Upon the death of the Veteran or his or her spouse or dependent, also called the time of need, family members should gather the DD-214 or other discharge papers and click ‘get started’ to schedule a burial. Then make arrangements with a funeral home or directly with a VA national cemetery.
VA takes special care to pay lasting tribute to the memory of Veterans who served and sacrificed and that of their families. VA meticulously maintains 131 VA national cemeteries in 39 states and is adding new sites to accommodate Veterans and loved ones in their time of need. In a few years, 95 percent of Veterans will have a burial option located within about an hour’s drive of their home.
Veterans with a qualifying discharge are automatically entitled to VA burial services. Spouses and dependent children are eligible, too.
The following burial services may be provided to Veterans and their loved ones:
Eligible Veterans may receive headstones, markers, or medallions to place in private cemeteries worldwide. Some Veterans may also be eligible for VA burial allowances or use benefits for private cemetery burials that also include a headstone or marker, a burial flag, and a Presidential Memorial Certificate.
Please note that VA gravesites cannot be reserved in advance.
It takes about 10 minutes to establish eligibility for burial in a VA national cemetery.