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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR Data is current as of April 22, 2014

Title 38: Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief
PART 3—ADJUDICATION


Subpart B—Burial Benefits


Contents
§3.1600   Payment of burial expenses of deceased veterans.
§3.1601   Claims and evidence.
§3.1602   Special conditions governing payments.
§3.1603   Authority for burial of certain unclaimed bodies.
§3.1604   Payments from non-Department of Veterans Affairs sources.
§3.1605   Death while traveling under prior authorization or while hospitalized by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
§3.1606   Transportation items.
§3.1607   Cost of flags.
§3.1608   Nonallowable expenses.
§3.1609   Forfeiture.
§3.1610   Burial in national cemeteries; burial of unclaimed bodies.
§3.1611   Official Department of Veterans Affairs representation at funeral.
§3.1612   Monetary allowance in lieu of a Government-furnished headstone or marker.

Authority: 105 Stat. 386, 38 U.S.C. 501(a), 2302-2308, unless otherwise noted.

§3.1600   Payment of burial expenses of deceased veterans.

For the purpose of payment of burial expenses the term veteran includes a person who died during a period deemed to be active military, naval or air service under §3.6(b)(6). The period of active service upon which the claim is based must have been terminated by discharge or release from active service under conditions other than dishonorable.

(a) Service-connected death and burial allowance. If a veteran dies as a result of a service-connected disability or disabilities, an amount not to exceed the amount specified in 38 U.S.C. 2307 (or if entitlement is under §3.40(b), (c), or (d), an amount computed in accordance with the provisions of §3.40(b) or (c)) may be paid toward the veteran's funeral and burial expenses including the cost of transporting the body to the place of burial. Entitlement to this benefit is subject to the applicable further provisions of this section and §§3.1601 through 3.1610. Except as provided in §3.1604(d)(5), payment of the service-connected death burial allowance is in lieu of payment of any benefit authorized under paragraph (b), (c) or (f) of this section.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2307)

(b) Nonservice-connected death burial allowance. If a veteran's death is not service-connected, an amount not to exceed the amount specified in 38 U.S.C. 2302 (or if entitlement is under §3.40(b), (c), or (d), an amount computed in accordance with the provisions of §3.40(b) or (c)) may be paid toward the veteran's funeral and burial expenses including the cost of transporting the body to the place of burial. Entitlement is subject to the following conditions:

(1) At the time of death the veteran was in receipt of pension or compensation (or but for the receipt of military retirement pay would have been in receipt of compensation); or

(2) The veteran has an original or reopened claim for either benefit pending at the time of the veteran's death, and

(i) In the case of an original claim there is sufficient evidence of record on the date of the veteran's death to have supported an award of compensation or pension effective prior to the date of the veteran's death, or

(ii) In the case of a reopened claim, there is sufficient prima facie evidence of record on the date of the veteran's death to indicate that the deceased would have been entitled to compensation or pension prior to date of death. If the Department of Veterans Affairs determines that additional evidence is needed to confirm that the deceased would have been entitled prior to death, it shall be submitted within 1 year from date of request to the burial allowance claimant for submission of the confirming evidence. If the confirming evidence is not received by the Department of Veterans Affairs within 1 year from date of request, the burial allowance claim shall be disallowed; or

(3) The deceased was a veteran of any war or was discharged or released from active military, naval, or air service for a disability incurred or aggravated in line of duty, and the body of the deceased is being held by a State (or a political subdivision of a State), and the Secretary determines,

(i) That there is no next of kin or other person claiming the body of the deceased veteran, and

(ii) That there are not available sufficient resources in the veteran's estate to cover burial and funeral expenses; and

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2302(a))

(4) The applicable further provisions of this section and §§3.1601 through 3.1610.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501, 2302)

