Upcoming Changes to the Post-9/11 GI-Bill
The Post-9/11 Veterans Education Assistance Improvements Act of 2010 was recently signed into law. The law makes these changes by date:
Effective August 1, 2009, but not payable until October 1, 2011:
Active Guard Service Credited: Expands the Post-9/11 GI Bill to include Active Service performed by National Guard members under title 32 U.S.C. for the purpose of organizing, administering, recruiting, instructing, or training the National Guard; or under section 502(f) for the purpose of responding to a national emergency.
Effective March 5, 2011:
Active Duty Tuition and Fees Brought in Line with Veteran’s: Limits active duty members to the net cost for tuition and fees prorated based on the eligibility tiers (40%-100%) previously established for Veterans. Same limitations apply to transferee spouses of active duty service members
Effective August 1, 2011:
Tuiton and Fee Cap Changes for Veterans and Active Duty:
For Veterans and their transferees,simplifies the tuition and fee rates for those attending a public school and creates a national maximum for those enrolled in a private or foreign school:
- Pays all public school in-state tuition and fees;
- Private and foreign school costs are capped at $17,500 annually;
- The Yellow Ribbon Program still exists for out-of-state fees and costs above the cap.
For Active Duty Members and their transferees, creates a national rate for those active duty members enrolled in a private or foreign school pursuing a degree
- Pays all public school in-state tuition and fees;
- Private and foreign school costs are capped at $17,500 per academic year (an academic year begins August 1)
Monthly “Kickers”Allows VA to pay MGIB (chapter 30) and MGIB-SR (chapter 1606) ‘kickers’, or college fund payments, on a monthly basis instead of a lump sum at the beginning of the term
Proration of Housing: Prorates housing allowance by the student’s rate of pursuit (rounded to the nearest tenth). A student training at a rate of pursuit of 75% would receive 80% of the BAH rate
Break Pay Eliminated: Break or interval pay is no longer payable under any VA education benefit program unless under an Executive Order of the President or due to an emergency, such as a natural disaster or strike. This means that when your semester ends (e.g. December 15th), your housing allowance is paid for the first 15 days of December only and begins again when your next semester begins (e.g. January 10th) and is paid for the remaining days of January. Entitlement that previously would have been used for break pay will be available for use during a future enrollment.
Affects Students in Other VA Educational Programs: Students using other VA education programs are included in this change. Monthly benefits will be pro-rated in the same manner.
Licensure Reimbursement Provision Expanded: Allows reimbursement for more than one “license or certification” test (previously only one test was allowed).
Reimbursement of Entrance Exams: Allows reimbursement of fees paid to take national exams used for admission to an institution of higher learning (e.g., SAT, ACT, GMAT, LSAT).
VRE Students Given GI Bill Housing Option in lieu of Subsistence Allowance: Allows those who are eligible for both Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (chapter 31) benefits and Post-9/11 GI Bill (chapter 33) benefits to choose the Post-9/11 GI Bill’s monthly housing allowance instead of the chapter 31 subsistence allowance.
Public Health Officers Given Dependent Entitlement: NOAA and PHS personnel are now eligible to transfer their entitlement to eligible dependents
Effective October 1, 2011:
Non-college Degree (NCD) Programs Now Included: Pays actual net cost for in-State tuition and fees at public NCD institutions. At private and foreign institutions, pays the actual net costs for in-state tuition and fees or $17,500, whichever is less. Also pays up to $83 per month for books and supplies.
Apprenticseship and OJT Programs Now Included: On-the-job and apprenticeship training: Pays a monthly benefit amount prorated based on time in program and up to $83 per month for books and supplies.
Flight Training Now Included: Per academic year, pays the actual net costs for in-state tuition and fees assessed by the school or $10,000, whichever is less.
Correspondence Training Now Included: Per academic year, pays the actual net costs for in-state tuition and fees assessed by the school or $8,500, whichever is less.
Modified Housing Allowance for Distance Learning: Housing allowance is now payable to students (other than those on active duty) enrolled solely in distance learning. The housing allowance payable is equal to ½ the national average BAH for an E-5 with dependents, meaning the full-time rate for an individual eligible at the 100% eligibility tier would be $673.50/month for 2011.
Active Duty Students Get Stipend: Allows students on active duty to receive a books and supplies stipend.
Source: James F. Walsh, Jr., Chief, Benefits & Entitlements Policy, HQ, USAF, ATTN: AF/REPP, 1150 AF Pentagon, Washington, DC 20330
For more information on the GI Bill: http://www.gibill.va.gov/
As of 12 April 2011