Gold star families – spouses, children, parents, siblings or others whose loved one died in service to our nation – are a vital part of the nation’s military community and history.
Gold Star & Surviving Family Members
Your service member has died, but that doesn't mean you have lost your ties to your military community. As a family member, you qualify for beneficial services that can help you cope, steer you through the legal and financial maze of probate, and support you in rebuilding your life and finding your new normal. Your military network provides immediate and long-term assistance with everything from understanding your benefits and connecting with a grief counselor to planning your financial future. You're not alone.
After the death of a loved one, you may experience a wide range of emotions. That is natural. Finding your new normal after the death of a loved one is not the same for everyone.
In its effort to ensure that military families have support in their time of need when a service member is declared deceased, whereabouts unknown or missing, the Department of Defense’s Casualty Assistance Program assigns a dedicated casualty assistance officer to advise and assist the primary next of kin.
If you’re a survivor of a service member who has died on active duty, you may have the option of taking extra time to file your tax return.
The certification process has gotten easier for students age 18 and older covered as a child annuitant under the military Survivor Benefit Plan. SBP students now have more time to file their certifications each semester and can file school certification forms online.