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How Can I Request a One-Year GI Bill Extension?

Q: Hi, Could I get advice on whether I could request a one year extension/or appeal if I signed up for the Post 9/11 GI Bill? When the Post 9/11 GI bill passed, the VA rep admitted that he was fairly new on all the details, but indicated that I would be receiving extra income for housing, so I bought off on it. The problem: I could not take it back once I found out that I would not be able to request a one year extension (had I not transferred to the new Post 9/11 GI Bill. I received a letter indicating that I exhausted my GI Bill benefits and had a year to appeal. Ugh … any advice?

A: What the VA Rep told you is true when going to school under the Post 9/11 GI Bill. If you are in a degree program or in a non-degree program at a school also teaching degree programs, not taking all online courses and have a rate of pursuit of greater-than-half-time, then you get a monthly housing allowance calculated on the zip code of your school and paid at the rate of an E-5 with dependents. The VA pays your tuition and fees up to the in-state maximum and you would get a book stipend calculated at $41.67 per credit (up to $1,000 per year).

I’m not entirely sure what you are trying to extend or appeal. If you want to switch back to your old GI Bill, that is nearly impossible. The VA is very explicit that changing to the Post 9/11 GI bill is a one-way road and that switching is irrevocable.

As far as your one-year extension, are you trying to extend the delimiting date? The Post 9/11 GI Bill has a 15-year delimiting date, so the first New GI Bill won’t expire until 2016. Your old Montgomery GI Bill was good for only 10 years. If you switched to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, you shouldn’t be in a bind for time.

If you previously exhausted your old GI Bill entitlement, you could get an additional 12 months of Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits unless you have already used your 48 months which is the maximum combined months of entitlement a veteran can get. If you had not exhausted your old GI Bill months of benefits when you switched, then you did not get the additional months of entitlement.

Based on your question, I tried to cover all the bases on what I thought you meant. If I missed the mark, please clarify and re-submit your question.

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