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No amount of money can erase the grief and sorrow that comes with the loss of a loved one, veteran or otherwise. Their presence can never be replaced. However, if your late loved one did serve his or her country — during wartime — they may be able to pass along something via the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that can at least contribute monetarily, pay bills and other expenses that are inevitable in life.

Through the survivors pension, they can provide for their family, posthumously.

If you’re a spouse or a child of a deceased wartime veteran, and your income and net worth meet certain limits Congress set, you may be eligible.

I’m a Surviving Spouse, Am I Eligible?

If you haven’t remarried after the veteran’s death, and he or she was discharged from service under conditions other than dishonorable, then yes, you’re eligible.

The late veteran also has to have:

– Entered active duty on or before September 7, 1980 and served at least 90 days with at least one day during a wartime period OR

– Entered active duty after September 7, 1980 and served at least 24 months or the full period for which called or ordered to active duty (there are exceptions) with at least one day during wartime OR

– He or she was an officer who started on active duty after October 16, 1981 and they hadn’t previously served on active duty for at least two years

AND (this has to apply too)

– Your family income and net worth meet certain limits set by Congress (to figure this out, see this page)

I’m a Surviving Child, Am I Eligible?

If you’re unmarried and under the age of 18 OR you’re under the age of 23 and are attending a VA-approved school  OR you’re unable to care for yourself due to a disability that happened before the age of 18 — yes, you may be eligible.

How Do I Apply?

You can apply by mail (this page will show you how at the bottom) or through a trained professional (this page will show you how at the bottom) or in person, at a Regional Benefits Office (find one nearest you).

How Do I Know If I’m Going to Receive Payments or Not?

Once the application is done, you can go here to check on the status of your claim. And whether or not you’re approved to begin receiving payments.