2017 Oklahoma Statutes
Title 72. Soldiers and Sailors
§72-34. Interment or cremation assistance for indigent veterans

Universal Citation: 72 OK Stat § 72-34 (2017)

The Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs shall establish a program to provide assistance for the proper interment or cremation of honorably discharged indigent veterans of the United States Armed Forces. The program shall aid in obtaining any available burial benefits from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs or through private organizations. The program shall provide for a burial grant for any indigent veteran or any person who qualifies for financial assistance as determined by the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs. Maximum reimbursement shall not exceed Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) per indigent veteran.

Eligibility and approval requirements for the program shall be as follows:

1. The indigent veteran has been determined to be homeless as defined as follows: a homeless veteran is an individual without permanent housing who may live on the streets, stay in a shelter, mission, abandoned building or in any other unstable or non-permanent situation, and who is eligible under 38 Code of Federal Regulation 38.620;

2. The deceased shall be a veteran as defined by 38 U.S.C. 101(2) and verified by discharge records. An Oklahoma resident who served in the National Guard or Reserve Component whose only service is active duty training or inactive duty for training but meets all other 38 Code of Federal Regulations 38.620 statutes is eligible for the Indigent Veteran Burial Revolving Fund;

3. The Veteran shall have died in Oklahoma;

4. The Veteran shall have been homeless and indigent at the time of death;

5. The Veteran's estate did not possess money or other assets to pay for or defray funeral expenses;

6. There is no other person obligated by law to pay for funeral expenses of the deceased;

7. The Executive Director of the Department of Veterans Affairs or his or her designee shall make final approval of Indigent Veteran Burial Applications;

8. The approving authority shall determine whether the deceased meets eligibility criteria and approves funds to defray burial costs. Reimbursement is limited to Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) per application;

9. Reimbursement will be paid from the Indigent Veteran Burial Revolving Fund. If there are insufficient resources in the Indigent Veteran Burial Revolving Fund, payment will be made from the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs Revolving Fund; and

10. Once funds are available in the Indigent Veteran Burial Revolving Fund the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs may be reimbursed for payments made from the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs Revolving Fund.

Rules and application processes for the implementation of this program shall be promulgated by the Executive Director of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Added by Laws 2016, c. 394, § 1, eff. Jan 1, 2017.

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