Nationwide Lawyers Working to Get Benefits for Military Families

Experienced attorneys navigate bureaucracy so you don’t have to

Losing a loved one is heartbreaking, especially if her/she died while serving the country. Survivors may be overwhelmed by loss and an uncertain future, and this can be worsened by a confusing and unresponsive Veterans Administration. If you have had difficulty getting the survivors benefits that you are entitled to, Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban can help.

How do I apply for survivors’ benefits?

The requirements for federal Veterans Administration survivor benefits for children or spouses can be confusing and complicated. We recommend using an experienced attorney to guide you through the steps, as our lawyers have done for hundreds of our own clients. Options for applying include:

  • Working with an accredited representative, such as an attorney or agent
  • Completing VA Form 21-534, “Application for Dependency and Indemnity Compensation, Death Pension and Accrued Benefits by a Surviving Spouse or Child” and mailing it to your regional office
  • Going to a VA regional office and have a VA employee assist you

If the death was in service, your military casualty assistance officer will assist you in completing VA Form 21-534a, “Application for Dependency and Indemnity Compensation, Death Pension and Accrued Benefits by a Surviving Spouse or Child” and mail it to the Philadelphia regional VA office.

What will I need to show in order to be approved?

You may fill out veterans compensation benefit forms from your local VA office, or you may have an appointed agent or lawyer assist you. In order to be approved, you must show one of the following:

  • The service member died while on active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty training
  • The veteran died from an injury or disease deemed to be related to military service
  • The veteran died from an injury or disease not related to his or her service, but was receiving, or was entitled to receive, VA compensation for service-connected disability that was rated as totally disabling for one of the following reasons:
    • For at least ten years immediately before death
    • Since the veteran’s release from active duty and for at least five years immediately preceding death
    • For at least one year before death if the veteran was a former prisoner of war who died after September 30, 1999

An experienced attorney can greatly aid the process. Our founding partner, Don Marcari, proudly served in the Navy JAG Corps and knows what service members and military family have to endure. Let us help you get access to the benefits your family has earned.

Contact us if you think you qualify for VA survivor’s benefits for a free initial consultation!

Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban can help you determine if you qualify for survivor’s benefits and will guide you through the process. If you are a North Carolina or Virginia resident and you think you may be eligible for VA survivor’s benefits, call us at 866-866-VETS or contact us online. You pay nothing until your case is resolved and you received compensation.