(c) Death while properly hospitalized. If a person dies from non-service-connected causes while properly hospitalized by VA, there is payable an allowance not to exceed the amount specified in 38 U.S.C. 2303(a) for the actual cost of the person's funeral and burial, and an additional amount for transportation of the body to the place of burial. For burial allowance purposes, the term hospitalized by VA means admission to a VA facility (as described in 38 U.S.C. 1701(3)) for hospital, nursing home, or domiciliary care under the authority of 38 U.S.C. 1710 or 1711(a); admission (transfer) to a non-VA facility (as described in 38 U.S.C. 1701(4)) for hospital care under the authority of 38 U.S.C. 1703; admission (transfer) to a nursing home under the authority of 38 U.S.C. 1720 for nursing home care at the expense of the United States; or admission (transfer) to a State nursing home for nursing home care with respect to which payment is authorized under the authority of 38 U.S.C. 1741. (If the hospitalized person's death is service-connected, entitlement to the burial allowance and transportation expenses fall under paragraphs (a) and (g) of this section instead of this paragraph.)

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2303(a))

(d) Determinations. Where a claim for burial allowance would be or has been disallowed because the service department holds that the disability was not incurred in line of duty and evidence is submitted which permits a different finding, the decision of the service department is not binding and the Department of Veterans Affairs will determine line of duty. The burden of proof will rest upon the claimant.

(e) Persons not included. Except as provided in §3.1605(c) burial allowance is not payable in the following cases:

(1) A discharged or rejected draftee or selectee.

(2) A member of the National Guard who reported to camp in answer to the President's call for World War I or World War II service, but who, when medically examined was not finally accepted for active military service.

(3) An alien who does not come within the purview of §3.7(b).

(4) Philippine Scouts enlisted on or after October 6, 1945, under section 14, Pub. L. 190, 79th Congress.

(5) Temporary members of the Coast Guard Reserve.

(f) Plot or interment allowance. A plot or interment allowance is payable to the person or entity who incurred the expenses in an amount not to exceed the amount specified in 38 U.S.C. 2303(b) (or if the entitlement is under §3.40 (c) or (d), an amount computed in accordance with the provisions of §3.40(c)) if the following conditions are met:

(1) For claims filed on or after December 16, 2003:

(i) The deceased veteran is eligible for burial in a national cemetery;

(ii) The veteran is not buried in a national cemetery or other cemetery under the jurisdiction of the United States;

(iii) The applicable further provisions of this section and §§3.1601 through 3.1610.

(2) For claims filed before December 16, 2003:

(i) The deceased veteran is eligible for the burial allowance under paragraph (b) or (c) of this section; or

(ii) The veteran served during a period of war and the conditions set forth in §3.1604(d)(1)(ii)-(v) (relating to burial in a state veterans' cemetery) are met; or

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2303(b)(2))

(iii) The veteran was discharged from the active military, naval, or air service for a disability incurred or aggravated in line of duty (or at time of discharge has such a disability, shown by official service records, which in medical judgment would have justified a discharge for disability; the official service department record showing that the veteran was discharged or released from service for disability incurred in line of duty will be accepted for determining entitlement to the plot or interment allowance notwithstanding that the Department of Veterans Affairs has determined, in connection with a claim for monetary benefits, that the disability was not incurred in line of duty); and

(iv) The veteran is not buried in a national cemetery or other cemetery under the jurisdiction of the United States; and

(v) The applicable further provisions of this section and §§3.1601 through 3.1610.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2303(b))

(g) Transportation expenses for burial in national cemetery. Where a veteran dies as the result of a service-connected disability, or at the time of death was in receipt of disability compensation (or but for the receipt of military retired pay or nonservice-connected disability pension would have been entitled to disability compensation at time of death), there is payable, in addition to the burial allowance (either the amount specified in 38 U.S.C. 2302 or the amount specified in 38 U.S.C. 2307 if the cause of death was service connected), an additional amount for payment of the cost of transporting the body to the national cemetery for burial. This amount may not exceed the cost of transporting the body from the veteran's place of death to the national cemetery nearest the veteran's last place of residence in which burial space is available. The amounts payable under this paragraph are subject to the limitations set forth in §§3.1604 and 3.1606.

