Death Gratuity Lawyers

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What is a Death Gratuity?

Death gratuities are special payments made to certain family members if a soldier of the U.S. Armed Forces dies.  They are governed by a federal statute: 10 USC §§ 1475-1491.

When Are Death Gratuities Awarded?

A death gratuity is awarded by the U.S. government once they have immediate notice that the death has occurred of one of the following:

When are Death Gratuities Not Awarded?

Death gratuities will not be awarded if:

Who is Eligible to Receive a Death Gratuity?

The government will pay a certain amount if the deceased falls into one of the categories above.  The recipient of the money will be determined by who is first on the list below:

  1. A surviving spouse,
  2. Any children,
  3. If stated by the deceased, one or more of the following: parents, brothers, or sisters,
  4. Parents in equal shares, and
  5. Brothers and sisters in equal shares.

How Much Can a Relative Receive?

The standard death gratuity amount is usually $100,000.  This is subject to various exceptions however.

Do I Need an Attorney if I Think I Should Receive a Death Gratuity?

It is highly recommended that you find an attorney if you believe you should receive a death gratuity.  A lawyer will be able to help protect your rights as an eligible survivor and deal with the relevant agencies involved.

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Last Modified: 01-03-2011 02:51 PM PST

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