Benefits for the Children of Veterans

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Arlington National Cemetery USA image by p_gangler from

Benefits for children of veterans vary according to individual circumstance. Health insurance programs, educational and survivor benefits, often depend on the status of the veteran. The dependent must apply for these benefits and supply proper documentation to receive compensation. Documents can include proof of the discharge of the parent from the military, disability, residence and identity.

Tuition Assistance

“According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, the child or dependant of any veteran suffering from a service connected disability likely to result in discharge or a veteran becoming deceased from such a disability has entitlement to educational assistance. (Reference 1)” This also applies in the event of death while disabled, regardless of the cause of death. Stipulations require that the disability must have occurred from active duty in one of the branches of the military. Eligibility criteria depend on the age of the applicant and educational training. Age limits range between 18 and 26 with exception to dependents actively serving the armed forces and in cases of disability. These applicants may receive an extension of benefits until the age of 31. VA limits assistance to only approved learning programs at vocational schools, colleges, universities and may cover on-the-job training. Duration of payment lasts for up to 45 months. (Reference 1) Tuition programs can consist of monthly monetary payments to the student or a tuition fee waiver in the state of residence, sometimes both.

Survivor's Benefits

The Death and Indemnity Compensation program (DIC) provides monthly payments to help care for the dependent child of the veteran. “VA also limits eligibility to the death or disablement of the veteran during training and active duty providing honorable discharge. (Reference 2)” “According to VA publications the basic payment rates for DIC consists of around $1,154 monthly. (Reference 2)” Additional fund availability varies by circumstances such as when disability of the veteran occurred and the number of children. Children over the age of 18 can still receive these benefits provided they are enrolled in school or disabled. Children meeting criteria for DIC may also receive entitlement to a death pension. Rates of payment vary and fluctuate depending on additional sources of income with this program. (Reference 2)

Health Insurance

Benefits for children of veterans include health insurance. Health insurance programs for dependents include CHAMPVA and TRICARE. CHAMPVA limitations consist of service connected disability and/or death of the veteran during active duty. TRICARE insurance plans cover civilian children of the veteran not deceased. (Reference 3) Limitations and restrictions depend on the age of the child, disability status and school enrollment status.