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With Eight Months of Service, Can I Switch from the MGIB to the Post 9/11 GI Bill?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: I signed up Montgomery GI Bill at MEPS before I left for boot camp, and they got $100 every month away directly from my pay check. I was honorably discharged from regular Army a month ago. I know that I am not eligible for the Montgomery GI Bill as I only served 8 months, but can I switch my MGIB to Post 9/11 GI Bill? And how?

A: Because you don’t qualify for the MGIB, there isn’t anything to switch from, however, it sounds like you may qualify at least for the minimum Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits. It really will depend on if you have the required 90-days of active duty after you got out of IADT (Basic and AIT). Training time does not count toward GI Bill eligibility.

If you meet minimum eligibility, then you would be at the 40% level, meaning the VA would pay up to 40% of the maximum tuition and fees amount established for the state where your school is located. You would get 40% of both the housing allowance and book stipend.

To see if you qualify, submit VA Form 22-1990 either online through the VONAPP website or download the form, fill it out, attached the supporting documentation and mail it to the address on the form. If you qualify, you will get back a Certificate of Eligibility that you will need when you enroll in school. If you don’t qualify, you will get back a disapproved status and then you will know for sure you did not have the required time to meet the minimum eligibility criteria.

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