This website is not affiliated with the U.S. government or military.

Should My Husband Transfer GI Bills Now or Wait Until Right Before He Gets Out?

Q: My husband will unfortunately be getting out of the AF next year with 15 years in service. He currently has the Montgomery GI Bill. He will be taking classes this year until he gets out and needs to look into the Top-Up program to cover the amount left after TA. I’d also like to start taking classes towards my Master’s degree and we’d like to use his benefits towards paying for my classes, too. I’m not sure if I will be able to start before he gets out of the Air Force though. My question is, should he transfer over to the Post 9/11 GI Bill now or wait until right before he gets out of the AF so that he’s using his Montgomery for this year?

A: If he plans on using the Tuition Top-Up program, then he should stay with the Montgomery GI Bill and here’s why. Under Top-Up, the Air Force would pay his whole tuition bill. Then whatever is left over after Tuition Assistance (TA) pays its portion is billed to the VA. They convert that amount into months and days of entitlement and deduct the amount from his remaining MGIB benefits.

Using the same program under the Post 9/11 GI Bill, the VA deducts a full semester’s worth of benefits (usually four months) regardless of the amount of money they had to reimburse the Air Force. If it is a small amount that TA won’t pay, he would be better off paying it himself instead of losing four months of Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits.

As far as when he should convert to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, he can do that anytime … even after he is retired. All he has to do is go to the eBenefits website and submit VA Form 22-1990 when he is ready.

However, there is one thing he should know; if he uses up his MGIB benefits first and then switches, he would get an additional 12 months of eligibility. If he switches with MGIB benefits left, he only gets that same number of months he had and not the additional eligibility. That could be of importance depending on his education goal.

Also, I couldn’t get a feel from your question if you were expecting him to transfer benefits to you or not, but he would most likely not be able to. As of August 1st, all personnel incur an additional four year service obligation if they transfer benefits to a spouse or dependent child.

The only way he might be able to do it would be if he is getting out due to a statute that is preventing him from extending for four more years. If he is volunteering to get out, then he could not make a transfer request and get it approved.

Privacy Policy | About Us | FAQ | Terms of Service | Disclaimers | Do Not Sell My Personal Information (CA and NV residents)

Copyright © 2023 EducationDynamics. All Rights Reserved.

This is a private website that is not affiliated with the U.S. government, U.S. Armed Forces or Department of Veteran Affairs. U.S. government agencies have not reviewed this information. This site is not connected with any government agency. If you would like to find more information about benefits offered by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, please visit the official U.S. government web site for veterans’ benefits at

The sponsored schools featured on this site do not include all schools that accept GI Bill® funding or VA Benefits. To contact ArmyStudyGuide, email us.

Disclosure: EducationDynamics receives compensation for the featured schools on our websites (see “Sponsored Schools” or “Sponsored Listings” or “Sponsored Results”). So what does this mean for you? Compensation may impact where the Sponsored Schools appear on our websites, including whether they appear as a match through our education matching services tool, the order in which they appear in a listing, and/or their ranking. Our websites do not provide, nor are they intended to provide, a comprehensive list of all schools (a) in the United States (b) located in a specific geographic area or (c) that offer a particular program of study. By providing information or agreeing to be contacted by a Sponsored School, you are in no way obligated to apply to or enroll with the school.

This is an offer for educational opportunities that may lead to employment and not an offer for nor a guarantee of employment. Students should consult with a representative from the school they select to learn more about career opportunities in that field. Program outcomes vary according to each institution’s specific program curriculum. Financial aid may be available to those who qualify. The financial aid information on this site is for informational and research purposes only and is not an assurance of financial aid.

VFW $30,000 Scholarship!
Write an essay on the annual patriotic theme. This year’s theme is, “Why Is The Veteran Important?”