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What Effect Does Reaching a Higher Post 9/11 GI Bill Tier Have on My Entitlement?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: I presently am qualified for 60% of the Post 9/11 GI Bill which I have transferred to my children. I am about to start an AGR (Title 32) position on active duty that will ultimately qualify for 100%. My questions are: 1. Must I separate service at the end of the 3 year period to obtain these benefits? 2. Does the “window” of 36 months’ worth of benefits start over for my dependents once I reached another tier? Any help or direction will help. Thank you.

A: To answer your first question, no you do not have to get out to qualify for the increased percentage. As you work up through the tier percentages, you would have to update the VA so they can keep your current authorized tier percentage accurate and thus the payments accurate if your children are using their Post 9/11 GI Bill transferred benefits at the time.

Of course, if they will not go to school under the Post 9/11 GI Bill for at least two years, at which time you’ll be at the 100% tier anyway, then you would only have to updated it once (by sending in copies of your AGR orders) at the end of your first 3-year tour. Also, once you are at the 100% tier, your children would also qualify for the Yellow Ribbon Program if the school they choose is part of the program.

I’m not sure what you mean by asking “Does the window of 36 months’ worth of benefits start over for my dependents once I reached another tier?” If you mean your children have been using their transferred benefits and have less than 36 months total left, do they start over with 36 months again, then the answer is no. You only initially had 36 months to split up between them; that is all they can get from you as you would at that point have nothing left to transfer.

However if you mean does the window of time they have to use their transferred benefits start over again, the answer is no again. Children have to use up their transferred benefits by age 26. Any unused benefits at that time are either lost or can be revoked by you and taken back. I hope this helps.

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