Compensations and Benefits for Veteran’s Surviving Family Members

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Losing a loved one is hard for many reasons and leaves a mark on every family member. With the beloved's passing away, we face the reality of having to adjust to a life without them. Dealing with grief is challenging, and seeing beyond the sorrow is difficult, but existential problems always await us.

Everyone going through these life-changing experiences needs to find comfort and empowerment in knowing there are possibilities to ease at least some of the worries of life without the one we just lost. Filing for claims accessible for the family members of veterans could give a greater sense of peace in troubled times.

As a veteran's surviving spouse or child, there's a possibility to qualify for certain benefits, like help with burial costs, compensation, or pension. The surviving family members may also be eligible for health care, life insurance, or financial assistance with school or training. According to Veterans Affairs, an informed claimant is much more likely to receive their rightfully earned benefits. Learning as much as possible about the compensation is advisable before applying for it.

Every compensation and benefit has a set of regulations for awarding help to the claiming families, and there's a time limit for filing the claims. The surviving spouse or children have the right to apply for compensation after the veteran's death. As with all procedures, starting the process right away is essential to avoid missing out.

Indemnification and Assistance for the Surviving Family Members

  • Veteran Burial Benefits - the allowance helps cover eligible veterans' burials, funerals and expenses with gravesites and headstones. With the changed VA regulation, the program is simplified, and the eligible surviving spouses are paid automatically upon notification of the veteran's death. It is the benefit for which the surviving spouse does not have to file a claim. The conditions for eligibility include:
    • the veteran was honorably discharged from service
    • the veteran's cause of death is a service-connected disability
    • the veteran must have had a VA pension or compensation at the time of death
  • The Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) - family members of veterans who passed away may be eligible for this monthly benefit. Asbestos-related diseases like asbestosis, mesothelioma, or lung cancer are service-related if the veteran was exposed during duty. Spouses and children of the veterans could be entitled to this financial help if they are survivors of:
    • a veteran who died of a service-related injury or disease
    • a veteran whose death wasn't related to their service but who was rated disabled by the VA
  • The VA Survivor's Pension, also known as Death Pension - is a benefit paid to eligible dependents of deceased wartime veterans. Spouses and children of the veterans may be entitled if:
    • the deceased veteran was discharged from service under other than dishonorable conditions
    • the late veteran served 24 months or more of active duty with at least one day during wartime
    • the claimants are the un-remarried surviving spouse or unmarried child of the deceased veteran
  • Accrued Benefits - any eligible family member's claim for survivor pension is also a claim for any available accrued benefits. Accrued benefits would include any pending and unresolved claim at the time of the veteran's death. They encompass any recurring help due but not paid when the veteran died. If the surviving spouse and the veteran's children apply simultaneously, there's an order of precedence for this benefit with the spouse as the first recipient.
  • VA Health Care Through CHAMPVA - surviving family members may be eligible for extensive health care through the Department of Veterans Affairs health benefits program. This program helps cover medical services and supplies for surviving spouses and dependent children who don't qualify for coverage under TRICARE. The criteria for the family member's eligibility is that the deceased veteran either:
    • died from a service-connected disability rated by the VA
    • was rated permanently disabled from a service-connected disability at the time of death

Offering Support for Claiming the Rightful Compensations

Often veterans who served between the 1930s and the 1980s developed fatal diseases due to exposure to asbestos and toxic chemicals during their service. The medical care and treatments burden the family budget of the veterans with high costs, draining the resources financially and emotionally. Filling out government forms can be daunting in most cases, much less in the painful event of a loved one passing away. Because filing a claim is a complex process, it is essential to have the proper legal aid. We can put the family members of the deceased veterans in touch with specialized attorneys who have the skill and experience to assist them with getting lawful compensation.

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