How Do I Go About Finding If My Deceased Father Had Any Benefits I'm Entitled To?

Q: My father served with the U.S. Army back in the 1970's and passed away in 2005. He received the military burial, but I'm trying to figure out how I go about finding out if he had benefits that I am entitled to now that he is deceased and what I have to do to receive them. I am 31 years old, is there an age limit? – Craig
A: Craig, I’m sorry for your loss. You can take comfort in knowing your father served his country well.
Once a non service-connected disabled veteran passes away, about the only benefits available from the VA to a child over the age of 21 is a burial flag and Presidential Memorial Certificate. You may have already gotten one or both as many funeral directors will get them for you. If you have not received a burial flag yet, you can request it from any VA regional office or U.S. Post Office by completing VA Form 21-2008, Application for United States Flag for Burial Purposes.
Next of kin, relatives and other loved ones may apply for a Presidential Memorial Certificate by mailing, e-mailing, or faxing a completed and signed VA Form 40-0247 along with a copy of the Veteran’s military discharge documents or proof of honorable military service to the VA office . The form is found at If your father was drawing a pension or disability compensation, then you may also qualify for the burial allowance of $300. You have up to two years from the time of burial to submit a claim to the VA.
You did not mention if your father had a service-connected disability and left behind a surviving spouse or not, however if he did, that can open up opportunities for more benefits, such as:
• Dependency and Indemnity Compensation
Survivor and Dependents Education Assistance
VA Home Loan Guaranty
The real key to deceased veterans benefits is if under-aged children were left behind, if there is a surviving spouse and if the veteran was rated service-connected disabled.

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How Do I Go About Finding If My Deceased Father Had Any Benefits

My Dad was in the Army back in the 60's for 3 or 5 years. He was fine when he enlisted but when he got out they said he had diabetes. My dad never drew a check or benifits. He passed away in 1990 at 48 and had a military funeral with the flag. While he was in the Va one of the guys that came around asked him how much he got a month in disability and my dad said
"nothing". The guy looked at my dad and said he shoudl have been drawing something every month since he got out of the army. He was goign to look into it but all of the sudden my dads papers dissapeared. Then he passed. Everytime I request his medical and discharge papers I get nothing that tells me anything. Was he in fact entitled to any benifits? Where we as his surviving children of 14 and 12 at the time entitled to antyhing other then social security? Please help me I am at a loss here. Thank you Kcristian

My Dad's Benefits Question

My Dad served for many years from 1939 - 1969. He passed away in 1972. He was survived by my Mom and four children. According to my Mom, he took a one time pay out at his retirement and she has not recieved any compensation since. Is this possible? He was a LTC and has a total of 2776 "Total Points Creditable" and "Qualifying for Retirement 27 years, 5 months and 5 days, according to the "Cronological Record of Military Service" document. I find this a little difficult to believe that my mother does not and has not recieved a penny from the US Government after all those years of service. Can anyone point me in a direction where I may further research?

Thank you,


I'm 18 and am applying to college, my father is deceased but was in the army and i was wondering if i can get any school grants.