LD 378
PUBLIC Law, Chapter 208

on - Session - 127th Maine Legislature
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An Act To Facilitate the Issuance of a Gravestone for a Deceased Veteran with No Next of Kin

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:

Sec. 1. 22 MRSA §2843-A, sub-§1, ¶D,  as amended by PL 2009, c. 159, §1, is further amended to read:

D. "Next of kin" means a person having the following relationship to the subject, in the following order of priority:

(1) The spouse;

(1-A) A domestic partner. For purposes of this section, "domestic partner" means the partner of the subject who:

(a) Is a mentally competent adult;

(b) Had been legally domiciled with the subject for at least 12 months immediately preceding the death of the subject;

(c) Is not legally married to or legally separated from another individual;

(d) Was the sole partner of the subject; and

(e) Was jointly responsible with the subject for each other's common welfare as evidenced by joint living arrangements, joint financial arrangements or joint ownership of real or personal property;

(2) An adult son or daughter;

(3) A parent;

(4) An adult brother or sister;

(5) An adult grandchild;

(6) An adult niece or nephew who is the child of a brother or sister;

(7) A maternal grandparent;

(8) A paternal grandparent;

(9) An adult aunt or uncle;

(10) An adult first cousin; or

(11) Any other adult relative in descending order of blood relationship . ; or

(12) If the subject is a veteran and has no known living spouse or adult relative, the Adjutant General or the Adjutant General's designee. For purposes of this paragraph, "veteran" has the same meaning as in section 2900, subsection 1, paragraph B.

Sec. 2. 22 MRSA §2900, sub-§3,  as enacted by PL 2011, c. 318, §1, is amended to read:

3. Sharing information.  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a funeral director , the Adjutant General or other authorized person under subsection 2 may share information concerning cremated remains in the funeral director's or other authorized person's possession with the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, the Adjutant General, a veterans' service organization or a national cemetery to determine whether the cremated remains are those of a veteran.

Sec. 3. 37-B MRSA §515  is enacted to read:

§ 515 Adjutant General as next of kin

If the Adjutant General is next of kin to a veteran under Title 22, section 2843-A, the Adjutant General shall ensure that the veteran receives all benefits to which the veteran is entitled, including a grave marker or other death benefit from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs.

Effective 90 days following adjournment of the 127th Legislature, First Regular Session, unless otherwise indicated.

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