Cross References: Definitions; veterans See §3.1(d). Protection; burial allowance. See §3.954.

[26 FR 1620, Feb. 24, 1961, as amended at 44 FR 22721, Apr. 17, 1979; 47 FR 11012, Mar. 15, 1982; 48 FR 41162, Sept. 14, 1983; 52 FR 34909, Sept. 16, 1987; 56 FR 25045, June 3, 1991; 60 FR 18356, Apr. 11, 1995; 62 FR 35423, July 1, 1997; 71 FR 8222, Feb. 16, 2006; 71 FR 44919, Aug. 8, 2006]

§3.1601   Claims and evidence.

(a) Claims. Claims for reimbursement or direct payment of burial and funeral expenses under §3.1600(b) and plot or interment allowance under §3.1600(f) must be received by VA within 2 years after the permanent burial or cremation of the body. Where the burial allowance was not payable at the death of the veteran because of the nature of his (or her) discharge from service, but after his (or her) death the discharge has been corrected by competent authority so as to reflect a discharge under conditions other than dishonorable, claim may be filed within 2 years from date of correction of the discharge. This time limit does not apply to claims for service-connected burial allowance under §3.1600(a) or for the cost of transporting a veteran's body to the place of burial under §3.1600(c) or §3.1600(g).

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 904)

(1) Claims for burial allowance may be executed by:

(i) The funeral director, if entire bill or any balance is unpaid (if unpaid bill or the unpaid balance is less than the applicable statutory burial allowance, only the unpaid amount may be claimed by the funeral director); or

(ii) The individual whose personal funds were used to pay burial, funeral, and transportation expenses; or

(iii) The executor or administrator of the estate of the veteran or the estate of the person who paid the expenses of the veteran's burial or provided such services. If no executor or administrator has been appointed then by some person acting for such estate who will make distribution of the burial allowance to the person or persons entitled under the laws governing the distribution of interstate estates in the State of the decedent's personal domicile.

(2) Claims for the plot or interment allowance (except for claims filed by a State or an agency or political subdivision thereof, under §3.1604(d)) may be executed by:

(i) The funeral director, if he or she provided the plot or interment services, or advanced funds to pay for them, and if the entire bill for such or any balance thereof is unpaid (if the unpaid bill or the unpaid balance is less than the statutory plot or interment allowance, only the unpaid amount may be claimed by the funeral director); or

(ii) The person(s) whose personal funds were used to defray the cost of the plot or interment expenses; or

(iii) The person or entity from whom the plot was purchased or who provided interment services if the bill for such is unpaid in whole or in part. An unpaid bill for a plot will take precedence in payment of the plot or interment allowance over an unpaid bill for other interment expenses or a claim for reimbursement for such expenses. Any remaining balance of the plot or interment allowance may then be applied to interment expenses; or

(iv) The executor or administrator of the estate of the veteran or the estate of the person who bore the expense of the plot or interment expenses. If no executor or administrator has been appointed, claim for the plot or interment allowance may be filed as provided in paragraph (a)(1)(iii) of this section for the burial allowance.

(3) For the purposes of the plot and interment allowance plot or burial plot means the final disposal site of the remains, whether it is a grave, mausoleum vault, columbarium niche, or other similar place. Interment expenses are those costs associated with the final disposition of the remains and are not confined to the acts done within the burial grounds but may include the removal of bodies for burial or interment.

(b) Supporting evidence. Evidence required to complete a claim for the burial allowance and the plot or interment allowance, when payable, (including a reopened claim filed within the 2-year period) must be submitted within 1 year from date of the Department of Veterans Affairs request for such evidence. In addition to the proper claim form the claimant (other than a §3.1604(d) claimant) is required to submit:

(1) Statement of account. Preferably on funeral director's or cemetery owner's billhead showing name of the deceased veteran, the plot or interment costs, and the nature and cost of services rendered, and unpaid balance.

