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How Can I Find Out If My GI Bill Is Still Good?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: How do I see if I can still use my GI Bill?

A: There really isn’t anyway to “see” your GI Bill, as in going to a website or anything, but I can go through the rules and you should be able to determine if your GI Bill is still good or not. If you have the Montgomery GI Bill, it has a 10-year shelf life, meaning it is only good up to 10 years from your date of discharge. So if you are beyond that 10-year mark, it has expired.

If you have the Post 9/11 GI Bill, it has a 15-year shelf life and it is still good because the earliest expiration date would be in 2016. Under either GI Bill, you could have up to 36 months of benefits. If you qualify for both GI Bills, then your combined maximum months of benefits is capped at 48 under the Rule of 48.

So, the next item would be if you have used any months of benefits before. If you are still within the shelf-life of either or both, then submit VA Form 22-1990, which is an application for GI Bill benefits and see what you get back. If your application is denied, then you know either your benefits have expired or have been used up. If you still have benefits left, then you will get back a Certificate of Eligibility showing how many months you have left to use. You will need the certificate when you enroll in school.

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