Program Description

Parents' Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) is a needs-based benefit paid to parents (biological, adoptive, or foster) who were financially dependent on a military Servicemember or Veteran who died from a service-related cause. The foster parent relationship must have been in place for at least one year before the Veteran last entered active duty and prior to the Veteran's 21st birthday. The one-year period may end after the Veteran’s 21st birthday, as long as it begins before the Veteran’s 21st birthday, and lasts at least one continuous year.

General Program Requirements

To qualify, the claimant(s) must be the parent(s) of a military Servicemember or Veteran who died from one of the following causes:

  • A disease or injury incurred or aggravated while on active duty or active duty for training, OR
  • An injury incurred or aggravated in the line of duty, or certain diseases incurred while on inactive duty for training, OR
  • A service-connected disability.

Income limits apply.

In addition, unreimbursed medical expenses that have been paid by the parent may help to reduce his or her countable income.

For more specific information, refer to the Parents' DIC factsheet.

Your Next Steps

The following information will lead you to the next steps to apply for this program.

Application Process

To complete an application, use VA Form 21P-535, Application for Dependency and Indemnity Compensation by Parent(s) (Including Accrued Benefits and Death Compensation when Applicable), and mail or fax it to the VA Pension Management Center (PMC) that serves your state. Check the PMC Locator to find the PMC having jurisdiction over the claim.

Program Contact Information

If you have questions:

To apply for additional benefits and view your benefit status, open an eBenefits Premium account. eBenefits is a one-stop source for information on Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs benefits and services. With a free Premium level eBenefits account, Veterans, Servicemembers and their family members can conduct self-service transactions such as checking compensation and pension claim status information, enrolling in GI Bill, and obtaining copies of civil service preference letters, military records (DD214), and other personal information. For further information and to register for a free Premium level account, visit the eBenefits website.

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