(2) Receipted bills. Must show by whom payment was made and show receipt by a person acting for the funeral director or cemetery owner.

(3) Proof of death. In accordance with §3.211.

(4) Waivers from all other distributees. Where expenses of a veteran's burial, funeral, plot, interment and transportation were paid from funds of the veteran's estate or some other deceased person's estate and the identity and right of all persons to share in that estate have been established, payment may be made to one heir upon unconditional written consent of all other heirs.

(5) Entitlement under §3.1600(b)(3). In addition to the other evidentiary requirements of this subparagraph, there must be written certification over the signature of a responsible official of the State (or political subdivision of the State) where the body was held that—

(i) There is no next of kin or other person claiming the body of the deceased veteran, and

(ii) There are not available sufficient resources in the veteran's estate to cover burial and funeral expenses.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2302(a))

[38 FR 30106, Nov. 1, 1973, as amended at 41 FR 38771, Sept. 13, 1976; 44 FR 58710, Oct. 11, 1979; 48 FR 41162, Sept. 14, 1983; 52 FR 34909, Sept. 16, 1987; 55 FR 50323, Dec. 6, 1990]

§3.1602   Special conditions governing payments.

(a) Two or more persons expended funds. If two or more persons have paid from their personal funds toward the burial, funeral, plot, interment and transportation expenses, the burial and plot or interment allowance will be divided among such persons in accordance with the proportionate share paid by each, unless waiver is executed in favor of one of such persons by the other person or persons involved. The person in whose favor payment is waived will not be allowed a sum greater than that which was paid by such person. (See §3.1601(a)(3).)

(b) Person who performed services. A person who performed burial, funeral, and transportation services or furnished the burial plot will have priority over claims of persons whose personal funds were expended.

(c) Partial payment. Where partial payment of the expenses of the burial, funeral and transportation of the body are made from funds of the veteran's estate and the balance from the personal funds of another person, the claim of the other person has priority.

(d) Escheat. No payment of burial allowance or plot or interment allowance will be made where it would escheat.

[26 FR 1621, Feb. 24, 1961, as amended at 38 FR 30107, Nov. 1, 1973; 41 FR 38771, Sept. 13, 1976]

§3.1603   Authority for burial of certain unclaimed bodies.

If the body of a deceased veteran is unclaimed, there being no relatives or friends to claim the body, and there is burial allowance entitlement which is not based on §3.1600(b)(3), the amount provided for burial and plot or interment allowance will be available for the burial upon receipt of a claim accompanied by a statement showing what efforts were made to locate relatives or friends. The question of escheat of any part of such deceased veteran's estate is not a factor in such a claim. Burial allowance may be authorized for cost of disinterment and reburial of unclaimed remains originally accorded pauper burial but not for initial expenses of a burial in a potter's field. Burial in a prison cemetery is not considered a pauper burial.

[48 FR 41162, Sept. 14, 1983]

§3.1604   Payments from non-Department of Veterans Affairs sources.

(a) Contributions or payments by public or private organizations. When contributions or payments on the burial expenses have been made by a state, any agency or political subdivision of the United States or of a State or the employer of the deceased veteran only the difference between the entire burial expenses and the amount paid thereon by any of these agencies or organizations, not to exceed the applicable statutory burial allowance, will be authorized. Contributions or payments by any other public or private organization such as a lodge, union, fraternal or beneficial organization, society, burial association or insurance company, will bar payment of the burial allowance if such allowance would revert to the funds of such organization or would discharge such organization's obligation without payment.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2302; 2307)

(1) A contract or policy which provides for payment at death of a specified amount to a designated beneficiary other than the person rendering burial and funeral services will not bar payment of the burial allowance to the beneficiary even though the organization issuing the contract or policy retains an option to make payment direct to the person rendering burial and funeral services.

