Using the GI Bill

When To Use the GI Bill

GI Bill benefits have an expiration date, determined by the chapter of eligibility and last date on active duty or date of discharge.

Where to use the GI Bill

The State Approving Agency must approve programs before an eligible student can be paid. When approved, an eligible student receives benefits while attending college, or receiving technical and vocational training at a non-college degree school. (Different rules apply for the Post-9/11 GI Bill.) The GI Bill will also cover approved:

To find an approved programs, search the VA's approved program database. If the desired program is not approved, contact the Department of Higher Education.

Note: Apprenticeships are approved for GI Bill purposes by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Workforce Development, Division of Apprentice Training. Contact them at 617-626-5409.

How To Use the GI Bill

  1. Apply for benefits.
  2. Apply to an approved school or training program. The student must be registered in courses before visiting the Veterans Certifying Official (VCO).
    Contact the VCO at the school or training program. The VCO must certify the student’s enrollment to the VA. For OJT programs, the student must also sign a VA Form 22-8864, Other On the Job Training and Apprenticeship Training Agreement and Standards, provided by the VCO.
  3. Maintain good grades and verify your enrollment monthly.

How To Use the GI Bill For Licensing and Certification Exams

  1. Apply for benefits.
  2. Take an approved exam.
  3. Complete VA Form 22-0803 [.PDF] and submit to Buffalo VA Regional Processing Office (see Apply for Benefits page for mailing address). Or complete the form online using VONAPP.

Remaining Eligibility

To inquire about remaining months of eligibility to use towards a different program, contact the VA at 1-888-GI-BILL-1 (1-888-442-4551) to speak with a Veterans Benefits Counselor. If you qualify, you will then have to complete a VA Form 22-1995, Request For Change of Program or Place of Training, or apply online using VONAPP after you have been accepted into the new program.