Death before approval

Discussion in 'Share Your Personal Experience' started by SEH, Jul 8, 2009.

  1. SEH

    SEH Newbie

    I monitored these forums for 6 months before preparing the application package for my father in law due to him being in various facilities and also having to get his excess assets sheltered in an irrevocable living trust. The information on the forum was very valuable and it helped me to prepare an exceptional package. I delivered the package to my local VSO in Orange County, CA on 2/25/09. who forwarded it on to the San Diego regional office. I received a letter from the St. Paul office acknowledging receipt of the package on March 23rd. On May 12th I received another letter from St. Paul stating the application is still in process and apologizing for the delay. Unfortunately, he passed away on June 9th. I plan to wait until I get the approval letter just for my own knowledge about how long it would have taken. In the meantime, I contacted the VSO to see about getting reimbursed for burial expenses. I was given Form 21-530 (Application for Burial Benefits). I also read an email from Debbie Burak referring to Form 21-601 Application for Accrued Amunts Due a Deceased Beneficiary). I need to know which form is correct to use in my situation
  2. vetadmin

    vetadmin Administrator Staff Member


    First our condolences to you and your family.

    With regards to your question, you should not wait for the VA to make a decision on the veteran's claim. The VA could look at that action as a form of attempted fraud. Once you file either the 21-530 or the 21-601 form, the VA will stop the processing of the pending claim and close out the file.

    There's no useful purpose to delay in notifying the VA of the veteran's death. Previous correspondence from the VA, in fine print, instructed the applicant to keep the VA informed of all changes.

    As far as the question being asked, both forms need to be submitted because there are two separate benefits being applied for. The 21-530 form is for the allowance that the VA provide for qualified veterans for the '*burial allowance and the plot allowance*'. The 21-601 form is for what entitlement was due to vet at the time of his death.

    21-601 needs to be filed by the person whoever paid the expenses, and provide proper documentation of receipts, etc.
    For a more in-depth explanation of this, please see this question on the FAQs

    Again, our condolences to you and your family with the hope you will be able to close this final chapter and allow yourselves time to deal with your loss.

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