On June 30th, 2008, President Bush signed the new GI Bill into law, marking the end of a year and a half long struggle to ensure today's veterans get the benefits they have earned. This new benefit will cover the full cost of education at any public school in the country and many private schools. To qualify for the benefits, a veteran has to have served at least 90 days of active duty post-9/11 and have remaining entitlement. Only post-9/11 active duty service counts toward this benefit. Any remaining Chapter 30 or 1607 entitlement can be converted into this new education benefit. There is no requirement to buy in to qualify, and the benefits last for 15 years after separation.
This GI Bill provides upfront tuition payments directly to the school, and provides a book/supply stipend of $1,000 per year and a monthly living stipend. The tuition payments can be used at any public or private school but are capped at the cost of the most expensive public school in the state.
However, more expensive private schools offering a veterans-only scholarship will see that scholarship matched dollar for dollar up to the full cost of tuition. The monthly living stipend will be based on the Department of Defense Basic Housing Allowance (BAH) for that region. The stipend will be pegged to the E-5 with a dependent rate for the zip code of the school.
National Guard/Reserve - Veterans who have served at least 90 days of active duty service after September 10, 2001, will qualify for Chapter 33 (the new,
post-9/11 GI Bill). Unlike in Chapter 1607 (REAP), benefits for active duty service are based on cumulative active duty service, not the single longest deployment. National Guardsmen and reservists with three years of active duty service post-9/11 now qualify for full benefits under Chapter 33 (the new, post-9/11 GI Bill). As a general rule, only federal activations count toward total active duty service. Training, state call-ups and Title 38 AGR service do not qualify.
How can I compare the different GI Bills and decide which is right for me? - For service members eligible for more than one GI Bill program, there are many considerations to take into account when considering which GI Bill program to use. For more guidance on which program is right for you, please check out our the GI Bill BENEFITS CALCULATOR on this great site.