VA Dependents & Survivors Benefits

Survivors' benefits may be available to a spouse of a veteran, children or dependent parents.

Dependency and Indemnity Compensation - (DIC) is a monetary benefit awarded to surviving spouses, unmarried children under 18 and certain helpless children and parents of service personnel of veteran who die because of service-connected causes. In certain cases, entitlement can be established if the veteran's death is nonservice-connected. A basic DIC payment is made monthly to eligible persons with other allowances added under certain circumstances (e.g., for additional dependents or if a surviving spouse is so severely disabled as to be housebound or in need of regular aid and attendance). Income does not affect the DIC payments for surviving spouses and children. The monthly DIC rates for eligible parents depend on the amount of other income received by the parent. Survivors Benefit Plan (SBP) - DIC payments are affected by the receipt of SBP benefits.

Accrued Benefits - Accrued benefits are periodic monetary benefits (other than insurance or servicemen's indemnity) awarded by the VA to which an individual was entitled and which remained due and unpaid at the time of death. Accrued benefits are disbursed in accordance with specific guidelines.

The following supporting evidence and documents should be submitted with the application: 

Dependency Documentation - Original or a copy of birth and marriage certificates and copies of divorce/death record terminating all prior marriages for veteran and spouse. Parents, applying for DIC, should furnish original or a copy of the veteran's birth certificate. 

Military Discharge/DD Form 214 - Original or a certified copy. VA will attempt to obtain verification of military service from the service department if these documents are not available.

Certification of Death - Original or a copy of the veteran's death certificate.