Burial benefits available include a gravesite in any of the VA national cemeteries with available space, opening and closing of the grave, perpetual care, a government headstone, marker, or medallion, a burial flag, and a Presidential Memorial Certificate, at no cost to the family. Some Veterans may also be eligible for burial allowances. Cremated remains are buried or inurned in national cemeteries in the same manner and with the same honors as casketed remains.
Burial benefits available for spouses and dependents buried in a national cemetery include burial with the Veteran, perpetual care, and the spouse or dependents name and date of birth and death will be inscribed on the Veteran's headstone, at no cost to the family. Eligible spouses and dependents may be buried, even if they predecease the Veteran.
The Veterans family should make funeral or cremation arrangements with a funeral provider or cremation office. Any item or service obtained from a funeral home or cremation office will be at the family's expense. The VA created Planning Your Legacy: VA Survivors and Burial Benefits Kit, to assist Veterans and their family members in pre-need planning and record storage.
Overview of VA Memorial Benefits and How to Apply
Schedule a Burial
To schedule a burial in a VA national cemetery, please contact the National Cemetery Scheduling Office.
The National Cemetery Scheduling Office has the primary responsibility for verifying eligibility for burial in VA national cemeteries.
Headstones, Markers, and Medallions
Most Veterans with a discharge other than dishonorable are eligible to receive headstones, markers, and medallions, at no cost to the applicant.
A United States flag is provided, at no cost, to drape the casket or accompany the urn of a deceased Veteran who served honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces.
VA burial allowances are flat rate monetary benefits that are paid for an eligible Veteran's burial and funeral costs.
The Veterans Benefits Administration offers a variety of benefits and services to spouses, children, and parents of Servicemembers and Veterans.
What to Expect
Learn more about what to expect when attending a burial service at a VA national cemetery.
Pre-Need Burial Eligibility
The pre-need program determines eligibility for burial in a VA national cemetery in advance of need.
Burial at a Private Cemetery
Many burial benefits are available for eligible Veterans buried in a private cemetery at no cost to the family.