GI Bill Transfer Rules – Transfer your GI Bill Benefits to Your Spouse or Children

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GI Bill Transfer Rules
There is good news for those of you out there who are eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill — you may be eligible to transfer your GI Bill to a spouse or child if you meet the minimum service requirements and agree to extend your military service obligation. There are certain limitations, and new rules passed…

There is good news for those of you out there who are eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill — you may be eligible to transfer your GI Bill to a spouse or child if you meet the minimum service requirements and agree to extend your military service obligation.

There are certain limitations, and new rules passed in July, 2018 (effective starting Jan 12, 2020) require members to transfer their GI bill no later than the end of their 16th year of service. Additionally, all members must be eligible to serve an additional four years in order to transfer their GI Bill benefits to a family member.

More information on GI Bill transfer eligibility is found below.

Update: Additional changes may be coming soon to transferred GI Bill benefits. Recent legislation would cut the Monthly Housing Allowance in half if the benefit is transferred to children (those who have already made the transfer will be grandfathered into the current system with a 100% housing allowance for children). Those who are thinking about transferring this benefit should do so ASAP to avoid reduced benefits for their children. Read more about the GI Bill transfer changes.

GI Bill Transfer Rules

Who Can Transfer GI Bill Benefits

The GI Bill benefits transfer policy is designed as a retention tool to entice mid-career service members to commit to additional military service. Because of this, eligibility rules target those members based on their service time and eligibility to serve an additional four-year service commitment.

New military rules, passed in 2018, require eligible members to transfer their GI Bill no later than the end of their 16th year of service. This change was originally scheduled to go into effect starting July 12, 2019. However, the military recently pushed this back to January 12, 2020, to give more time for military members to make the transfer. This applies to all current military members and their families.

Post-9/11 GI Bill Transfer Eligibility Rules: 

You can only transfer GI Bill benefits if you are eligible for the Post 9-11 GI Bill and you meet one of the following criteria:

  • Have at least 6 years of service on date of GI Bill transfer request, and you agree to serve 4 more years.
  • Are eligible to serve an additional 4 years of military service.
  • Have not yet completed your 16th year of military service (beginning July 12, 2019).

Note: Each branch can implement the transfer rules based on DoD policy. Please see your Human Resources or personnel office for more information or to start the transfer of your benefits. Your branch will be able to help you start the transfer process, ensure you are eligible to serve an additional 4 years and help you extend your service commitment.

Members Who Are No Longer Eligible to Transfer the GI Bill

Changes to the DoD GI Bill Transfer policy have removed the ability for some service members to transfer their GI Bill to family members. These changes have been made in keeping with the intent of the GI Bill transfer policy, which is to serve as a retention tool.

No Longer Eligible – Retirement Eligible Service Members:

The original law grandfathered in certain service members near retirement if they were not able to serve an additional 4-year service commitment. The original bill allowed those who

  • “Are retirement eligible from August 1, 2009 through August 1, 2012 to transfer their GI Bill, provided the member agreed to serve one more year of service starting from the date the GI Bill benefits are transferred.”

Why this provision was removed: This provision was included in the original law to give all current service members the opportunity to transfer their GI Bill to family members. This eligibility option has been removed because the GI Bill transfer benefit is a retention tool and all currently serving members will have had the option to transfer their benefits leading up to their retirement eligibility. This provision is no longer necessary. Retirement eligible members can still transfer GI Bill benefits through July 11, 2019, provided they are eligible to extend their service commitment an additional 4 years.

No Longer Eligible – 10+ Years of Service, but Ineligible to Extend 4 More Years:

The first version of the law allowed members to transfer their GI Bill if they

  • “Have at least 10 years service and cannot serve 4 more years because of policy or law, but you agree to serve as long as you are able by law or policy.”

Why this provision was removed: This provision was removed with the 2018 policy update. The new policy removed the ability for members to transfer benefits if they cannot extend 4 more years of service. This most frequently impacts those who run into High Year Tenure rules, Time in Grade, mandatory retirement laws, or inability to extend due to medical or administrative reasons. The provision was removed in keeping with the intention of the GI Bill transfer policy, which is to serve as a retention tool.

What to Do if the Transfer Changes Impact You

I’m a big believer in taking advantage of benefits as soon as you are able, just in case policies change. The Post-9/11 GI Bill transfer is a prime example of this.

If you are eligible to transfer the Post-9/11 GI Bill to your family members and are planning on staying in another four years, then don’t wait. This is especially true if you are at or near the 16-year mark (or have already surpassed the 16-year service mark). After July 12, 2019, you will no longer be able to transfer your benefits if you have surpassed 16 years of service.

