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Life Insurance

Update Your Insurance Beneficiary

Your VA Life Insurance Beneficiary is the person you have designated to receive your insurance proceeds in the event of your death. It is very important to make sure your beneficiary information is always up to date. This will make it much easier on your family members to file a claim and receive the benefit quickly.

You should review your beneficiary information at least once a year to make sure everything is current. Even though you may have the same beneficiary, they might have changed addresses. A regular beneficiary review each year will make sure you capture these changes.

Certain life events such a marriage or the birth of a child or divorce should also trigger a review of your beneficiary information. This will save your family members a lot of unnecessary grief later on.

Click on your VA Life Insurance program below to learn how to update your beneficiary:

Updating Your Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance (SGLI) Beneficiary

Note: You may name anyone as your SGLI beneficiary without his/her consent. However, your spouse will be notified if you name a beneficiary other than your spouse.

Updating Your Veterans' Group Life Insurance Beneficiary

The quickest way to update your VGLI beneficiary is to access your VGLI Policy online.

You may also:

Updating Other VA Life Insurance Policies

Other VA Life Insurance beneficiaries with policy numbers beginning with V, RH, J, RS, K or W should download 29-336, Designation of Beneficiary and Optional Settlement. Complete the form and mail to us at:
VARO&IC (B&O)
P.O. BOX 8638
PHILADELPHIA, PA 19101

Changing a Beneficiary Designation for a Competent Veteran

In order to change a beneficiary designation for a competent Veteran, please do one of the following:

  • If the Veteran is competent and is able to sign his name, he should complete and sign a beneficiary designation form; OR
  • If the Veteran is competent but cannot sign his name, he should make a mark in place of his signature. Two disinterested parties must witness the mark and sign a beneficiary designation form. The two witnesses cannot be beneficiaries. OR
  • If the Veteran is competent and is not able to sign or make his mark, send us a letter explaining the veteran's condition.

Changing a Beneficiary Designation for an Incompetent Veteran

If the Veteran is incompetent and able to understand the nature of his/her actions, please do one of the following:

  • Have the veteran's attending physician witness him sign or mark the beneficiary designation form. The attending physician should attach a letter stating the veteran understood his act when he signed or marked the form; OR
  • If the veteran cannot sign or make a mark, complete a beneficiary designation form leaving the signature blank. Then, have the veteran's attending physician attach a letter stating that the veteran is unable to sign or make a mark but does understand his actions. The letter should also explain why the veteran cannot sign or make his mark.

If the Veteran is incompetent and not able to understand the nature of his/her actions, only a court appointed guardian can change the beneficiary designation for the veteran. In addition, the court appointed guardian must obtain a specific court order authorizing them to change the beneficiary designation.

Please have the court appointed guardian complete a beneficiary designation form. Also, include a copy of the guardianship documents and the specific court order with the form.

For information on how to become a court appointed guardian and obtain a specific court order contact your state court system, the number of which can be found in the blue pages of your telephone directory.

FAQs