Summary of VA Education Benefits
Only the VA can make the determination of a student’s eligibility to receive education benefits. All inquiries about eligibility and applications should be directed to VA. Students can apply by calling 1-888-GI-BILL-1 (1-888-442-4551), or online using VONAPP.
Chapter 30: The Montgomery GI Bill - Active Duty in general is for individuals who have: been on Active Duty since July 1, 1985, who have contributed $1,200 to an education fund and have completed a qualifying amount of “honorable” active-duty service. They receive 36 months of full-time benefits.
Chapter 32: The Veterans Educational Assistance Program (VEAP) is for individuals who initially entered active duty from January 1, 1977 to June 30, 1985. The benefit rate varies with the amount of the serviceman’s contribution while on active duty.
Chapter 33: The new Post-9/11 GI Bill, which was signed into law on June 30, 2008, will not go into effect until August 1, 2009. This new benefit provides educational assistance for servicemembers who served on active duty on or after September 11, 2001.
Chapter 34-30: Some persons eligible for Chapter 34 (who enlisted during the Vietnam era between August 4, 1964 and December 31, 1976) also completed enough active duty after July 1, 1985 to qualify for eligibility under Chapter 30 with no required financial contribution.
Chapter 35: The Dependents Educational Assistance Program is for the dependent(s) of a member of the Armed Forces who has died while on active duty or as the result of a service-connected disability, or is 100% permanently and totally disabled for a service-related reason. Dependents receive up to 45 months of full-time benefits. Children generally are eligible for benefits between the ages of 18 and 26, but in certain instances benefits may begin before age 18 and continue beyond age 26.
Chapter 1606: The Montgomery GI Bill - Selective Reserves is for individuals who incurred an initial six-year Select Reserve obligation after June 30, 1985, in the Reserves or National Guard. In general they must remain in a Select Reserve status during their 14-year period of eligibility.
Chapter 1607: The Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP) is a new benefit providing educational assistance to members of the reserve components – Selected Reserve and Individual Ready Reserve – who are called or ordered to active service in response to a war or national emergency, as declared by the President or Congress. Generally, a member of a reserve component who serves on active duty on or after September 11, 2001 under title 10 U.S.C., for at least 90 consecutive days under a contingency operation is eligible. The benefit rate varies with the amount of time served on active duty.
Chapter 31: Vocational Rehabilitation is for disabled veterans. This is the most unique program and each school is assigned a Vocational Rehabilitation Specialist to work with these students, and to assist the School Certifying Official. These disabled veterans go through a testing process to determine if they are eligible for the benefit. If eligible, the VA sends an Authorization. Full tuition, fees, books and supplies parking are paid by the VA to the school.
- VA claimants under Chapters 30, 32 and 1606 need to send in proof of DoD “kickers” or of additional contributions to Chapter 30 while on active duty to request increased payment rates.
- Service-persons under Chapter 30 who are receiving DoD Tuition Assistance (TA) can only request benefits under CH 30 Top-Up to cover the part of tuition and fees which is not covered by TA.
- Chapter 30, 32 and 35 provide re-imbursement for approved Licensing and Certification Tests.
- Chapters 1606 and 1607 can be reimbursed for Licensing and Certification Tests effective January 6, 2006.