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How Do I Get My $1,200 Dollars Back Since I Did Not Use My GI Bill?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: How do I get my $1,200 dollars back since I did not use my GI Bill?

A: The short answer is you don’t. Your service branch fulfilled its obligation by making the 36 months of the Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB) available to you to use in exchange for you signing up and making your $1,200 contribution. Whether you ever used it or not, is not their problem. It is similar to putting escrow money down on a house and then backing out of the deal. Normally, you don’t get your money back.

The long answer is there is one way to get your money back, but you had to be eligible for, and switch to, the Post 9/11 GI Bill with your 36 months of Montgomery GI Bill benefits intact. Once you use up all 36 months of Post 9/11 GI Bill entitlement, you get your $1,200 contribution back as part of your last housing allowance payment. If you switch with less than 36 months of MGIB benefits left, then you get a prorated amount of your $1,200 contribution back.

Comments  (2)

I retired from the Navy in 2008 and feel that my son, who is heading off to college, should be able to use my benefit because I was not on Active Duty in 2009. Do you think they will ever change the eligibilty requirements to the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill?

posted by Wallace Johnson
2:12 pm on April 13, 2011

Congress may, but the last bill that addressed that issue never even made it to a vote and it has since expired. So, it will take a legislator to re-introduce a bill to resurrect that issue. If it isn’t more popular now than it was with the last bill, I don’t see it passing.

posted by Ron Kness
11:46 am on April 19, 2011
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