As the surviving spouse of a wartime veteran, your mother probably lost eligibility for the VA pension based your father’s record by remarrying. However, she could be eligible for VA pension if her second husband was a wartime veteran.
As a general matter, a surviving spouse can be eligible for the VA pension as follows:
- At any age (whereas a veteran applying must be at least age 65 or 100% disabled;
- Was married to the veteran for at least one year or had a child with the veteran if married less than a year;
- Lived with the veteran and during the marriage and at death (was not divorced); and
- Never remarried (with one slight exception).
The never remarried requirement has one rare exception: if a second marriage occurred January 1, 1971 or later, and the divorce began by November 1, 1990 or later and the surviving spouse is now single. Title 38, Chapter 1, Part 3, Sec. 3.55.
You should speak directly with a VA accredited attorney or your North Carolina State Veterans office VSO about other programs that your mother could qualify for, either now or in the future. They will need information about your father’s military service and death. If your father had a service connected disability, it is possible that other benefits could be available through the Dependency and Indemnity Compensation program (DIC) for surviving spouses even if remarried when the second marriage ends in divorce.