To top it off, there has been a lot of talk of changing the benefits for dependents who receive the transferred GI Bill benefits. Under current law, children are eligible to receive the monthly housing allowance when they attend school using the GI Bill. There has been discussion of removing that benefit, as it was intended to help the veteran obtain housing after separating from the military; it was not originally intended to pay for housing for dependents. The proposal would eliminate the housing allowance for dependents.

If you are considering transferring the GI Bill to your family members, please do it now.

Remember, you choose how to allocate how your GI Bill benefits are disbursed among your family members and you can revoke or change the allocation at any time. You can even make changes after you separate or retire from the military. You can always change your mind regarding how you will distribute the months of benefits you transfer.

Who Can Receive Transferred GI Bill Benefits

GI Bill benefits can only be transferred to eligible spouses or children, who must be enrolled in the Defense Eligibility Enrollment Reporting System (DEERS).

Spouses.

  • Can receive benefits immediately (starting August 1, 2009).
  • Can use GI Bill benefits for up to 15 years after the service member separates from active duty.
  • May still use the benefits after a divorce if the military member agrees.
  • Spouses will not receive a monthly housing or book stipend while member is on active duty.

Children.

  • Can use benefits after the service member completes at least 10 years of service.
  • Can use the benefits while the service member remains on active duty or after the member separates.
  • Is eligible to receive a monthly housing or book stipend while member is on active duty.
  • May receive benefits after marriage.
  • Cannot use benefits unless they have a high school diploma or equivalent, or reach age 18.
  • Cannot receive benefits after age 26.

Other Important GI Bill Transfer Notes

This only applies to the Post-9/11 GI Bill. This does not apply to the Montgomery GI Bill program.

Transfers must be made while the member is still serving. Members are not eligible to transfer benefits once they have already retired or separated from the military.

What if You Are Unable to Complete 4 Years After You Transfer the GI Bill?

Members who transfer their benefits and extend 4 years, but are not able to complete 4 years of service, need to seek guidance from the VA. Policy allows the member to keep their benefits if they are separated due to a medical retirement, disability, or Force Shaping. However, there may be some instances in which the member may no longer be eligible to transfer the benefits if they are not able to complete 4 years of service. It is recommended each member consult with their Human Resources, Personnel office, or the VA for more information.

How Much of the GI Bill Benefits Can I Transfer?

The military member can transfer up to 36 months of GI Bill benefits and can allocate them among eligible recipients at any time (but only once per month). The service member may also cancel a family member’s use of the benefits at any time. The benefits belong to the service member, and the intent of the GI Bill transfer program is not to change that.

Transfers Are Revocable and Allocations Can be Changed at Any Time

Members are encouraged to transfer benefits if they are eligible to do so because they can always change their mind. The minimum transfer is one month of benefits.

For example, I am eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill. I have 36 months of benefits. I am married with two children. To begin with, I transferred 1 month of GI Bill benefits to each of my dependents, and still have 33 months to use for myself. I can change this allocation of benefits at any time.

GI Bill Transfer

To make changes, log into your MilConnect account and update the number of months you are transferring to each individual (up to the maximum allowed). This can be found under:

  • MilConnect Home –> Benefits –> Transfer of Education Benefits

Remember, there is no downside to transferring your benefits because you can always go back and change how the transferred benefits are allocated.

Changes Are Limited Once You Separate or Retire

You can add and remove dependents to your GI Bill benefits transfer while you are still serving in the military. However, you can no longer add dependents to your transfer once you have retired. You can only remove benefits or change the allocation between them. Keep this in mind before you separate or retire from the military.

The Purpose of the GI Bill Transfer Program

The goal of the GI Bill transfer program is to keep mid-career military members in uniform, which is why there are minimum service requirements and why the GI Bill transfer program requires military members to incur more service time.

This is part of the reason why the new law was passed which limits members to transferring their Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits no later than their 16th year of service. Once they reach 16 years of service, an additional 4 years will bring them to retirement eligibility and there is no longer a need to entice the members to continue their military service.

These GI Bill transfer rules will not apply military members who are eligible for the Post 9-11 GI Bill, but who have already separated or retired from active duty – all transfers must be made while the member is still in military service.

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About Ryan Guina

Ryan Guina is the founder and editor of The Military Wallet. He is a writer, small business owner, and entrepreneur. He served over 6 years on active duty in the USAF and is a current member of the IL Air National Guard.

