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Can I Use Two GI Bills at the Same Time?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: Is it possible to use the Chapter 30 GI Bill at one school and either the Chapter 30, or Post 9/11 GI Bill, at a second school? I am attending 3/4 time at the first school completely online. The second would be actually at the other school.

A: O.K., let’s break this down into a couple of different parts and address each part independently. First, you can’t use two separate GI Bills at the same time. Under the Rule of 48, if you qualify for two or more GI Bills, you can get a combined maximum benefit of 48 months. If you currently have Chapter 30, and you switch to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, you’ll get whatever months you have left on your Chapter 30 GI Bill, however, you also relinquish your eligibility to your Chapter 30 GI Bill. If you first exhaust your Chapter 30, and then switch to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, you can get up to an additional 12 months of education benefits.

The second part is yes, you can attend two different schools under the same GI Bill. However, it would be more lucrative to do it under the Post 9/11 GI Bill because then the VA will pay your tuition and fees at both schools up to the in-state maximum amount established by the VA for your state. You, in turn, get a monthly housing allowance and a book stipend. If you run this scenario under Chapter 30, then you get a fixed $1,368 per month and you have to pay your tuition, fees and all education-related expenses at both schools; the VA pays nothing directly to either one.

4 responses on “Can I Use Two GI Bills at the Same Time?

I was active duty for ten years then I separated from the USA and I joined the USAR. Does it mean that I am entitled to two different types of gi bills, the active and the SR? If yes, can I transfer the SR gi bill to my son and use the active myself?

Yes it does mean you are authorized two GI Bills and maybe three depending on when you were in the Army. If you paid into the Montgomery GI Bill – Active Duty (MGIB-AD), you have 36 months of entitlement, however that GI Bill does not have a transfer option to your son.

Once you joined the Reserves, you have entitlements (although it does not pay much) under the Montgomery GI Bill – Selected Reserves (MGIB-SR). The MGIB-SR does not have a transfer option either.

However, if you served on Title 10 order for six years after September 10, 2001, you also have the Post 9/11 GI Bill and could transfer benefits to your son, by extending your enlistment in the USAR for four years. You should be able to relinquish your MGIB-SR benefit, switch to the Post 9/11 GI Bill and make a transfer request. If that doesn’t work, then relinquish your MGIB-AD and make the request. The important thing is to make your request while you are still in the Resrves. Once out, it is too late.


I am deploying soon and was wondering if I can use my selected reserve gi bill and my post 9/11 gi bill together once I get back from the tour?

You can’t use them together in the sense that you can get paid from both of them at the same time. However, you can use the benefits from one GI Bill, switch to the other one and use benefits from it.
But, under the Rule of 48, the maximum number of months of benefits is limited to 48 between both GI Bills.

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