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Can I Transfer My Post 9/11 GI Bill Benefits Now or Do I Have to Wait?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: I am considering transferring my Post 9/11 GI Bill to my spouse and have a few questions. I currently have almost 9 years served and just reenlisted for two a few months back. Can I transfer the benefit now or do I have to wait until I am able to reenlist again? Also, if she decides to go to school online, would she rate the housing payment even though I am receiving BAH?

A: You have to wait until your reenlistment window opens up again and this time go for at least four more years. The transfer of benefits requirements include:
• currently serving
• having serving for at least six years after September 10, 2001
• having at least four years left on your enlistment at the time of your transfer request.

With nine years of service and still serving, you meet the first two requirements, but not the last one. And as of August 1st, you have to now meet that last requirement regardless if you are retirement eligible (having served for at least 20 years) or not.

Once the transfer is complete, and your wife has requested her Certificate of Eligibility by submitting VA Form 22-1990e from the eBenefits website and in school, the VA would pay her tuition and eligible fees up to the resident in-state rate directly to her school and she would get the book stipend once per semester (up to the $1,000 per year cap).

But because you are still serving and she is using transferred Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits, she would not get the Monthly Housing Allowance (MHA) regardless if she goes to school online or on campus. However, if she chooses to wait and go to school after you are out, she would get the MHA.

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