Ryan started The Military Wallet in 2007 after separating from active duty military service and has been writing about financial, small business, and military benefits topics since then. He also writes about personal finance and investing at Cash Money Life.

Ryan uses Personal Capital to track and manage his finances. Personal Capital is a free software program that allows him to track his net worth, balance his investment portfolio, track his income and expenses, and much more. You can open a free Personal Capital account here.

Featured In: Ryan's writing has been featured in the following publications: Forbes, Military.com, US News & World Report, Yahoo Finance, Reserve & National Guard Magazine (print and online editions), Military Influencer Magazine, Cash Money Life, The Military Guide, USAA, Go Banking Rates, and many other publications.

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  1. Elizabeth says

    My Mom transferred her benefits to me before she retired and this is my final year of college. However, I will turn 26 in the middle of the school year. Will I still receive money for the remainder of school year or will it end the month after my birthday?

  2. Jake says

    Because of my medical training, I owe the Air Force 5 more years of residency and then 7 years of service as a physician. If I transfer my benefits to my daughter, does the 4-year commitment get added on to my total or do I complete it concurrently with my other commitments?

    Thanks for your help.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Jake, The service commitment is served concurrently. So you don’t have to worry about tacking on four additional years on top of your current commitment. Best wishes!

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Bleas, You can do this as long as you transfer the benefits before your divorce is final, or as long as your stepdaughter is still listed as a dependent in DEERS. You can no longer transfer benefits if a dependent is no longer listed in DEERS. Best wishes.

  3. Renata says

    I am no longer active duty. I got medical discharge after serving 3 years and also have received 100% disability. Can I transfer my GI Bill to my daughter?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Renata,

      So far as I am aware, you will not be able to transfer your GI Bill, since this can only be done while you are serving on active duty. However, there may be some different educational benefits available to disabled veterans with a 100% disability rating. I would contact the VA to see if there are any benefits available for your children.

      You may also want to check with your state – each state has different benefits for veterans, so this is something you will need to check on your own – just visit the state office of veterans affairs.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service.

  4. Karl says

    I am retired from the Military and have been placed in the retired reserve. If I am subject to call back, why can’t I still transfer my post 9/11 educational benefits to my children.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Karl, the military has always used the GI Bill transfer benefit as a retention tool. Service members have never been able to transfer the GI Bill benefit after they have retired. The sole purpose of the GI Bill transfer benefit is to entice servicemembers to extend their service commitment so the military can retain mid-career servicemembers.

  5. Fernando Alvarado says

    I am currently in the Army, prior service Navy. My LES says that I have 8 years in service. That means that I will need two more years to be eligible. I am being told that after I transfer my education benefits, I will owe the Army 3 years. How true is that?

  6. Angie noel says

    I have a question about after the benifits are transfered to my daughter from my exhusband for the 911 gi bill. He is retired for a few yeara now. She has been receiving them for 2 years and now he is trying to have the money sent to his bank account instead of hers… its a long story with him but just needing to know if he can do that… thanks

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Angie, Thank you for contacting me. This is a policy question that I can’t answer. I recommend contacting the VA for assistance. Best wishes to you and your family.

  7. Shane Bradley says

    Do I have to pay back the entitlements for the GI bill if I dont finish my additional 4 year commitment in the guard, or if all of those years aren’t “good years”?

  8. Nick says

    Question. I have 2.5 years until my contract ends. I am on the fence if I want to stay in for additional service or join the private sector at that time. I would like to transfer the benefit to my wife (currently I have 9 years in) and then transfer it to my child once we have one (planning to in the next year). My questions are:

    1. Can I transfer it to my child once they’re born and not incur additional service after that date? (My wife would have it for ~1 year and then I can transfer it to my child and only have to serve 3 more years, or would that reset the 4 year clock?)

    2. If I name my wife as the beneficiary, and I decide to get out at the end of my contract, would the benefit revert to me or would I lose it for not having served the entire 4 additional years?

    Thanks,
    Nick

  9. Michael says

    I have been retired for over a year. When I was active, I transferred my Post-911 GI Bill to my dependents. I am now wanting to go back to college to get my Master’s Degree. Is it possible for me to transfer some of my GI Bill back to myself so that I can use it for college?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Michael, yes, it is possible to transfer the GI Bill benefits to yourself. You can do this online. The VA customer service office can provide instructions. I wish you the best, and thank you for your service.

  10. Joann says

    My husband did 22 years in the Army… When he retired, he did not transfer his GI Bill over. Can my kids still use it to go to college? He was in Iraq for 2 years.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Joann,

      Unfortunately, the veteran must have transferred the GI Bill while still serving in the military. You can contact the VA customer service office with additional questions regarding the GI Bill.

