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Funerals: Financial Assistance


Financial assistance is available to help pay for a funeral.. Veterans may even be entitled to free burial.

Sources of funds for financial assistance for funerals include the following:s.

  • Veterans 
    • Veterans are entitled to a cash benefit from the Veterans Administration (VA)
      • Service-related death: VA will pay up to $2,000 toward burial expenses for deaths on or after September 11, 2001.  If the veteran is buried in a VA national cemetery, some or all of the cost of transporting the deceased may be reimbursed.
      • Nonservice-related death: VA will pay up to $300 toward burial and funeral expenses, and a $300 plot-interment allowance.
    • Veterans and qualifying spouses are entitled to free burial in any of 125 VA national cemeteries, space permitting. The cemetery plot, headstone, transportation of the remains, burial with military honors, if requested, and grave upkeep are provided by the government at no charge. The casket and other funeral home expenses remain the responsibility of the family.
    • If a veteran chooses to be buried in a private cemetery, the VA can provide a free headstone.
    • For more information on federal benefits for veterans, call the VA at 800. 827.1000 or see offsite link Registration is required. Registration is free.
    • Many states have state veterans cemeteries for residents.
  • Most states and local governments have funds available for burial expenses for financially needy individuals. Check with your local city or town clerk's office for guidance as to what programs may be available.
  • Social Security provides small amounts of assistance for qualifying individuals. Contact the local Social Security Administration office for further information. To locate a Social Security office near you, see: offsite link
  • Check the deceased's employer. Many employers offer funeral benefits.
  • Check local religious, fraternal and any other organizations to which the decedent belongs.

If No Money Is Available To Pay For A Funeral

  • Call your local Department of Social Services or Human Services for the county in which you live. There are generally provisions for paying for all or a part of funeral and burial costs, including a cemetery plot.
  • Your religious or other organization to which you belong may also pay for funerals.

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