a national cemetery or handle a current loss. We want to hear from you and would love to give you a tour of our facilities, including our new cremation tribute center.