      There may be other opportunities for scholarships or grants, so I encourage you to look into alternatives for paying for college.

      I wish you and your family the best.

  11. Erin says

    I learned the hard way about the changes to the GI Bill and transferring education benefits to spouses. It is a shame to gyp military spouses who sacrificed so much for their husband’s career. In 2012 when my husband was going through TAPS they were still notifying members to transfer their benefits just before retirement. However, the rules were being changed requiring 2 more years of service, which was not possible already being at 22 years as a MSgt in the AF. We learned of this change last year when I started my graduate degree and was denied his benefits. I have enjoyed the $20,000 price tag of my master’s on a teacher salary. Quite a shame that this is how we treat spouses, especially after 22 years of service to the military. It would have been different if he had not been incorrectly briefed and we had known.

  12. Brandon French says

    Hello,
    My father retired after 24 years in the Army at E09, and I am currently using his GI Bill benefits. I have ~2 months of eligibility left, and initially there was to be a full payment for my schooling and monthly stipend in the upcoming fall semester. I received an EOC stating that this full amount would be covered, but shortly after I received another stating that this had been shortened and my eligibility would only range from 08/26/19 – 09/28/19. I have read that the VA will honor the semesters benefits no matter the length of edibility left, as long as it does not exceed 40 months. My school is not participating in the Yellow Ribbon program at this time. My father passed away three years ago and can no longer help me with this matter. I have also sent in an appeal to this, but have not heard anything back. I was wondering if there is something to do or get done to mend these changes and receive full compensation.

  13. Elaine says

    Ryan,
    My husband retired from AD after almost 21 years of service ( Nov 2010) Our youngest son graduates in May of 2020 from high school. Is what I’m reading true that my husband can not transfer any of the GI to our youngest?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Elaine, Yes, that is correct. The GI Bill Transfer program was designed as a retention tool – members who transfer their benefits are required to serve an additional four years of military service. Because your husband has already retired, he would not be eligible to serve these additional four years of military service.

      I am not aware of any other methods for transferring the GI Bill benefit. I wish you and your family the best.

  14. Kelsey says

    My husband has been in the navy reserves since 2007, he wanted to Transfer 12 months of his eligible benefits to me. His transfer was approved but then when I applied for them, they denied it saying he doesn’t have 90 days worth of active duty. I don’t see how that’s possible with him completing two weeks of AT a year for the past 11 years? And also why would his transfer be approved at all. This doesn’t many sense to me and now I don’t know what to do for school.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Kelsey, I believe AT days are considered inactive training. The transfer may have been approved based on his years of service, not on his current eligibility. The good news is that the transfer has occurred, so it won’t have to be processed again if he completes additional active duty service time.

      I recommend contacting the VA customer service hotline for further details. They should be able to explain all of this in greater detail and help you understand your options.

      I wish you and your family the best!

  15. Jason says

    I have applied for post 911 GI bill benefits and have received an acceptance for 36 months. I was prior active duty for 11 years and got out in 2005. I have recently joined the National Guard and have applied to transfer my benefits to my children. My question is, on my acceptance letter, it states my benefits will expire 15 years after my last active duty date, which will be July 2020. I called the VA and they informed me I would have to get active duty Title 10 orders to “reset the clock”. I was also told by my command that once I transfer benefits, there will be no expiration date as long as I serve for an additional 4 years. The expiration date only applies to me using the benefits, not my children.

    Do I need to get some active duty days (Title 10 or Title 32 active guard) before July 2020 to reset the clock, or is my command correct in that they will not expire if transferred to my children?

  16. Juan says

    Hi

    I have transferred my GI Bill to my daughter and have been approved. Right now she is 6 years old. Is there a time that this benefit will expire after I retire? I will be eligible to retire in 2021, she will be almost 8 at the time. I guess my question is, will she be able to use the GI Bill after almost 10 years of my retirement? Thanks

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Juan, Thank you for contacting me. She will be able to use the benefits until she reaches age 26 (children are not eligible to use GI Bill benefits after the age of 26). I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  17. Ashten says

    Hello Ryan,

    My husband was medically discharged from the Army and is now 100% disabled. He has used some of his GI bill but it is not easy for him to go to school and likely will not be able to use the rest of his GI Bill. I do receive Chapter 35 but was wondering if it was possible to have him transfer his Post 9/11 GI Bill to me?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Ashten, So far as I am aware, it is only possible to transfer the GI Bill while the member is still serving in the military. There may be some form of benefits available to you as the spouse of a disabled veteran, but I am not 100% certain. I recommend contacting the VA for additional information.

