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Dependency and Indemnity Claims

DIC – Dependency and Indemnity Compensation

It is difficult to plan for the death of a loved one, especially one whom may be a hero in your family. When a veteran passes away, Bergmann & Moore understands the pain and suffering for the loss. In a time of sorrow, it is important for surviving family members to know they may be entitled to benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) based on the veteran’s disabilities.  The name of the benefit is Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), and it is usually paid to the veteran’s surviving spouse.

According to VA, DIC is a tax free monetary benefit paid to eligible survivors of veterans who died in the line of duty or eligible survivors of Veterans whose death resulted from a service-related condition. According to VA, the surviving family members of a deceased veteran also include children and parents. Learn more details about DIC at VA’s web site.

 

Qualifying for DIC

As of December 2016, VA’s basic monthly rate for DIC payments was $1,257.95. The amount is tax free and paid to the surviving family member for the rest of his or her life.

Qualifying for DIC benefits can accomplished several ways:

  • When a service member has died in the line of duty.
  • When a veteran who was already service-connected by VA has died from a service-connected condition, either as the main or contributing cause of the veteran’s death.
  • When a veteran who was not service-connected by VA has died, then the surviving spouse must prove that a service-related condition was the main or contributing cause of the veteran’s death.
  • When a veteran who was already service-connected who dies from a non service-connected condition that was totally disabling prior to death. This example usually applies to former prisoners of war and veterans who were totally disabled prior to death..

Retroactive Payments

Under VA rules, there is no time limit for filing a DIC claim. However, filing a claim soon after the veteran’s death may preserve retroactive benefits.  For example, if a surviving family member files a DIC claim within one year of the veteran’s death, then the surviving family member is entitled to receive benefits retroactive to the date of the veteran’s death.  That’s why it is important to file a DIC claim as soon as possible in order to preserve retroactive benefits.  One year of retroactive benefits is more than $15,000.

 

Bergmann & Moore in Action

Understanding VA’s complex rules for DIC and then submitting all of the paperwork can be a challenge for surviving family members, especially when it comes to finding medical evidence of for a veteran who has died.

Please read about how Bergmann & Moore was successful in winning a DIC case for a widow where a Veteran died due to a condition that is not on VA’s list of presumptive conditions associated with Agent Orange.

 

Free DIC Claim Consultation

Bergmann & Moore remains dedicated to helping surviving spouses and family members obtain DIC benefits from VA. If you are the family member of a veteran who died and you filed a DIC claim that was denied by VA, Bergmann & Moore may be able to assist you with this type of complex claim.  Please contact Bergmann & Moore for a FREE consultation

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