(2) The provisions of this paragraph do not apply to contributions or payments on the burial and funeral expenses which are made for humanitarian reasons if the organization making the contribution or payment is under no legal obligation to do so.

(b) Payment by Federal agency. (1) Where a veteran dies while in employment covered by the United States Employees' Compensation Act, as amended, or other similar laws specifically providing for payment of the expenses of funeral, transportation, and interment out of Federal funds, burial allowance will not be authorized by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

(2) A provision in any Federal law or regulation permitting the application of funds due or accrued to the credit of the deceased toward the expenses of funeral, transportation and interment (such as Social Security benefits), as distinguished from a provision specifically prescribing a definite allowance for such purpose, will not bar payment of the burial allowance. In such cases only the difference between the total burial expense and the amount paid thereon under such provision, not to exceed the amount specified in 38 U.S.C. 2302, will be authorized.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2302(b))

(3) Burial allowance is not payable for deaths in active service, or during the duty periods set forth in §3.6, or for other deaths where the cost of burial and transportation is paid by the service department.

(c) Payment of plot or interment allowance by public or private organization except as provided for by §3.1604(d). Where any part of the plot or interment expenses has been paid or assumed by a state, any agency or political subdivision of a State, or the employer of the deceased veteran, only the difference between the total amount of such expenses and the amount paid or assumed by any of these agencies or organizations, not to exceed the statutory plot or interment allowance, will be authorized.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2303(b)(1))

(d) Payment of the plot or interment allowance to a State or political subdivision thereof—(1) Conditions warranting payment. All of the following conditions must be met:

(i) The plot or interment allowance is payable based on the deceased veteran's eligibility for burial in a national cemetery (or, in claims filed prior to December 16, 2003, the deceased veteran's service). See §38.620 of this chapter.

(ii) The deceased veteran is buried in a cemetery or a section thereof which is used solely for the interment of persons who are eligible for burial in a national cemetery or who, with respect to persons dying on or after November 1, 2000, were at the time of death members of a reserve component of the Armed Forces not otherwise eligible for such burial or were former members of such a reserve component not otherwise eligible for such burial who were discharged or released from service under conditions other than dishonorable.

(iii) The cemetery or the section thereof where the veteran is buried is owned by the State, or an agency or political subdivision of the State claiming the plot or interment allowance.

(iv) No charge is made by the State, or an agency or political subdivision of the State for the cost of the plot or interment.

(v) The veteran was buried on or after October 1, 1978.

(2) Claims. A claim for payment under this paragraph shall be executed by a State, or an agency or political subdivision of a state on a claim form prescribed by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

(3) Amount of the allowance. A State or an agency or political subdivision of a state entitled to payment under this paragraph shall be paid the maximum statutory amount as a plot or interment allowance without regard to the acutal cost of the plot or interment.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2303(b))

(4) Priority of payment. A claim filed under this paragraph shall take precedence in payment of the plot or interment allowance over any claim filed for the plot or interment allowance under §3.1601(a)(2).

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2303(b))

(5) A plot or interment allowance may be paid to a state in addition to a burial allowance under §3.1600(a) for claims filed on or after December 16, 2003.

[26 FR 1621, Feb. 24, 1961, as amended at 29 FR 9537, July 14, 1964; 38 FR 30107, Nov. 1, 1973; 44 FR 22722, Apr. 17, 1979; 44 FR 58710, Oct. 11, 1979; 52 FR 34909, Sept. 16, 1987; 66 FR 48561, Sept. 21, 2001; 71 FR 44920, Aug. 8, 2006; 74 FR 22104, May 12, 2009]

§3.1605   Death while traveling under prior authorization or while hospitalized by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

An amount may be paid not to exceed the amount payable under §3.1600 for the funeral, burial, plot, or interment expenses of a person who dies while in a hospital, domiciliary, or nursing home to which he or she was properly admitted under authority of the Department of Veterans Affairs. (See §3.1600(c)). In addition, the cost of transporting the body to the place of burial may be authorized. The amount payable under this section is subject to the limitations set forth in paragraph (b) of this section, and §§3.1604 and 3.1606.