      I wish you and your family the best.

  18. Jeremy B Collis says

    Hello. I am a reservist and I have already transferred my benefits to my kids. My question is that I may not be allowed to re-enlist but still need to serve two more years for my 4 year obligation. I have 21 years and can retire. The reason I may not be able to re-enlist is potentially because I am unable to deploy due to a heart condition, even though I informed my command several years ago about my condition, but now that a deployment is looming, and my end of contract is approaching, it doesn’t seem likely they will allow me to re-enlist. Would this mean my kids cannot use the GI Bill now? And should I transfer it back to myself before I get out? Thanks.

  19. Audra Rager says

    Hello! Can my husband transfer his GI Bill to my son, his stepson? He lives with us and is in DEERS as a dependent of my husband, but has not been adopted.

  20. Derek says

    I am a military officer that just hit the 6 year mark and I am interested in transferring to my child. Does the “agreement to serve 4 additional years” lock you into service? Does it mean you are signing up for 4 more years that you MUST serve, or does it mean you must serve 4 additional years to complete the transfer but you could leave sooner than the 4 years if you want.

    In other words, if I elect to transfer education benefits and then decide to separate in a year or two does the transfer then become void? I am on the fence right now about staying in for another tour, but I could start the 4 year clock now. I cannot commit to the whole 4 years until I find out if I promote and see the lay of the land for my career.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Derek, This is a great question. I believe you agree to serve an additional four years at the time of transfer. This is designed to be a retention tool, and the goal is to keep service members in the ranks.

      That said, I’m not 100% positive. You would need to speak with your unit career advisor, retention officer, or personnel/HR section for more information.

      If active duty is no longer for you, then you may also be able to transfer to the Guard or Reserves and transfer your GI Bill at that time.

      However, I am unsure if you would be able to transfer your GI Bill, serve two years on active duty, then transition to the Guard or Reserves.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  21. brandon says

    I tried to transfer my GI Bill to my spouse and was told no because I don’t have time left to fulfill since it has now became a tool to get Soldiers to reenlist which is not how it should be. but with that it say “. This is especially true if you are at or near the 16-year mark (or have already surpassed the 16-year service mark). After July 12, 2019, you will no longer be able to transfer your benefits if you have surpassed 16 years of service.’ So I should be able to transfer still until that date correct?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Brandon,

      Through July 11, 2019, servicemembers can transfer their GI Benefits if they have more than 16 years of service, provided they are eligible to extend for at least 4 years and agree to the service commitment.

      After that date, members can only transfer the GI Bill benefits if they have more than 6 years or less than 16 years of service.

      Each base has a retention office or education office that can help members understand if they are eligible to transfer benefits or not. The VA customer service line may also be able to assist servicemembers.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service.

  22. Dre says

    Hello , I retired and received 100% disability from the Navy Feb-2019 and I am looking to transfer my post 9-11 to my daughter. I couldn’t transfer before but now I am 100 percent I need help. what is the steps I need to do?

  23. Kenneth Cardwell says

    I served Active Duty during 911 and retired after 22 years 2003 and was told I could not transfer to my children as this was set up for retention! Why wasn’t everyone who was active duty grandfathered and could do whatever they wanted with the bill? I asked my Senator and Congress about this and they promised to get back with me. I knew that was smoke being blown up my rear! I served when you had to wait for a letter and now active duty military have internet everywhere, cell phones and I lose my GI bill because I only had 15 years to use it and could not transfer to my children. I served during the Gulf war 1990, so my mental state was not into college again. This is a stinking rotten example of how veterans are treated. I understand why so many commit suicide! I contacted VFW, DAV and others asking why haven’t they done something and not one response worth toliet paper!

  24. Palacio says

    Hello,

    My wife is a veteran and has used all of her post 9/11 GI Bill. I am eligible to transfer my remaining GI Bill benefit since I have 10+ years in service, and have already re-enlisted for five years. Is my wife able to receive my GI Bill transfer, or is she ineligible since she has already used her own GI Bill? I’ve looked everywhere online for info on this, but have not seen this situation anywhere. Thanks,

  25. C says

    If my husband is seperated from the National Guard due to forced Medical Retirement due to disabilities is he still able to transfer his GI benefits?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello C,

      He would no longer be able to transfer his benefits after he has separated from the military. The only time it is possible to transfer GI Bill benefits is when the military member is still serving.

