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Unremarried Surviving Spouse


The term “Unremarried Surviving Spouse” refers to a widow or widower of a deceased veteran who has not remarried. This individual is eligible to receive certain VA benefits as a surviving beneficiary. The VA provides financial support, educational assistance, and other resources to these spouses, ensuring their well-being as part of the veteran’s legacy.

Key Takeaways

  1. Unremarried Surviving Spouse refers to a spouse of a deceased veteran who has not remarried after the veteran’s death, and is eligible for certain VA benefits.
  2. Benefits available to Unremarried Surviving Spouses include Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), Survivors Pension, education assistance, home loan guaranty, and burial benefits, among others.
  3. To qualify for these benefits, the Unremarried Surviving Spouse must meet the specific criteria defined by the VA, such as length of marriage, the cause of the veteran’s death, and the veteran’s discharge status from the military.


The term “Unremarried Surviving Spouse” holds significance in the context of VA benefits because it refers to the eligibility criteria for a deceased veteran’s spouse to access certain benefits and services provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

By ensuring that the surviving spouse has not remarried, the VA aims to protect both the deceased veteran’s legacy and honor, as well as provide vital support to the spouse who has experienced the loss of their partner who served in the military.

Access to benefits such as Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), healthcare, education, home loans, and burial assistance can greatly help the unremarried surviving spouse in maintaining their financial stability and emotional well-being, ultimately honoring their loved one’s service and sacrifice.


The Unremarried Surviving Spouse term serves a significant purpose within the context of VA benefits. By design, it aims to acknowledge and provide necessary support to the widowed spouses of deceased veterans who have not remarried.

This crucial provision ensures that these individuals continue to receive certain benefits that their veteran partners were once entitled to or those they deserved in recognition of their dedicated service to the country. This is based on the understanding that these spouses have made their own sacrifices as well, and their loss comes with unique challenges and struggles to rebuild their lives.

The concept of Unremarried Surviving Spouse takes into account the multitude of possible benefits to support these widows or widowers without requiring them to forfeit their access to these programs by entering into a new marital union. Some of the benefits available to them include Dependency and Indemnity Compensation, Survivor’s Pension, health care, education, home loan assistance, and even burial benefits.

This provision acknowledges their loss and helps ensure their well-being and financial stability. It plays a critical role in supporting the immediate family members of deceased veterans, thereby demonstrating the government’s commitment to honoring their service and devotion to the nation, even in their absence.

Examples of Unremarried Surviving Spouse

Unremarried Surviving Spouse refers to a widow or widower of a deceased veteran who has not remarried and may be eligible for certain VA benefits. Here are three real-world examples:

Kelly, a 45-year-old woman, lost her husband, a Navy veteran, in a work-related accident. Since his death, Kelly has not remarried and is raising their two children alone. As an unremarried surviving spouse, Kelly may qualify for benefits such as Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) and the Survivors’ Pension.

John, a 60-year-old man, has been a widower for ten years after his wife, an Army veteran, passed away from service-related injuries. John has not remarried and is facing financial difficulties due to a lack of stable income. As an unremarried surviving spouse, he could be eligible for the VA’s Survivors’ Pension, which provides financial support to needy surviving spouses with minimal income.

Sarah, a 38-year-old woman, lost her husband, an Air Force veteran, in a car accident a few years ago. Since his death, she has not remarried and is pursuing her college degree to provide a better future for their daughter. As an unremarried surviving spouse, Sarah may be eligible for educational benefits under the Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance program to help pay for her tuition and expenses.

FAQs for Unremarried Surviving Spouse VA Benefits

What are the eligibility requirements for an Unremarried Surviving Spouse to receive VA benefits?

To be eligible for VA benefits as an Unremarried Surviving Spouse, you must not have remarried after the Veteran’s death, and the Veteran must have died while on active duty, from a service-related disability, or had a VA-rated disability at the time of death.

What benefits are available for Unremarried Surviving Spouses?

Unremarried Surviving Spouses are entitled to various benefits, such as dependency and indemnity compensation, death pension, educational assistance, health care, home loans, and memorial benefits.

How does an Unremarried Surviving Spouse apply for VA benefits?

To apply for VA benefits as an Unremarried Surviving Spouse, you will need to complete and submit the appropriate application forms, along with documentation such as a marriage certificate, death certificate, and additional records reflecting the Veteran’s service and eligibility for benefits.

Can an Unremarried Surviving Spouse lose their eligibility for VA benefits?

Yes, if the Surviving Spouse remarries, they may lose their eligibility for certain VA benefits. However, if the remarriage ends (due to death, divorce, or annulment), the Surviving Spouse could regain eligibility for specific benefits.

Do children of deceased Veterans also receive VA benefits?

Yes, eligible children of deceased Veterans may also receive VA benefits, such as dependency and indemnity compensation, educational assistance, and health care. The eligibility criteria for children will depend on the Veteran’s service, age, and other factors.

Related VA Benefit Terms

  • Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC)
  • Survivors Pension Benefits
  • Home Loan Guaranty
  • Education and Training Benefits
  • Burial and Memorial Benefits

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