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How Do I Get Reimbursed for an IT Certification Test?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: I retired in 2008, so I believe that I am under the Montgomery GI Bill, and not the 9/11 GI Bill. I am in the process of registering for a IT certification test. What do I need to do to make sure that I can get reimbursed for this test? Do I request reimbursement in advance, or do I pay for the test, and request reimbursement after I take it? I believe that the GI Bill covers the cost regardless of pass or fail (although I don’t intend to fail). Thanks.

A: You have to request reimbursement after you take the test, because you will have to show proof of what you paid to take it. The Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB) will reimburse you up to $2,000 of the cost of the test. Anything above that amount, you will be responsible for paying. If your test costs less than $2,000, then the VA will only pay up to the actual cost of the test.

You are correct in saying the VA will reimburse you for the cost of the test whether you pass or fail and they will even reimburse you to take it again if you do fail it the first time.

Previous to the implementation of the GI Bill 2.0, the Post 9/11 GI Bill would only reimburse an individual for one test. Now effective August 1st, it too will reimburse for multiple tests and will also start paying to take tests such as GMAT, SAT, LSAT and CLEP.

To claim your reimbursement, send the VA the following information:

  • Your name, address and Social Security number or VA claim number
  • The name of the test you took and the date you took it
  • A copy of each test results for each test taken, whether or not you passed it
  • The name and address of the organization issuing the license or certificate (not necessarily the organization that administered the test)
  • The cost of each test.
  • This statement: “I authorize release of my test information to VA.”
  • Your signature and date signed.

Also attached a copy of your test result or a copy of your license or certification. The VA will not reimburse students for:

  • registration fees
  • preparation guides
  • processing fees.

If you retired in 2008 with Title 10 time (active duty or Selected Reserve with Title 10 in support of a contingency operation), you probably also qualify for the Post 9/11 GI Bill. If so, and because it is after August 1st, you could use either program.

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