      The option to transfer GI Bill transfer benefits to a family member was created as a retention tool to entice members to remain on active duty longer. Servicemembers are generally required to serve an additional four years of service after transferring benefits. However, this service requirement may be waived if the member has already transferred their benefits, but was not able to complete his or her duties for reasons outside of his or her control, such as a medical separation or involuntary separation.

      I hope this is helpful and I wish you and your family the best.

  26. Bridget says

    Currently in the middle of divorce from a service member. If member is active duty, and is able to transfer GI Bill benefits to spouse, as part of the divorce settlement. Will former spouse receive the housing allowance and the book stipend while member is active duty? Retired?

  27. Amber says

    My husband transferred his education benefits to me (spouse) before separation. Now that he is. I cannot find out if the benefits transferred or not. He served six years of the Army National Guard with a deployment. There is no record of it anywhere and I have nursing school coming up. What do we need to do?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Amber, Transferring the GI Bill is a retention tool. The member must serve 6 years before he/she is eligible to transfer benefits. But in doing so, they incur an additional 4-year service commitment. If the member has separated, then they would not have fulfilled the service obligation required to transfer the benefits.

      Based on the information provided, I am not sure the benefits will be available. That said, I recommend contacting the VA for verification.

      I wish you both the best.

  28. Joc says

    I am an Academy grad and will hit my 8 year mark next month. My understanding is that my 5-year payback for the Academy does not count towards the accrual of GI Bill Benefits. However, am I correct in thinking that 3 years beyond my initial 5-year commitment makes me eligible for 100% GI Bill Benefits?

    Secondly, as it pertains to transferring these benefits. I have my spouse and son in DEERS, and want to transfer my benefits to them. However, we have a baby on the way due in October and want to transfer benefits to the baby as well. If I transfer my benefits now to my wife and son prior to the baby being born, and being enrolled in DEERS, will I be able to allocated benefits to the baby once they are eventually enrolled in DEERS?

  29. Susie Curtis says

    Hello Ryan,
    Thank you for all of the valuable information. My husband generously transferred me 24 months of his Post 911 GI bill. I have been working hard at completely a dual BSN/MSN program and graduate my BSN in August and MSN in December. He has 4 months and 4 days remaining in his name.
    He is retiring after 30 years this December. The plan was for him to return to school after I graduate and am employed FT. He has a BS in Healthcare Management and has found an online MBA program he’d like to start next month. His online program BAH is considerably less than my FT in-class program in San Francisco. We have two questions:
    1. If he were to transfer me an additional 4 months, would his first-semester tuition be paid with him only having 4 days left? The SF BAH could offset a lot more tuition than his online out of state BAH.

    2. We have read that there are situations where the service member can extend their GI Bill an additional 12 months. Is he still eligible for this given he transferred me 2 years? If not, do you know of any other programs that might help?
    I am incredibly grateful for his GI bill and have worked tirelessly at being a good steward of this benefit. I feel badly that he now might not be able to extend his benefits to cover his education and am grateful for any information that might help. Thanks again for the guidance and thank you to all the service members that so generously share their benefits with their families.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Susie,

      Thank you for contacting me.

      Regarding his MBA program – if he starts next month, I do not believe he would not be able to receive the BAH through the GI Bill while he is currently receiving housing or BAH for his military service. My understanding is that he would only be able to receive BAH after he leaves military service.

      1. If he transfers the remaining 4 months to you, you would be able to attend school for the 4 months and receive the San Franciso BAH. The remaining 4 days would only offer him a prorated amount of tuition. So it wouldn’t cover the full semester. But it should help defray the cost, if only by a small amount.

      2. Other Tuition Assistance Programs. There may be programs. The GI Bill can be extended in certain circumstances, but I’m not sure the entire process. I would contact the VA, or seek out an expert who specializes in the GI Bill program (it can get complicated in certain circumstances).

      He could also look into the Vocational Rehabilitation Program, also called VocRehab, if he receives a VA disability service rating. This program is designed to help veterans with a VA disability rating receive training to help them transition into a new career after leaving the military. This can be a very helpful program and is worth looking into if he anticipates having a disability rating.

      Please don’t feel badly that your husband shared his benefits with you. This was a gift, and by all means, you appear to be grateful and humble. In many ways, it will work out better. You are going to be able to hit the job market right away and begin earning a very strong income at the time he is making his transition. This allows you to maximize your income while he is starting in the civilian world. That planning will go a long way toward your family’s financial future. I would say, job well done!