(a) Death enroute. When a veteran while traveling under proper prior authorization and at Department of Veterans Affairs expense to or from a specified place for the purpose of:

(1) Examination; or

(2) Treatment; or

(3) Care

dies enroute, burial, funeral, plot, interment, and transportation expenses will be allowed as though death occurred while properly hospitalized by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Hospitalization in the Philippines under 38 U.S.C. 631, 632, and 633 does not meet the requirements of this section.

(b) Transportation. Except for retired persons hospitalized under section 5 of Executive Order 10122 (15 FR 2173; 3 CFR 1950 Supp.) issued pursuant to Pub. L. 351, 81st Congress, and not as Department of Veterans Affairs beneficiaries, the cost of transportation of the body to the place of burial in addition to the burial and plot or interment allowance will be provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs where death occurs:

(1) Within a State or the Canal Zone (38 U.S.C. 101 (20)) while the veteran is hospitalized by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the body is buried in a State or the Canal Zone; or

(2) While hospitalized within but burial is to be outside of a State or the Canal Zone, except that cost of transportation of the body will be authorized only from place of death to port of embarkation, or to border limits of United States where burial is in Canada or Mexico.

(c) Extended entitlement. Entitlement extends to the following persons who die while properly hospitalized by the Department of Veterans Affairs:

(1) Discharged or rejected draftees; or

(2) Members of the National Guard who reported to camp in answer to the President's call for World War I, World War II, or Korean service, but who when medically examined were not finally accepted for active military service; or

(3) A veteran discharged under conditions other than dishonorable from a period of service other than a war period.

(d) Persons properly hospitalized. A person properly hospitalized who dies:

(1) While on authorized absence which has not exceeded 96 hours at time of death;

(2) While in a status of unauthorized absence for a period not in excess of 24 hours; or

(3) While absent from the hospital for a period totaling 24 hours of combined authorized and unauthorized absence (all other cases in which such absence arises at the expiration of an authorized absence are not included);

is considered as having died while hospitalized.

(e) Persons not properly hospitalized. Where a deceased person was not properly hospitalized, benefits will not be authorized under this section.

[26 FR 1621, Feb. 24, 1961, as amended at 26 FR 7738, Aug. 18, 1961; 31 FR 5757, Apr. 14, 1966; 32 FR 3743, Mar. 4, 1967; 36 FR 22144, Nov. 20, 1971; 38 FR 30107, Nov. 1, 1973; 44 FR 22722, Apr. 17, 1979; 48 FR 41162, Sept. 14, 1983]

§3.1606   Transportation items.

The transportation costs of those persons who come within the provisions of §§3.1600(g) and 3.1605 (a), (b), (c), and (d) may include the following:

(a) Shipment by common carrier. (1) Charge for pickup of remains from place hospitalized or place of death but not to exceed the usual and customary charge made the general public for the same service.

(2) Procuring permit for shipment.

(3) Shipping case. When a box purchased for interment purposes is also used as the shipping case, the amount payable may not exceed the usual and customary charge for a shipping case. In any such instance any excess amount would be an acceptable item to be included in the burial allowance expenses.

(4) Cost of sealing outside case (tin or galvanized iron), if a vault (steel or concrete) is used as a shipping case and also for burial, an allowance of $30 may be made thereon in lieu of a separate shipping case.

(5) Cost of hearse to point where remains are to be placed on common carrier for shipment.

(6) Cost of transportation by common carrier including amounts paid as Federal taxes.

(7) Cost of one removal by hearse direct from common carrier plus one later removal by hearse to place of burial.

