National Cemeteries

To provide burial space, headstones and markers, and perpetual care for veterans and members of the Armed Forces of the United States whose service terminated other than dishonorably, and for Reservists and National Guard members having 20 years qualifying service for the purpose of receiving retired pay and certain eligible dependents.

Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency
Agency: Department of Veterans Affairs
Office: National Cemetery System
Types of Assistance
Uses and Use Restrictions
Interment or memorialization in a national cemetery is for eligible veterans; members of the Armed Forces of the United States; Reservists and National Guard members with 20 years of qualifying service, who are entitled to retired pay or would be entitled, if at least 60 years of age, under Chapter 67, Title 10, United States Code; and other persons and dependents meeting eligibility requirements under law.
National Cemeteries Act of 1973, Public Law 093-43, 38 U.S.C 2402-2404, 2306.
Eligibility Requirements
Applicant Eligibility
Applicant may be the next of kin, a friend of the decedent or a public assistance officer.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Eligible Veterans, members of the Armed Forces of the United States (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard) who die on active duty; members of the Reserve or the Army and Air National Guard who die while performing active duty for training; Reservists and National Guard members having 20 years of qualifying service for the purpose of receiving retired pay or are eligible for retired pay but are under 60 years of age; the spouse of an eligible veteran member of the Armed forces or individual receiving retired pay (including a 20-year Reservist or National Guard member); the spouse of a member of the Armed Forces of the United States lost or buried at sea or officially determined to be permanently absent in a status of missing or missing in action; minor children and certain unmarried adult children of an eligible veteran or member of the Armed forces, or individual receiving retired pay (including a 20-year Reservist and National Guard member) are eligible for interment. Enlisted personnel who entered military duty after September 7, 1980, and officers commissioned after October 16, 1981, must have served a minimum of 24 months or the full period for which called or ordered to active duty to be eligible for interment. Citizens of the United States who served in the Armed Forces of any government allied with the United States during any war, who were citizens of the U.S. at time of entry and are citizens of the U.S. at time of death; Certain Commissioned Officers of the Public Health Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are also eligible. Groups determined to have active duty service are eligible for all VA benefits under the provisions of Section 401, Public Law 95-202. Reservists who are activated under Presidential Order under title 10, may also be eligible. National Guard Members called to Federal active duty may also be eligible. Other persons who meet eligibility requirements under law may be eligible for burial.
Present documentation of qualifying military service to Cemetery staff at the time the request for interment is made. National Cemetery Administration personnel will assist in verifying entitlement if documentation is not available. In addition, for a memorial headstone or marker, an affidavit attesting to the disposition of the remains is required. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-87.
Application and Award Process
Preapplication Coordination
Preapplication coordination is required. Environmental impact information is not required for this program. This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.
Application Procedure
This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-102. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-110. The person in charge of funeral arrangements (next of kin or funeral director) should communicate with the staff of the national cemetery in which interment or memorialization is desired, and furnish the name and official documentation of military service of the veteran on whose service the burial is predicated. If documentation is not available, as much of the following data as is available should be provided: Branch of service; rank; service number; social security number; VA claim number; date and place of entry into and separation from last period of active service; date and place of birth; and, date of death. Application for a memorial headstone or marker must be submitted on VA Form 40-1330, "Application for Standard Government Headstone or Marker for Installation in a Private or State Veterans' Cemetery", unless placement is in a national cemetery. Memorial headstones or markers for national cemetery placement are ordered by cemetery staff.
Award Procedure
Scheduling of a time and date for a committal service in a national cemetery will be made by the Cemetery staff upon verification of eligibility.
Not Applicable.
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time
Not Applicable.
Not Applicable.
Not Applicable.
Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
This program has no statutory formula.
Matching requirements are not applicable to this program.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Not applicable. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: lump sum.
Post Assistance Requirements
No reports are required.
No audits are required for this program.
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2013: No Current Data Available Fiscal Year 2014: No Current Data Available Fiscal Year 2015: No Current Data Available
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Salaries) FY 08 $189,219,000; FY 09 est $263,909,000; and FY 10 est $245,981,000
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Not applicable.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
The following brochures are available at the Washington Office and other VA offices at no charge: "Interments in Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) National Cemeteries" (VA-NCA IS -1) and "National Cemetery Administration" brochure. Gravesite locator maps, and informational leaflets are available for many of the national cemeteries, as well as information kiosks at certain national cemeteries.
Information Contacts
Regional or Local Office
See Regional Agency Offices. Memorial Service Network Offices are located at: 5000 Wissahickon Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19144; 1700 Clairmont Road, 4th Floor, Decatur, GA 30033-4032; P.O. Box 25126, Denver, CO 80225; 575 North Pennsylvania St., Indianapolis, IN 46204; 1301 Clay St., 1230 North, Oakland, CA 94612-5209. See Appendix IV of the Catalog for contacts and telephone numbers of Memorial Service Network Offices in the National Cemetery Administration under Department of Veterans Affairs.
Headquarters Office
Patrick Hallinan 810 Vermont Ave., N.W., Washington, District of Columbia 20420 Phone: 202-461-6248
Website Address
Examples of Funded Projects
Not Applicable.
Criteria for Selecting Proposals
Not Applicable.
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