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How Do I Stop the $100 Per Month Fee and Switch to the Post 9/11 GI Bill?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: Maybe I’m making this too hard, but how exactly do I go about changing my Montgomery GI Bill (which I’m still paying into) to the Post 9/11 GI Bill? I’ve weighed the options and the Post 9/11 GI Bill is better suited for me and my family. I just want to change my benefits and stop the $100 a month from being taken! Thanks.

A: Being you are still paying into the Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB), you are better off to pay the $100 per month for 12 months than to try and stop it. Once you are fully vested in the MGIB, you can always switch over to the Post 9/11 GI Bill and get your $1,200 contribution fee back once you have used up all of your entitlement. Your contribution fee comes back to you as part of your last housing allowance payment.

The months of entitlement under each GI Bill is the same after three years of service – 36 months, but under the Rule of 48, if you have both GI Bills, the maximum combined months of benefit is capped at 48 months. So you can use up your 36 months of MGIB benefits, switch to the Post 9/11 GI Bill and get an additional 12 months of benefits, or you can convert your 36 months of MGIB over to the Post 9/11GI Bill, but not get the additional time.

The other big difference between the two GI Bills is the transfer of benefits option of the Post 9/11 GI Bill. Once you have served for at least six years and have at least four years left on your enlistment, you can submit a transfer request to give your dependents some (or all) of your benefits.

However with that said, most servicemembers are better off staying with the MGIB while on active duty. Just be sure to switch to the Post 9/11 GI Bill and complete the benefits transfer before you get out. Once you are out, it is too late.

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