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Can My Wife and I Use the Montgomery GI Bill and Post 9/11 GI Bill at the Same Time?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: Can my wife and I use the MGIB/Post 9/11 GI Bill at the same time? Or if I still have money left to my GI Bill after I finish my degree can she use it? Because I’m planning to study in a foreign school where the tuition fee is cheaper, what are the requirements to study in a foreign school? Can I only take the minimum units per semester? Is the VA going to pay for my tuition and BAH until I finish my degree? Thanks!

A: If you are not a dual member couple, then no. If she does not have her own GI Bill, there is no way you could still have both GI Bills. If you switch to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, you have to relinquish your MGIB benefits, so there is nothing left to use. If you first use up your MGIB benefits and then switch, you would get an additional 12 months of Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits.

Once you have the Post 9/11 GI Bill and meet the service requirements for transfer, you could then make a transfer of benefits to her. It is possible that both of you could use the Post 9/11 GI Bill at the same time, but not the MGIB and Post 9/11 GI Bill, which is how I took your question to be worded.

An the beauty of it is that if you both go to school once you are out, both of you can get your tuition and fees paid, and receive two housing allowances and book stipends for as long as you are in school and still have unused remaining benefits left to use.

However if she does have her own Post 9/11 GI Bill and you the MGIB, then yes, you both could use your individual GI Bills at the same time.

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