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With a Four-year Contract and SLRP, How Much Post 9/11 GI Bill Benefits Will I Get?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: I have the student loan repayment program and it will finish paying after my third year of service. I have a four-year contract and want to know how much of the GI Bill I will be eligible for if I do not reenlist.

A: It won’t be much. As a matter-of-fact, you will be at the 60% tier, if you have a full 12-months of service after your three-year Student Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) obligation is paid off. However, if you have less than a full year, then you will only get 50%.

Why so little with four years of service? Because you can’t start accruing Post 9/11 GI Bill eligibility time until your three-year SLRP obligation is paid off. By law, you can’t use the same time period for both programs.

So, if you choose to use your Post 9/11 GI Bill, then you would have 36 months of entitlements at 50%, meaning half of your tuition and fees would be paid for if you attend a public school. If you choose to attend a private one, then the VA would pay up to $8,500 per year (50% of $17,000). Regardless of which school type you choose, you would also get 50% of both the book stipend and housing allowance.

Hopefully, you already had your four-year degree before you came into the military and you won’t need to use your GI Bill.

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