Eligibility for interment in Arlington National Cemetery

The Army has announced its recommendations for eligibility changes at Arlington National Cemetery – changes which would reduce those eligible for below-ground burials but still offer above-ground inurnment of cremated remains for many veterans.

In addition to preserving 1,000 gravesites for current and future Medal of Honor recipients, the proposed revised criteria for those who honorably serve the nation are as follows:

For below-ground interment:

For above-ground inurnment:

“The Army’s decision to restrict retirees from in-ground interment may be a concern for those whose end-of-life plans included this traditional burial at Arlington,” Atkins said. “While the changes do accommodate above-ground inurnment, we will need to assess the impact to all previously eligible servicemembers and take advantage of the public comment period under the Federal Registry to share the results of that assessment.”

According to Arlington officials, a federal rule can take up to nine months before being enacted and will include a public comment period, in which any concerns and questions would be addressed. Once the final rule, with any potential changes, is published in the Federal Registry, there will be an “as of” effective date. This will not affect any planned burials which are in the queue at that time.

Updated: April 15, 2021
Curator: Ed Moore