(Added Pub. L. 85–861, § 1(32)(A),Sept. 2, 1958, 72 Stat. 1452; amended Pub. L. 88–647, title III, § 301(1),Oct. 13, 1964, 78 Stat. 1071; Pub. L. 96–513, title V, § 511(59),Dec. 12, 1980, 94 Stat. 2925; Pub. L. 99–661, div. A, title VI, § 604(e)(1),Nov. 14, 1986, 100 Stat. 3877; Pub. L. 112–81, div. A, title VI, § 651(a)(1),Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1466.)
Historical and Revision Notes
| Revised section
|| Source (U.S. Code)
|| Source (Statutes at Large)
||38:1101(2) (less last sentence, as applicable to death gratuity).
|38:1101(4) (as applicable to death gratuity, less (D) (as applicable to 38:1133(a))).
|38:1101(5) (as applicable to death gratuity, less (D) (as applicable to 38:1133(a))).
|38:1101(6)(A) (less clause (3) of 2d sentence, as applicable to death gratuity).
|38:1001(6)(B) (1st sentence, less last 32 words, as applicable to death gratuity, and less (ii)) (as applicable to 38: 1133 (a))).
|38:1101(11)(E) (less last 27 words, as applicable to death gratuity).
||Aug. 1, 1956, ch. 837, §§ 102(2) (less last sentence, as applicable to death gratuity), 102(2) (last sentence, as applicable to death gratuity), (4) (as applicable to death gratuity, less (D) (as applicable to § 303(a))), (5) (as applicable to death gratuity, less (D) (as applicable to § 303(a))), (6)(A) (as applicable to death gratuity), (B) (1st sentence, less last 32 words, as applicable to death gratuity, and less (ii) (as applicable to § 303(a))), (11)(E) (less last 27 words, as applicable to death gratuity), 301(a), 70 Stat. 858–861, 868.
||38:1101(2) (last sentence, as applicable to death gratuity under 38: 1131(a)).
||38:1101(6)(A) (clause (3) of 2d sentence, as applicable to death gratuity under 38:1131 (a)).
In subsection (a), the word “receiving” is inserted for clarity. Clause (1) is substituted for 38:1101(2) (1st sentence, and clauses (A)–(C) of 2d sentence); 38:1101(4)(A), (C), and (D); and 38:1101(5)(A), (C), and (D). Clause (2) is based on the words “inactive duty training”, in 38:1131(a). Clause (3) (less words in parentheses) is substituted for 38:1101(6)(B) (1st sentence, less last 32 words). 38:1101(6)(A) (1st sentence) is omitted as covered by section
of this title. The words in parentheses in clause (3) are substituted for 38:1101(6)(A) (2d sentence, less clause (3)). Clause (4) is substituted for 38:1101(2) (clause (D) of 2d sentence) and (5)(C). Clause (5) is substituted for 38:1101(2)(E), (11)(E) (less last 27 words). The words “active duty for training”, in 38:1131(a), are omitted as covered by the definition of “active duty” in section
of this title.
References in Text
The Military Selective Service Act, referred to in subsec. (a)(5)(B), is act June 24, 1948, ch. 625, 62 Stat. 604
, as amended, which is classified principally to section
et seq. of Title 50, Appendix, War and National Defense. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see References in Text note set out under section
, Appendix, and Tables.
2011—Subsec. (a)(3). Pub. L. 112–81
inserted “or while staying at the Reserve’s residence, when so authorized by proper authority, during the period of such inactive duty training or between successive days of inactive duty training” before the semicolon at the end.
1986—Subsec. (a)(3). Pub. L. 99–661
struck out “from an injury incurred by him after December 31, 1956,” before “while traveling directly to or from”.
1980—Subsec. (a)(5)(B). Pub. L. 96–513
substituted “Military Selective Service Act (50 App.
et seq.)” for “Universal Military Training and Service Act (50 App.
1964—Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 88–647
inserted provisions covering applicants for membership in a reserve officers’ training corps while attending, or in travel to or from field training or a practice cruise.
Effective Date of 2011 Amendment
Pub. L. 112–81
, div. A, title VI, § 651(c),Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1467
, provided that: “The amendments made by this section [amending this section and sections
of this title] shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act [Dec. 31, 2011], and shall apply with respect to deaths that occur on or after that date.”
