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After a veteran dies, he or she technically no longer has a claim to disability benefits. However, there are certain circumstances in which a widow, widower or surviving child may be entitled to accrued benefits, or money from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). If you're not sure whether you're eligible contact your nearest VSO.
If you're a surviving spouse or child, here are the circumstances in which you would be eligible to file for VA benefits:
1. There was a disability claim pending at the time of the veteran’s death.
2. A previously denied claim had new medical evidence in the VA claims file before the veteran died.
3. A claim of clear and unmistakable error (CUE) was pending at the time of the veteran’s death.
4. A veteran’s appeal on a denied disability claim was pending at death.
5. The claim must be filed within one year after the veteran died.