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Having Transferred My Post 9/11 GI Bill Entitlement, Can I Now Use My Hazelwood Act Benefits?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: Hi, I have a question using the Hazelwood Act sort of in conjunction with the Post 9/11 GI Bill. I used 24 of the 36 months of my Post 9/11 to get a degree. Then I transferred the remaining 12 months of my Post 9/11 GI Bill to my spouse. Does this mean I can now freely use the Hazelwood Act to go back to school? Or does the Post 9/11 have to be completely exhausted, by me or a dependent in order to start using the Hazelwood Act? I’m aware of the eligibility requirements for using the Hazelwood Act, and I do qualify, but it’s a little fuzzy when it comes to using up the Post 9/11 prior to using the Hazelwood Act. Thanks!

A: What the Hazelwood Act rules state are that you can’t use the Hazelwood Act in conjunction with the Post 9/11 GI Bill to pay for the same classes. This causes some confusion in that those with the Montgomery GI Bill can use both it and the Hazelwood Act at the same time and for the same classes. Different GI Bill – different rules.

Being you transferred your remaining unused Post 9/11 GI Bill entitlement to your wife, you should be able to use your Hazelwood Act benefits now as your remaining Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits left to use would now show zero.

However if you end up with classes that the Hazelwood Act would not pay for, you could always transfer benefits from your wife back to you. As the sponsor, you always retain the right to revoke and either reallocate or use the benefit yourself – even after retiring from the military.

Most likely it shouldn’t be an issue as your Hazelwood Act should pay for all your classes as long as you stay within the limits of the Act.

If she plans to use them, then I would leave those benefits with her and just use your 150 hours of Hazelwood Act benefits. That is enough credit hours for about 8 semesters of school.

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