Survivors Dependents Educational Assistance (DEA)
To be eligible. you must be the son, daughter, or spouse of:
- A veteran who died or is permanently and totally disabled as the result of a service-connected disability. The disability must arise out of active service in the Armed Forces.
- A veteran who died from any cause while such service-connected disability was in existence.
- A servicemember missing in action or captured in line of duty by a hostile force.
- A servicemember forcibly detained or interned in line of duty by a foreign government or power.
- VA determines has a service-connected permanent and total disability; and
- at the time of VA’s determination is a member of the Armed Forces who is hospitalized or receiving outpatient medical care, services, or treatment; and
- is likely to be discharged or released from service for this service-connected disability.
If you are a son or daughter and wish to receive benefits for attending school or job training, you must be between the ages of 18 and 26. In certain instances, it is possible to begin before age 18 and to continue after age 26. Marriage is not a bar to this benefit. If you are in the Armed Forces, you may not receive this benefit while on active duty. To pursue training after military service, your discharge must not be under dishonorable conditions. VA can extend your period of eligibility by the number of months and days equal to the time spent on active duty. This extension cannot go beyond your 31 st birthday.
If you are a spouse, benefits end 10 years from the date VA finds you eligible or from the date of death of the veteran. However, if you are a surviving spouse of a servicemember who died on active duty, your benefits end 20 years from the date of death.
You should make sure that your selected program is approved for VA training. If you are not clear on this point, VA will inform you and the school or company about the requirements.