The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is taking another step to ensure that all Survivor benefits for VA and their survivors receive the benefits they have earned, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
The VA is now providing survivor benefits to eligible LGBTQ+ Veterans and their survivors, regardless of whether the Veteran’s death was service-related. This is possible because the VA has updated its definition of “surviving spouse” to include same-sex spouses and surviving domestic partners.
This change will provide much-needed financial security to LGBTQ+ Veterans and their families, who have long been excluded from these vital benefits. It will also help to ensure that all Veterans and their survivors receive the support they need and deserve.
This is a significant step forward for LGBTQ+ Veterans and their families, and it will help to ensure that all Veterans and their survivors are treated with the respect and dignity they have earned.
The VA has a long history of providing support to Veterans and their families, and this latest change is just one more way that the department is working to ensure that all Veterans and their survivors receive the benefits and support they have earned.
Survivor benefits for VA, LGBTQ+ Veterans, and survivors
A recent study shows an estimated 1.3 million LGBTQ+ veterans and survivors in the United States. That means that nearly one in every ten veterans or survivors identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer.
While the exact number of LGBTQ+ veterans and survivors receiving benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is unknown, the VA estimates that approximately 8,000 of them are currently receiving disability compensation and/or pension benefits. In addition, an estimated 27,000 LGBTQ+ veterans and survivors receive healthcare benefits through the VA.
The VA provides a wide range of benefits and services to veterans and their families, including healthcare, disability compensation, education, training, and more. LGBTQ+ veterans and survivors are eligible for all of these benefits and services, just like any other veteran.
However, some specific benefits and programs are of particular interest to LGBTQ+ veterans and survivors. For example, the VA offers a free and confidential counseling program for veterans who are struggling with issues related to their sexual orientation or gender identity. This program is open to all veterans, regardless of whether they served during wartime or peacetime.
In addition, the VA has a special program to help veterans who are transitioning from one gender to another. This program provides counseling, hormone therapy, and other medical care to veterans who are in the process of transitioning. The VA also offers a free and confidential support line for LGBTQ+ veterans and their families.
Finally, the VA offers survivor benefits to the spouses and dependent children of veterans who die as a result of their service-connected injuries or hospitals. These can help cover the costs of funeral and burial expenses benefits, as well as provide financial assistance to the surviving family members.
LGBTQ+ veterans and survivors have made great strides in recent years, but there is still more work to be done. The VA is committed to providing the best possible care and benefits to all of our nation’s veterans and their families, including those who identify as LGBTQ+. We hope that by increasing awareness of the benefits and programs available to LGBTQ+ veterans and survivors, we can help make their lives a little bit easier.
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