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Is It Possible Our Daughter May Be Eligible for My Ex-Husband’s GI Bill Benefits?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: My ex-husband was in the USMC from 1984 – June 2008. He served in Desert Storm and Iraq. He never put in an monies towards his GI Bill (The $100/month requirement for his first year of service). I heard things have changed and our daughter may be eligible for his GI benefits. Can you please let me know if this is true or what if anything she may be entitled to if he transfers his benefits to her? Thank you.

A: Your husband most likely is eligible for the Post 9/11 GI Bill. His 36 months of education benefit at the 100% level are free to him just for his service of at least three years after September 10, 2001.

Under the New GI Bill, he can go to school and the VA would pay his tuition directly to his school. If he attends a public school, his tuition would be paid in full at the resident rate. If he chooses to attend private school, the VA would pay up to $17,500 per year.

Monthly, he can get a housing allowance that averages $1,300 across the U.S. It is calculated based on the zip code of his school and the number of credits he takes. Also each semester, he can get a book stipend calculated at $41.67 per credit up to the $1,000 per year limit.

Unfortunately, the way Congress wrote the Post 9/11 GI Bill rules, he would have had to serve “on or after August 1, 2009” and still be serving to make a transfer of benefits to your daughter and get it approved. By that time, your ex-husband had been out for over a year. So while he has benefits he can use, he would not be able to transfer them to your daughter.

Comments  (4)

The only other way the children maybe eligible for education benefits is through the VA, and he has to be 100% Service Connected Disabled, and they have to be under the age of 23

posted by Maj. R.E. Walker
6:01 am on September 30, 2012

What the Maj. is talking about is the Chapter 35 GI Bill. And I wanted to clarify something on the age Sir – it is under the age of 26.

posted by Ron Kness
12:02 pm on September 30, 2012

My ex-husband has not served since 1993 or 1994 if I am reading the above correct our daughter won’t have access to his gi bill because I am sure he didn’t transfer if to her before her got out…..right?

posted by Jennifer
2:06 pm on June 30, 2013

In 1994 the GI Bill in effect was the Montgomery GI Bill. Unfortunately that GI Bill did not have any transfer options, so he would not have been able to make a transfer if he wanted to. So the reason your daughter won’t have access to your husband’s GI Bill was not because he did not transfer it, but because he could not transfer it; big difference, it was not his fault.

posted by Ron Kness
11:46 am on July 5, 2013
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