Reimbursement of Burial Expenses
The family's of veterans are eligible for the reimbursement of burial expenses. These include, but are not limited to:
- The VA will provide a burial allowance of up to $2,000 if the veteran's death results from their service
- VA will also cover the cost of transporting the remains; they will deliver the remains to the closest national cemetery with available gravesites to the home of the deceased.
- For those that are entitled to receive pension or compensation, VA will pay a $300 burial and funeral expense allowance
- VA will pay a $150 plot allowance for any veteran that is not buried in a cemetery that is under U.S. Government jurisdiction. This applies if the veteran is discharged from active duty due to a disability that was incurred or aggravated in the line of duty. If the veteran is buried without charge for the cost of a plot, this $150 plot allowance may be paid to the state.
For any veteran or individual that is entitled to retired military pay, VA will provide an American flag to be draped over the casket or to go alongside the urn containing the cremated remains.
Burial in National Cemeteries VA Cemeteries
Burial benefits in a VA national cemetery include the gravesite and the perpetual care that comes afterwards. Additionally, there are many national cemeteries that have columbaria for the inurnment of cremated remains. Some also provide special gravesites for the burial of cremated remains. When these options are taken, the government will also provide headstones and markers.
Gravesites in national cemeteries cannot be reserved. Funeral directors or others making burial arrangements must apply at the time of death. Reservations made under previous programs are honored. The National Cemetery System normally does not conduct burials on weekends. A weekend caller, however, will be directed to on of three strategically located VA cemetery offices that remain open during weekends to schedule burials at the cemetery of the caller's choice during the following week.
Headstones and Markers
VA provides headstones and markers for the unmarked graves of veterans anywhere in the world and for eligible dependents of veterans buried in national, state veteran or military cemeteries.
Flat bronze, flat granite, flat marble, upright granite and upright marble types are available to mark the grave in a style consistent with the place of burial. Niche markers also are available to mark columbaria used for inurnment of cremated remains.