Steps to Take When a Retired Marine Dies

REPORT the death to DFAS at 1-800-321-1080 or (216) 522-5955 (press 3) to stop retirement pay to avoid indebtedness. If the retired Marine was receiving pay from another source due to a disability from the VA or civil service retirement from the Office of Personnel Management, contact that agency to return the payment. If you fail to do this, you will have to repay it later. You may also report the death online at Additional information from DFAS is available at Note: When you notify DFAS of the Marine’s death, DFAS will forward a confirmed death listing to Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps (MMSR-6) for inclusion in an upcoming issue of the Semper Fidelis.

 REPORT Survivor Benefit Plan election. Designated annuitants will receive notification from DFAS if the deceased retired Marine elected SBP. If you are uncertain of whether an election was made, call DFAS at 1-800-321-1080.

 UPDATE your military identification card. As the survivor of a deceased Marine, your ID card must be updated to reflect the change in your status due to the Marine’s death. You may access your nearest ID site at or call HQMC (MMSR-6) at 1-800-336-4649 or (703) 784-9310 to obtain the three sites closest to you.

 NOTIFY the Social Security Administration. Call 1-800-SSA-1213 ( to apply for

the $255 death benefit, if applicable.

 CONTACT the VA for burial and other benefits. The VA does not provide burial benefits for annuitants; however, the annuitant may be eligible for burial in a military cemetery. You will need to provide a copy of the DD 214. Call the VA at 1-800-827-1000 or visit


RECEIVING CIVIL SERVICE PAY? U.S. Office of Personnel : 1-888-767-6738, (202) 606-0500




• Arlington National Cemetery: (703) 607-8000

• Gold Star Wives of America: 1-888-751-6350,

• Military Funeral Honors: 1-866-826-3628 or (703) 432-9524

• Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society: (703) 696-4904,

• National Military Families Association: 1-800-260-0218,

• Society of Military Widows: 1-800-842-3451,

• Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors: 1-800-959-8277,