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Is It True a 70% Permanent Disability Rating Doesn’t Qualify My Daughter for Chapter 35 Benefits?

Q: Am I to understand that a 70% permanent disability rating does not qualify my daughter to receive Chapter 35 benefits as a dependent? Her father is an amputee from a service related incident.

A: That is correct. The exact wording is “A Veteran who died or is permanently and totally disabled as the result of a service-connected disability.” At 70% he is not totally (100%) disabled. I know this sounds cruel and harsh, but it is the rule governing the Chapter 35 GI Bill.

However, that should not disdain her from going to school. There are thousands of scholarships, grants and work/study programs that she can apply for. One of her first moves should be to fill out and send in a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) application. She will get back a report as far as what she qualifies for in the Pell Grant and other types of money for her education. That will give her a starting point.

Then she should start working the scholarships available for children of disabled veterans. One good site that comes to mind is FinAid. Two other programs are the Scholarships for Military Children Program and HomeFrontAmerica.

And here is a comprehensive list of resources from U.S. Veterans Magazine. These four sources were from a couple minutes of searching. Just Google “scholarships for children of veterans” and start working the list of sources returned.

This doesn’t include all of the scholarships available to non-military children. That is a whole search of itself.

Many schools offer their own scholarships and work/study programs. If you are not familiar with work/study, it is where her college would give her a job that requires a few hours per week of work in exchange for a certain amount of reduction in college tuition.

My point is the money is out there, but it will require some work to get it. Hundreds of thousands of dollars each year go un-awarded because students do not apply for it.

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