Changes in Post 9-11 GI Bill for Veteran Students

Student veterans using the Post 9-11 GI Bill need to know that there are changes to the benefits and many take effect this week according to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The following is from Vantage Point, the VA blog:

Why the changes?

Education benefits are now available for folks in the National Guard that accumulated active duty time under Title 32, and expands options for non-degree seeking students, like flight school and apprenticeships. That change puts education benefits into the hands of tens of thousands of Veterans. But to allow more Veterans to take advantage of the Post-9/11 GI Bill (also known as Chapter 33), concessions had to be made to pay for it. Two changes to Chapter 33 will impact just about every student Veteran, and another change will change the way private school students receive tuition payments.

Break pay ends, but eligibility is expanded

Most Veterans are concerned over the loss of break pay, which were payments made during the holiday break and on either side of a summer semester (if classes were taken in the summer). Up until now, VA paid housing stipends for those days out of class. It was a help to students that needed additional income to pay rent. But there’s a catch that not everyone knew about: Those days were subtracted from the GI Bill eligibility time of 36 months. Now, you can use that time for more education. In a four-year degree plan, that additional time could add up to a semester or more of education benefits. That means a semester more of tuition and housing stipends.

Housing payments are now prorated and private, out-of-state and foreign school tuition is capped. The new rules signed into law established a national maximum of $17,500 to be paid to private and foreign schools.

You can get details on all the changes on the VA blog Vantage Point.

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