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If I Just Signed Up for the Post 9/11 GI Bill and I Retire in 2015, Can My Son Use My GI Bill?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: I signed up for the Post 9/11 GI Bill in Oct 2013. I am due to retire 2015. Can my son still use my GI Bill?

A: I’m not sure what you mean when you said you “signed up for the Post 9/11 GI Bill …” as it is already free for the taking just by you serving on active duty for at least 90 days after September 10, 2001. Did you “sign up” by submitting VA Form 22-1990? If so, all that did was get you your Certificate of Eligibility that you would need when enrolling in school.

However if you want to transfer some or all of your Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits to your son, you can still do that, but you would have to extend past your current retirement date of 2015 by another two years.

As of August 1st, if you want to transfer Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits to a dependent now, you have to have at least four years left on your enlistment at the time of your transfer request – regardless if you are retirement eligible (served 20 years or more). And once retired, it is too late to make a transfer of benefits.

If you are unsure how much you want to transfer to him, just give him a month or so for now. Once retired, you can give him more, if he already had received some entitlement from you while you were serving; you just can’t do the initial transfer after you have retired.

To make a transfer request, go to the milConnect website and follow the Transfer Your Education Benefits link. Enter in the number of months in your son’s DEER listing that you want to transfer to him. Come back there occasionally and keep watching for the Status Block to change to “Transfer Approved”. Once that happens, the transfer is complete.

A couple of months before your son is ready to start school, have him go to the eBenefits website and submit VA Form 22-1990e to get his Certificate of Eligibility that he would need when enrolling in school.

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