(b) Transported by hearse. (1) Charge for pickup of remains from place hospitalized, or place of death and

(2) Charge for one later removal by hearse to place of burial. These charges will not exceed those made the general public for the same services.

(3) Payment of hearse charges for transporting the remains over long distances are limited to prevailing common carrier rates when common carrier service is available and can be easily and effectively utilized.

[26 FR 1622, Feb. 24, 1961, as amended at 36 FR 22144, Nov. 20, 1971; 38 FR 27354, Oct. 3, 1973; 41 FR 55875, Dec. 23, 1976; 42 FR 26205, May 23, 1977]

§3.1607   Cost of flags.

No reimbursement will be authorized for the cost of a burial flag privately purchased by relatives, friends, or other parties but such cost may be included in a claim for the burial allowance.

[26 FR 1622, Feb. 24, 1961]

§3.1608   Nonallowable expenses.

No reimbursement will be allowed for:

(a) Accessory items. Such as items of food and drink.

(b) Duplicate items. Any item or cost of any item or service, such as casket, clothing, etc., previously provided or paid for by any Federal agency (including the Department of Veterans Affairs).

[26 FR 1622, Feb. 24, 1961]

§3.1609   Forfeiture.

(a) Forfeiture of benefits for fraud by a veteran during his lifetime will not preclude payment of burial and plot or interment allowance if otherwise in order. No benefits will be paid to a claimant who participated in the fraud which caused the forfeiture by the veteran.

(b) Burial and plot or interment allowance is not payable based on a period of service commencing prior to the date of commission of the offense where either the veteran or claimant has forfeited the right to gratuitous benefits under §3.902 or §3.903 by reason of a treasonable act or subversive activities, unless the offense was pardoned by the President of the United States prior to the date of the veteran's death.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 5904(c)(2), 5905(a))

Cross Reference: Effect of forfeiture after veteran's death. See §3.904.

[38 FR 30107, Nov. 1, 1973, as amended at 41 FR 55875, Dec. 27, 1976]

§3.1610   Burial in national cemeteries; burial of unclaimed bodies.

The statutory burial allowance and permissible transportation charges as provided in §§3.1600 through 3.1611 are also payable under the following conditions:

(a) Where burial of a deceased veteran is in a national cemetery, provided that burial in a national cemetery is desired by the person or persons entitled to the custody of the remains for interment and permission for burial has been received from the officers having jurisdiction over burials in national cemeteries; or

(b) Where the body of a deceased veteran is unclaimed by relatives or friends (see §3.1603), the Director of the regional office in the area in which the veteran died will immediately complete arrangements for burial in a national cemetery or, at his or her option, in a cemetery or cemetery section meeting the requirements of §3.1604(d)(1)(ii)-(iv), provided that the total amount payable for burial and transportation expenses (including the plot allowance, if entitlement is established) does not exceed the total amount payable had burial been in a national cemetery.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1501(a))

[57 FR 29025, June 30, 1992; 57 FR 40944, Sept. 8, 1992]

§3.1611   Official Department of Veterans Affairs representation at funeral.

When requested by the person entitled to the custody of the body of a deceased beneficiary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, official representation at the funeral will be granted provided an employee is available for the purpose and this representation will entail no expense to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

[26 FR 1622, Feb. 24, 1961]

§3.1612   Monetary allowance in lieu of a Government-furnished headstone or marker.

(a) Purpose. This section provides for the payment of a monetary allowance in lieu of furnishing a headstone or marker at Government expense under the provisions of §1.631(a)(2) and (b) of this chapter to the person entitled to request such a headstone or marker.

(b) Eligibility for the allowance. All of the following conditions shall be met:

(1) The deceased veteran was eligible for burial in a National cemetery (See §1.620 (a), (b), (c) and (d) of this chapter); or died under circumstances precluding the recovery or identification of the veteran's remains or the veteran's remains were buried at sea.

(2) The veteran was buried on or after October 18, 1978.

