Surviving Military Spouses and Using the VA Home Loan Benefit

What is a surviving military spouse and are they eligible to purchase with a VA home loan? To get a surviving military spouse
classification from the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA), the spouse must be the survivor of a military service member that
died while on active duty or as a direct result of military service. This also covers Missing in Action (MIA) or Prisoner of War
(POW).

If you believe that you meet the criteria for this classification, and you would like to purchase with a VA mortgage, then you
will need to apply for a VA Certificate of Eligibility (COE). This can only be done by mail. Here is a list of documents that you
will need:

- A copy of the Veteran's DD Form 214.
- A copy of your marriage certificate.
- If the Veteran had died on active duty, then a copy of the DD Form 1300 R.O.C. (Report of Casualty).
- A copy of the Veteran's Death Certificate.
- Also, the service member's SSN will need to be on all documents.


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If you are planning to use these benefits to purchase a home, then you will need to allow ample time - at least two to three
months - for the VA to review and determine if the death was service-connected. Because the VA home loan allows 100%
financing, it is a great program for veterans and their families to use.

Currently, there is a bill that is attached to H.R. 2433, the Veterans Opportunity to Work Act, which was introduced by
Congresswoman Virginia Foxx, that if passed would allow the surviving spouses of veterans with disabilities, whose deaths
were not directly related to their service-connected disabilities, continued access to VA home loans. As the current law stands,
the surviving spouses of veterans who passed away due to non-service-related causes, but did suffer from service-related
permanent disabilities can still receive monthly VA compensation checks under the surviving spouse benefits, but they are
exempt from using the veterans' VA home loan portion of the benefits. This bill should fix this flaw with the VA benefits. It
does have bipartisan support

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