VA guidelines

VA Loan Rules for Surviving Spouses of Military Members

November 12, 2010

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VA Loan Rules for Surviving Spouses of Military Members

Military members and their spouses are eligible to apply for VA home loans, but what about situations where the veteran died on active duty or as a result of disabilities as a result of military service? Do surviving spouses get the same access to VA loans after the spouse has died?

The Department of Veterans Affairs says yes. But it requires documentation before it will issue a certificate of eligibility for a VA loan to the surviving spouse. In the same way that active duty, retired or separated military members must submit proof of service, the spouse must submit the right proof in this specific circumstance.

For surviving spouses of those who died on active duty and already receive VA compensation (Dependency and Indemnity Compensation or DIC) no additional paperwork is needed aside from filling out VA Form 26-1817 online or by calling 1-888-244-6711 to have a copy of the form mailed to you.

Those who don’t get DIC need to fill out VA Form 26-1817 and submit a copy of the Report of Casualty (DD Form 1300) and a copy of the marriage certificate. The veteran’s social security number should go on all correspondence to the VA.

Surviving spouses of veterans who died as a result of military service–those who were once in the military but retired or separated and have VA-identified conditions that contributed to the death of the veteran–should send the VA a copy of the DIC award letter along with VA Form 26-1817.

Spouses who aren’t getting DIC benefits should send a copy of the veteran’s DD Form 214 (Report of Discharge) plus copies of the veteran’s death certificate and the marriage certificate.

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