(3) The headstone or marker was purchased to mark the otherwise unmarked grave of the deceased veteran or, if death occurred prior to December 18, 1989, the veteran's identifying information was added to an existing headstone or marker.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2306(d))

(4) The headstone or marker is for placement in a cemetery other than a National cemetery or the headstone or marker upon which the veteran's identifying information was added is situated in a cemetery other than a National cemetery.

(c) Person entitled to request a Government-furnished headstone or marker. For purposes of this monetary allowance, the term “person entitled to request a headstone or marker” includes, but is not limited to, the person who purchased the headstone or marker (or if death occurred prior to December 18, 1989, the person who paid for adding the veteran's identifying information to an existing headstone or marker), or the executor, administrator or person representing the deceased's estate.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2306(d))

(d) Receipted bill. A receipted bill describing the headstone or marker (or the services rendered in adding the veteran's identifying information to an existing headstone or marker) date of purchase, purchase price, the amount of payment and the name of the person who made such payment, shall accompany a claim for this monetary allowance.

(e) Payment and amount of the allowance. (1) The monetary allowance is payable as reimbursement to the person entitled to request a Government-furnished headstone or marker. If funds of the deceased's estate were used to purchase the headstone or marker or, if death occurred prior to December 18, 1989, to have the deceased's identifying information added to an existing headstone or marker, and no executor or administrator has been appointed, payment may be made to a person who will make a distribution of this monetary allowance to the person or persons entitled under the laws governing the distribution of intestate estates in the State of the decedent's personal domicile.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2306(d))

(2) The amount of the allowance payable is the lesser of the following:

(i) Actual cost of acquiring a non-Government headstone or marker or, if death occurred prior to December 18, 1989, the actual cost of adding the veteran's identifying information to an existing headstone or marker; or

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2306(d))

(ii) The average actual cost, as determined by VA, of headstones and markers furnished at Government expense for the fiscal year preceding the fiscal year in which the non-Government marker was purchased or the services for adding the veteran's identifying information on an existing headstone or marker were purchased.

(3) The average actual cost of Government-furnished headstones and markers during any fiscal year is determined by dividing the sum of VA's costs during that fiscal year for procurement, transportation, Office of Memorial Programs and miscellaneous administration, inspection and support staff by the total number of headstones and markers procured by VA during that fiscal year and rounding to the nearest whole dollar amount. The resulting average actual cost is published at the end of each fiscal year in the “Notices” section of the Federal Register.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2306(d))

(4) The following applies to joint or multiple headstones or markers:

(i) When a joint or multiple non-Government headstone or marker is purchased subsequent to the veteran's death, the amount set forth in paragraph (e)(2)(ii) of this section shall be available as reimbursement for the cost of the veteran's portion of the joint or multiple headstone or marker.

(ii) When a joint or multiple non-Government headstone or marker is existent at the time of the veteran's death, the allowance payable as reimbursement under paragraph (e)(2) of this section shall be determined based on the cost of the services for adding the veteran's identifying information.

(f) Payment of allowance prohibited. This monetary allowance shall not be paid when a Government headstone or marker has been requested or issued under the provisions of §1.631 (a)(2) and (b) of this chapter.

(g) Claims. There is no time limit for filing claims for monetary allowance in lieu of a Government-furnished headstone or marker.

(Authority: 38 U.S.C. 2306(d))

(h) The monetary allowance in lieu of a Government-furnished headstone or marker is not payable if death occurred on or after November 1, 1990.

(Authority: Pub. L. 101-508)

[44 FR 58711, Oct. 11, 1979, as amended at 47 FR 19131, May 4, 1982; 49 FR 19653, May 9, 1984; 51 FR 17629, May 14, 1986; 52 FR 34910, Sept. 16, 1987; 55 FR 50323, Dec. 6, 1990; 56 FR 25045, June 3, 1991; 56 FR 65851, Dec. 19, 1991; 61 FR 20727, May 8, 1996]



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