2020 Oklahoma Statutes
Title 72. Soldiers and Sailors
§72-34. Interment or cremation assistance for indigent veterans.
A. 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 reimbursement as determined by the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs, for unpaid expenses directly resulting from interment or cremation. Maximum reimbursement shall not exceed One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) per indigent veteran application.
B. Eligibility requirements for the program shall be as follows:
1. The deceased shall be a veteran as defined by Section 2 of this title;
2. No one shall have claimed the remains of the deceased Veteran;
3. The veteran shall have died in Oklahoma;
4. The veteran shall not have been in the custody of the Department of Corrections at the time of death;
5. The applicant shall provide documentation establishing the burial location of the deceased veteran's remains in a cemetery or the location where the deceased veteran's cremains have been permanently placed; and
6. The applicant shall provide documentation establishing that the deceased veteran received a proper memorial headstone or marker at the place of his or her interment as provided for in Section 2306 of Title 38 of the United States Code or that a memorial headstone or marker meeting the same physical standards for size, material, composition, placement and informational content was provided in the event the deceased veteran did not qualify under the provisions of Section 2306 of Title 38 of the United States Code.
C. The Executive Director of the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs or his or her designee shall make final approval of Indigent Veteran Burial Applications, shall determine whether the deceased meets eligibility criteria and may approve funds to reimburse the costs of interment or cremation.
D. Reimbursement shall be paid from the Indigent Veteran Burial Revolving Fund. If there are insufficient resources in the Indigent Veteran Burial Revolving Fund, payment shall be made from the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs Revolving Fund.
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.
E. Application processes for the implementation of this program shall be developed by the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs.
F. Rules for the implementation of this program shall be promulgated by the Oklahoma Veterans Commission.
Added by Laws 2016, c. 394, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2017. Amended by Laws 2019, c. 165, § 1, eff. Nov. 1, 2019.