      I understand my answers haven’t solved the equation so to speak. You will still have some decisions to make. But it sounds like the two of you have done a lot of planning and will be able to work through this.

      I wish you both the best!

  30. Gary Pitcher says

    Hello, I am at 17 years as a E-6 and still can meet the new HYT of 22 years in order to get the 4 year commitment. My issue is that I am currently on an extension until November. Wouldn’t I be allowed to re-enlist in order to meet that commitment and transfer my benefits before the July deadline?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Gary, I would speak with your retention office for a more specific answer. They should be able to give you this answer and help you with the process. I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  31. Kathleen c Ruiz says

    My son n law is active duty Army. He transferred his GI Bill to my granddaughter who is away at college in student housing. She uses her monthly stipend for this and her car and insurance, orthdonist and cell phone, none of which my daughter or sil pay. The school recently refunded some money due to the Gi monies coming late and the school used her pell and scholarship monies first. Normally they would refund those monies after gi bill was applied. Anyway my daughte wants my granddaughter to give them this refund stating its her stepfathers benefits and he has a right to it. So they took it and they are not saving it for her. They are planning to use it on their bills and an upcoming vacation. i confirmed this and i do not think this is right. Does she have recourse or does she have to live under the threat of have the gi bill taken away? My granddaughter is very responsible, a hard worker. I know because i supported her mother and her for 5 years before she married.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Kathleen, This is a family issue and should be handled internally. If the GI Bill or the school refunded the money to the parents, there is likely a policy supporting the reason for the refund, and to whom they sent the refund. This is a question your granddaughter can take up with the VA or the school for clarification.

      Regarding the GI Bill – The GI Bill benefit belongs to the service member. The service member has the ability to transfer it to or from a dependent at any time once the original designation has been made. In other words, should the service member wish to do so, he could transfer the full amount of the benefits back to himself, to his spouse, or to another qualified dependent. I am not aware of any VA rule that states the benefit must be left in place once it has been transferred.

      This is something I recommend your granddaughter speak to her parents about so they have a clear understanding of expectations. This will clarify any future situations of a similar nature, set expectations going forward, and help to clear the air. This is also a great learning experience and will help her learn to deal with adult situations in a meaningful and productive manner.

      Best wishes to you and everyone involved.

  32. I. Quinones says

    My son dropped from my DEERS account when he turned 21, as he was not a full time student. He is now 22 years old and enrolling in college full time. He is also in the Marine Corps (Reserves).

    Can I add him back to my DEERS account before his 23rd birthday under the student/education status ONLY and transfer my benefits to him?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello I. Quinones, This is a question I would ask the VA or your base education office. I’m not sure if you can transfer benefits to an individual once they join the military or are eligible for the GI Bill benefits under their own service. They should be able to provide you with a better answer.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  33. Jeff says

    Hi Ryan,

    Thank you for all the great info on your website. One question on this. I transferred my GI bill benefits to my children back in 2014 and my 4 year mark was Jan 18. I was medically discharged as service connected at 100% in Dec 17 (two weeks short of 4 years). Am I able to do a waiver since it was a service connected medical discharge? I appreciate any info.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Jeff, Thank you for contacting me. I believe there are waivers for medical discharges, but I don’t know the full process. Your best bet is to contact the VA or your former branch of service’s human resources or personnel office. They should be able to assist you with this.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  34. CPT D says

    I started drawing on my Post 9/11 in Spring 2018 for one class one semester. I have have not been back to get my Masters since. I now have a baby on the way and would like to transfer my Post 9/11 benefit. He will be born in July, is this possible with no required end date to use the benefit too?

    • Ryan Guina says

      CPT D, you can transfer the GI Bill benefit as long as you are able to extend your commitment date by 4 years. There will, however, be a deadline for your child to use the GI Bill. They cannot use the GI Bill after age 26.

  35. Marc says

    Hi,
    I have the same question as Keith. I am recently married and have ~19 years of service. According to the new rules, I have to transfer my Post 911 GI bill benefits before 12JUL2019. If I transfer all my benefits to my wife today because I have no children, can I re-allocate my benefits to any children if/when they are born?

  36. Peggy Faulkner says

    My grandchild is 19 years old and lives with us. She wants to attend college but her dad won’t let her have any of his GI bill. He is active duty now. Isn’t he responsible for educating his child? She has tried to get a grant to go to school but he won’t give his tax information to the college. Any help would be appreciated.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Peggy, No, the military member is not required to transfer GI Bill benefits, and even if he does, the right to use the benefits can be changed or rescinded at any time. Parents are responsible for educating their children through high school, or up to a certain age. They are also responsible for teaching them to be resourceful and hard working. However, I have yet to see a law that requires parents to pay for their children’s college education.

