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Veterans’ Survivors Pension Eligibility Overview

VA offers pension benefits to the survivors of wartime Veterans who meet certain criteria. Among other requirements, yearly family income must be less than the amount set by Congress. Those eligible may receive tax-free supplemental income. VA offers the following types of pension support for Veterans’ survivors:

  • Survivors Pension – Surviving spouses and dependent children of deceased wartime Veterans are eligible for monthly pension benefits if they meet the net worth and income requirements.
  • Additional Pension Allowance – Surviving spouses and dependent children of deceased wartime Veterans may receive a larger pension if they are housebound or cannot perform activities of daily living without the aid of another person.

VA Requirements

  • Proof of income and net worth information (e.g., bank statements, paystubs)
  • Private medical treatment records and where to find any relevant treatment records that might be held by a federal facility, such as a VA medical center
  • Supplemental information for special circumstances related to pension for survivors and children of Veterans
  • Completed pension program application:
    • Survivors Pension – VA Form 21-534EZ
    • Examination for Housebound Status or Permanent Need for Regular Aid and Attendance (both forms are needed if applying for an additional pension allowance) – VA Form 21-2680

VA Application Process

The fastest way to obtain a pension benefit decision is to file a Fully Developed Claim (FDC). Here are some typical steps in the process:

  • Select the type of pension claim and gather the evidence it requires, including VA Form 21-534.
  • Collect military medical and other records.
  • Gather any private medical records (if required by the application).
  • Certify that there is no more evidence.
  • Submit your application.

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