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Did You Know?

Burial Expenses Reimbursed        

Did you know VA will pay burial allowances up to $2,000 if the veteran’s death is service-connected?  In such cases, the person who bore the veteran’s burial expenses may claim reimbursement form VA.


In some cases, VA will pay the cost of transporting the remains of a veteran whose death was service-connected to the nearest National Cemetery with available gravesites.  There is no time limit for filing reimbursement claims in service-connected cases.


Burial Allowance
Did you know VA will pay $300 burial and funeral allowances for veterans who, at the time of death, were entitled to receive pension or compensation or would have been entitled if they were not receiving military retirement pay?  Eligibility also may be established when death occurs in a VA facility, a VA-contracted nursing home or State Veterans nursing home.  In cases in which the veteran’s death was not service-connected, claims must be filed within two years after burial or cremation.


Download VA Burial and Memorial Products Quick Start Guide












Obtaining A Burial Flag

Did you know the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides a free burial flag to drape the casket or urn of deceased veterans who served honorably? The flag is often given to the next of kin as a keepsake after a funeral service. A flag can be issued to a funeral director or anyone else who certifies the eligibility of the deceased veteran. To streamline the process of getting a Burial Flag, applications should be completed as soon as possible and submitted to the post office.


Download Burial Flag application


Death Pension
Did you know VA provides pensions to low-income surviving spouses and unmarried children of deceased veterans with wartime service?
Eligibility depends upon spouse not remarrying and children must be under 18, or under age 23 if attending a VA-approved school, or have become permanently incapable of self-support because of disability before age 18.

A surviving spouse may be entitled to a higher income limit if living in a nursing home, in need of the aid and attendance of another person or permanently housebound. 


Download VA Survivor and Burial Benefits Kit   

Veteran Health Registries             

Did you know certain veterans can participate in a VA health registry and receive free medical examinations, including laboratory and other diagnostic tests deemed necessary by an examining clinician?  VA maintains health registries to provide special health examinations and health-related information.  To participate, contact the Environmental Health (EH) Coordinator at a VAMC near you or call 1-800-827-1000 today.


Non-VA Health Care Services                 

Did you know VA may authorize veterans to receive care at a non-VA health care facility when the needed services are not available at a VAMC near the veteran, or if the veteran is unable to travel long distances to a VAMC?  Non-VA care must be authorized by VA in advance.  Veterans my also obtain services not covered in the benefits package through private health care.











A Newly Approved Benefit

Did you know honorably discharged veterans who are members of a state retirement system can now purchase service credit for up to three years of military service performed, thanks to a bill sponsored by Senator William Larkin (Cornwall-on-Hudson) and co-sponsored by Senator Simcha Felder (Brooklyn)?  The new law is one of nine recent measures pushed by the Senate to provide important benefits and recognition to veterans and their families.


Medal of Honor Recipient Benefits

Did you know the Medal of Honor recipients receive the following privileges and special benefits:

  • A Special Medal of Honor pension of $1,388.68 per month above and beyond any military pensions or other benefits for which they may be eligible
  • Special entitlements to Space “A” air transportation
  • Enlisted recipients are entitled to a supplemental uniform allowance
  • Commissary and exchange privileges (includes eligible dependents)
  • Admission to the United States military academies for qualified children of recipients – without nomination and quota requirements
  • 10 percent increase in retired pay
  • Medal of Honor Flag
  • May wear the uniform at anytime as long as the standard restrictions are observed
  • Many states offer Medal of Honor automobile license plates and other benefits
  • Interment at Arlington National Cemetery if not otherwise eligible

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Social Security Benefits

Did you know you can receive both Social Security retirement benefits and military retirement at the same time? Generally, SSA will not reduce your Social Security benefits because of your military benefits.


Veterans & Panic Attacks 

Did you know veterans diagnosed with PTSD have a higher rate of panic attacks than the general population?  Many research studies have pointed out that veterans who exhibit nightmares, and flashbacks about war trauma typically suffer from periodic panic attacks.


Restless Leg Syndrome

Did you know many veterans suffer from restless leg syndrome, but remain non-service-connected for the syndrome?  Restless leg syndrome in the urge to move the legs, usually accompanied by or in response to uncomfortable and unpleasant sensations in the legs.  Some doctors may confuse restless leg syndrome with peripheral neuropathy or radiculopathy.










Travel Pay Update

Did you know the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) changed processes for veterans to receive pay for their travels to and from appointments for medical conditions?   Starting January 1, 2021, some veterans may have a more difficult time filing for travel reimbursements.  The VA has moved everything to an online format, therefore, all veterans who want to be reimbursed for their travel expenses now have to go to a special VA website and set up an account. Each time a veteran travels to an appointment, he/she will have to log into the website to create a travel claim for each appointment they have attended before they can be reimbursed.  Click here to set up account.


Invest In Veterans Week

Did you know “Invest in Veterans Week” was founded in 2019 as a way of bringing awareness and support to businesses owned by veterans in the respective communities?


Surviving Spouse Claim

Did you know if a veteran dies while his/her VA claim is in pending status, the veteran’s surviving spouse can continue to pursue the veterans own claim for benefits?


Extended Care Services

Did you know senior veterans can receive Extended Care Services from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)?  The program is designed to delay the premature need to move a veteran to an assisted living or nursing home.  Using Home Based Primary Care is a service provided to veterans in their homes. A VA physician supervises the health care team who provides the services. Home Based Primary Care is for veterans who have complex health care needs for whom routine clinic-based care is not effective.











File On Your Smart Phone, Tablet or PC

Did you know eligible veterans and caregivers can now file reimbursement claims for travel related to your medical appointments from your PC, tablet or smart phone?  Using VA’s launch of the Beneficiary Travel Self-Service System (BTSSS), you can enjoy fast payments, more convenience, and a new ability to track in-process reimbursement claims on your PC, tablet or smart phone.


Veterans Crisis Line

Did you know the Veterans Crisis Line offers free, confidential support to veterans in crisis, as well as their family and friends 24/7/365?  Call 1-800-273-8255, chat online or text 838255 any time. 












Benefits Not Used

Did you know memorial and burial benefits are rarely used by veterans compared with other VA benefits?  Currently, only 15% of veterans who die each year are interred in a VA national cemetery (an additional 5% are interred in a VA-funded state, territorial or tribal cemetery).  The best way a veteran can take advantage of this benefit is to make his or her preferences known to their family, and then apply in advance to determine eligibility through the National Cemetery Administration’s pre-need program.


Expanded Benefits

Did you know the VA announced that veterans, and their families, caregivers, and survivors now have access to expanded burial benefits to help with end-of-life expenses related to a veteran’s gravesite, burial, funeral and transportation of remains to their final resting place?  Burial benefits are available to individuals who pay for a Veteran’s burial and funeral costs that are not reimbursed by any other organization. The updated burial benefits are:

  • Expanded reimbursement of transportation expenses, to include costs for transporting remains, to state or Tribal Veterans’ cemeteries in addition to previously eligible national cemeteries.
  • Instituted a more generous single payment rate for non-service-connected burial benefits.
  • Extended the VA plot or interment allowance to Tribal organizations.


Depending on the arrangements, funeral services can cost veteran-families thousands of dollars putting some in a tough spot financially.  For new governemnt assistance click here.