The Post- 9/11 GI Bill is an education benefit program provided by the VA for individuals who served on active duty after September 10, 2001. This program is extensive as it covers tuition and fees, while also providing a monthly housing allowance. Despite the program being created for Veterans, the program allows the education benefits to be passed down to family members of a Veteran as well.
Quick Requirements To Receive The Post 9/11 GI Bill
You must have served for at least six years in the armed forces (active duty and/or Selected Reserve) on the date you get approved to transfer your GI Bill.
You must also agree to serve four additional years in the armed forces from the date of approval.
OR: You must have served at least 10 years in the armed forces (active duty and/or Selected Reserve) on the date of approval.
You must have your transfer requests submitted and approved while you are still in the armed forces.
Click here to see our blog post on how to apply and use your Post 9/11 GI Bill.
Quick Points On How The GI Bill Can Be Used For Your Family
The Post 9/11 GI Bill allows you to transfer all or some of your unused benefits to your spouse or your children.
The GI Bill can be used in any combination of your children and your spouse. Example: As the Post 9/11 GI Bill covers 36 months of tuition, you can give your wife 18 months and both of your children 9 months.
Spouse And Children Eligibility Requirements
Your spouse must be enrolled in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS). Click here to learn How To Register Your Family Members in DEERS.
Your children must be listed as dependents when you file your taxes in order for them to receive GI Bill benefits.
Your children must also be enrolled in DEERS.
How Do I Transfer The GI Bill To My Family
Contact a Veteran Representative at the school your family member desires to attend. The representative will provide assistance in the transfer process.
OR: Go online to milConnect using a Common Access Card (CAC), DoD Self-Service Logon (DS Logon), or a DFAS Account (myPay).
milConnect Transfer Process Guide
When Can My Family Start Using My GI Bill Benefits?
Your spouse may start to use benefits immediately after approval
Your spouse may use the benefits if you remain in the Armed Forces or after you leave active duty
Your spouse is not eligible for the monthly housing allowance if you are still active duty
Your spouse can use the benefits for up to 15 years after your last separation from active duty
Your children may start to use the benefits only after you have completed at least 10 years of service in the armed forces
Your children may use the benefits while you remain in the armed forces or after separation from active duty
Your child may not use the benefits until he or she has received a secondary school (high school) diploma or another certificate of equal value OR if your child is 18 years old
Your child is entitled to the monthly housing allowance stipend even if you are on active duty
Your children are not subject to the 15-year delimiting date like your spouse would be, but your children may not use the benefit after they turn 26 years old
The Post 9/11 GI Bill is an amazing program for Veterans and their families, and the benefits it gives can be an amazing asset to start civilian careers. Make sure you take full advantage of the benefits available to you and get started with civilian life on the right foot!