Effective Date of 1986 Amendment
Amendment by Pub. L. 99–661
applicable with respect to persons who, after Nov. 14, 1986, incur or aggravate an injury, illness, or disease or die, see section 604(g) ofPub. L. 99–661
, set out as a note under section
of this title.
Effective Date of 1980 Amendment
Amendment by Pub. L. 96–513
effective Dec. 12, 1980, see section 701(b)(3) ofPub. L. 96–513
, set out as a note under section
of this title.
Transfer of Functions
For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections
, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section
Public Health Service
Authority vested by this chapter in “military departments”, “the Secretary concerned”, or “the Secretary of Defense” to be exercised, with respect to commissioned officers of Public Health Service, by Secretary of Health and Human Services or his designee, see section
, The Public Health and Welfare.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Authority vested by this chapter in “military departments”, “the Secretary concerned”, or “the Secretary of Defense” to be exercised, with respect to commissioned officer corps of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, by Secretary of Commerce or Secretary’s designee, see section
, Navigation and Navigable Waters.
Improved Assistance for Gold Star Spouses and Other Dependents
Pub. L. 113–66
, div. A, title VI, § 633,Dec. 26, 2013, 127 Stat. 786
, provided that:
“(a) Advocates for Gold Star Spouses and Other Dependents.—Each Secretary of a military department shall designate for each Armed Force under the jurisdiction of such Secretary a member of such Armed Force or civilian employee of such military department to assist spouses and other dependents of members of such Armed Force (including reserve components thereof) who die on active duty through the provision of the following services:
“(1) Addressing complaints by spouses and other dependents of deceased members regarding casualty assistance or receipt of benefits authorized by law for such spouses and dependents.
“(2) Providing support to such spouses and dependents regarding such casualty assistance or receipt of such benefits.
“(3) Making reports to appropriate officers or officials in the Department of Defense or the military department concerned regarding resolution of such complaints, including recommendations regarding the settlement of claims with respect to such benefits, as appropriate.
“(4) Performing such other actions as the Secretary of the military department concerned considers appropriate.
“(b) Training for Casualty Assistance Personnel.—
“(1) Training program required.—The Secretary of Defense shall implement a standardized comprehensive training program on casualty assistance for the following personnel of the Department of Defense:
“(A) Casualty assistance officers.
“(B) Casualty assistance calls officers.
“(C) Casualty assistance representatives.
“(2) General elements.—The training program required by paragraph (1) shall include training designed to ensure that the personnel specified in that paragraph provide the spouse and other dependents of a deceased member of the Armed Forces with accurate information on the benefits to which they are entitled and other casualty assistance available to them when the member dies while serving on active duty in the Armed Forces.
“(3) Service-specific elements.—The Secretary of the military department concerned may, in coordination with the Secretary of Defense, provide for the inclusion in the training program required by paragraph (1) that is provided to casualty assistance personnel of such military department such elements of training that are specific or unique to the requirements or particulars of the Armed Forces under the jurisdiction of such military department as the Secretary of the military department concerned considers appropriate.
“(4) Frequency of training.—Training shall be provided under the program required by paragraph (1) not less often than annually.”
Policy and Procedures on Casualty Assistance to Survivors of Military Decedents
Pub. L. 109–163
, div. A, title V, § 562,Jan. 6, 2006, 119 Stat. 3267
, as amended by Pub. L. 109–364
, div. A, title V, § 566,Oct. 17, 2006, 120 Stat. 2223
, provided that:
“(a) Comprehensive Policy on Casualty Assistance.—
“(1) Policy required.—Not later than August 1, 2006, the Secretary of Defense shall prescribe a comprehensive policy for the Department of Defense on the provision of casualty assistance to survivors and next of kin of members of the Armed Forces who die during military service (in this section referred to as ‘military decedents’).
“(2) Consultation.—The Secretary shall develop the policy under paragraph (1) in consultation with the Secretaries of the military departments, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and the Secretary of Homeland Security with respect to the Coast Guard.
“(3) Incorporation of past experience and practice.—The policy developed under paragraph (1) shall be based on—
“(A) the experience and best practices of the military departments;
“(B) the recommendations of nongovernment organizations with demonstrated expertise in responding to the needs of survivors of military decedents; and
“(C) such other matters as the Secretary of Defense considers appropriate.
