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If I Start School First, Using My Boyfriend’s Transferred Benefits, Will He Still Be Able to Use His GI Bill?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: My boyfriend and I are planning on getting married, but I want to start school before we do. He wants to give me his GI bill but if I start school first will I still be able to use it? And he is through the Louisiana National Guard and we reside in Texas now. Will I be able to use his Louisiana GI bill in a Texas university?

A: If the only federal GI Bill your boyfriend has is the Montgomery GI Bill – Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR), which is the federal GI Bill for National Guardsmen and Reservists, then he can’t transfer it to you because it does not have a transfer option to it. He can use it if he has been in less than ten years, but he can’t transfer it. Just so you know, once he hits his ten years of service mark it expires, as well as expiring when he gets out of the Guard.

You referenced the Louisiana GI Bill, but a LA ANRG spouse can only use that if his/her military spouse was deceased or disabled as a result of military service in a war zone. So that one won’t work either (nor would you want it to).

However, if your boyfriend deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan on a Title 10 order in support of a contingency operation or served on a Title 32 Section 502(f) order (State orders used in a national emergency), he could have some eligibility under the Post 9/11 GI Bill that he may be able to transfer to you once you are married and if he meets the transfer of benefits eligibility requirements. But as a girlfriend, he can’t do much for you as far as transferring educational benefits to you even if he has them.

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