“(4) Procedures.—The policy shall include procedures to be followed by the military departments in the provision of casualty assistance to survivors and next of kin of military decedents. The procedures shall be uniform across the military departments except to the extent necessary to reflect the traditional practices or customs of a particular military department.
“(b) Elements of Policy.—The comprehensive policy developed under subsection (a) shall address the following matters:
“(1) The initial notification of primary and secondary next of kin of the deaths of military decedents and any subsequent notifications of next of kin warranted by circumstances.
“(2) The transportation and disposition of remains of military decedents, including notification of survivors of the performance of autopsies.
“(3) The qualifications, assignment, training, duties, supervision, and accountability for the performance of casualty assistance responsibilities.
“(4) The relief or transfer of casualty assistance officers, including notification to survivors and next of kin of the reassignment of such officers to other duties.
“(5) Centralized, short-term and long-term case-management procedures for casualty assistance by each military department, including rapid access by survivors of military decedents and casualty assistance officers to expert case managers and counselors.
“(6) The provision, through a computer accessible Internet website and other means and at no cost to survivors of military decedents, of personalized, integrated information on the benefits and financial assistance available to such survivors from the Federal Government.
“(7) The provision, at no cost to survivors of military decedents, of legal assistance by military attorneys on matters arising from the deaths of such decedents, including tax matters, on an expedited, prioritized basis.
“(8) The provision of financial counseling to survivors of military decedents, particularly with respect to appropriate disposition of death gratuity and insurance proceeds received by surviving spouses, minor dependent children, and their representatives.
“(9) The provision of information to survivors and next of kin of military decedents on mechanisms for registering complaints about, or requests for, additional assistance related to casualty assistance.
“(10) Liaison with the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Social Security Administration in order to ensure prompt and accurate resolution of issues relating to benefits administered by those agencies for survivors of military decedents.
“(11) Data collection regarding the incidence and quality of casualty assistance provided to survivors of military decedents, including surveys of such survivors and military and civilian members assigned casualty assistance duties.
“(12) The process by which the Department of Defense, upon request, provides information (in person and otherwise) to survivors of a military decedent on the cause of, and any investigation into, the death of such military decedent and on the disposition and transportation of the remains of such decedent, which process shall—
“(A) provide for the provision of such information (in person and otherwise) by qualified Department of Defense personnel;
“(B) ensure that information is provided as soon as possible after death and that, when requested, updates are provided, in accordance with the procedures established under this paragraph, in a timely manner when new information becomes available;
“(C) ensure that—
“(i) the initial provision of such information, and each such update, relates the most complete and accurate information available at the time, subject to limitations applicable to classified information; and
“(ii) incomplete or unverified information is identified as such during the course of the provision of such information or update; and
“(D) include procedures by which such survivors shall, upon request, receive updates or supplemental information from qualified Department of Defense personnel.
“(c) Adoption by Military Departments.—Not later than November 1, 2006, the Secretary of each military department shall prescribe regulations, or modify current regulations, on the policies and procedures of such military department on the provision of casualty assistance to survivors and next of kin of military decedents in order to conform such policies and procedures to the policy developed under subsection (a).
“(d) Report on Improvement of Casualty Assistance Programs.—Not later than December 1, 2006, the Secretary of Defense shall submit to the Committee on Armed Services of the Senate and the Committee on Armed Services of the House of Representatives a report that includes—
“(1) the assessment of the Secretary of the adequacy and sufficiency of the current casualty assistance programs of the military departments;
“(2) a plan for a system for the uniform provision to survivors of military decedents of personalized, accurate, and integrated information on the benefits and financial assistance available to such survivors through the casualty assistance programs of the military departments under subsection (c); and
“(3) such recommendations for other legislative or administrative action as the Secretary considers appropriate to enhance and improve such programs to achieve their intended purposes.
“(e) GAO Report.—
“(1) Report required.—Not later than July 1, 2006, the Comptroller General shall submit to the committees specified in subsection (d) a report on the evaluation by the Comptroller General of the casualty assistance programs of the Department of Defense and of such other departments and agencies of the Federal Government as provide casualty assistance to survivors and next of kin of military decedents.
“(2) Assessment.—The report shall include the assessment of the Comptroller General of the adequacy of the current policies and procedures of, and funding for, the casualty assistance programs covered by the report to achieve their intended purposes.”