      As for college grants, I am not an expert on this topic. I recommend she work closely with the school admissions office to determine which options are available to her. Since she is an adult and is no longer living with her father, his information may not be required to obtain loans or grants.

      Best wishes.

  37. Rod says

    Would my child receive BAH even though she lives with me while attending college? I’m still active duty, therefore, I’m getting my own BAH.

    Thanks,
    -Rod

  38. Keith says

    If I transfer all my benefits to my wife today because I have no children, can I re-allocate my benefits to any children once they are born? Does it incur more service time (i.e. 4 years after the most recent transfer)?

  39. Ian says

    I just started the final class of my Masters program and am going to transfer the remainder of my benefits to my son. Do I need to wait until I finish the class and graduate in May or can I do it now? Thank you.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Ian,

      I always recommend individuals transfer benefits as soon as they are able. This way they get the transfer in the books and can begin working on their service obligation. I don’t see any benefit to waiting.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  40. M says

    If benefits were transferred to a dependent child and that child subsequently joins active duty, are the transferred benefits still available to the newly active duty Service Member? What about when he meets eligibility criteria for his own Post-9/11 GI Bill benefit?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello M, The servicemember or veteran can transfer benefits within family members at their discretion. For example, if a servicemember who is the parent transfers benefits to their child, they can later transfer the benefits back to themselves or to another eligible family member.

      I believe there is a lifetime cap on the amount of GI Bill benefits one is eligible to use, so if the child uses GI Bill benefits from a parent, then later becomes eligible for GI Bill benefits through their own service, they will only be able to use a certain amount of the benefits.

      These are questions you should verify with the VA to ensure all transfers are handled properly.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  41. Mark Dube says

    I just need to know, when one who is eligible to receive the GI Bill, can they transfer said bill to an ex-spouse even though the former service member has chosen the bill for themselves, and do both parties then lose out on this benefit?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Mark, The service member can only transfer the benefit to a family member who is registered in the DEERS program as a dependent. Once they initiate the transfer, they can later change the benefit amount to any portion of the benefit, from 0 months, to the full number or remaining months.

      If the member transfers the benefit to a spouse, and they later divorced, then the member may be able to transfer the benefits back to themselves, provided there was no ruling against this in the divorce decree or divorce agreement.

      For further clarification, I recommend speaking with your base retention office, education and training office, or the respective office that handles GI Bill transfers in your branch of service. They will be able to assist you.

      If you have already separated from the military, you should instead contact the VA customer service desk.

      I hope this is helpful. I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  42. Keith says

    So my daughter lives with her mom who is active duty and obviously has her in DEERS. I am a air national guard member, who is eligible to transfer post 9/11 GI bill. However my wife is my dependent in DEERS and my daughter is with her mom in DEERS. I am not sure how to transfer the GI Bill to my daughter. If I go ahead and make the transfer to my wife’s name since she is already my dependent maybe that will help and later on is there a way to give it to my daughter?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Keith, This is a great question, and one I don’t have the answer to. It may be possible to have your daughter in DEERS under both your profile and her mother’s for purposes of transferring the GI Bill. But I’m not sure how it works in this case.

      I recommend speaking with your base retention office, which is who usually handles the GI Bill transfer process. They should be able to point you in the right direction. I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  43. Michael Bennett says

    Non of my children were interest in using my Post 911. I’m wondering, could I transfer my school benefits to a Daughter In-Law or is it bound to the definition of Family…i.e. blood, adoption, under the age of 26 etc.?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Michael, You can only transfer your GI Bill to your direct dependent. You can speak with your education or retention office for more specifics. I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  44. Jose Diola says

    I transferred my benefits got approved but retired earlier than intended. Is there a waiver I can try to run to keep my transferred eligibility to my dependents that was approved since I stayed for more than 24 years?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Jose, I recommend contacting your base education office or retention office for specific details. They should be able to help you based on your specific situation. I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  45. Ceilidhe Brown says

    My father was 100% disabled and I received chapter 35 benefits from him. Later on in life I married is was eliblige for benefits through my spouse. But the VA send my 45 months were up. How is this when it was my first time using the benefits through my spouse?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Ceilidhe, I believe the VA sets a lifetime limit on benefits each person can use. However, I am not familiar with your specific situation, so I recommend contacting the VA for verification. I wish you the best!

  46. Kenneth Woodard says

    Hello, I have a student whose dad served in the marines from ’78 to ’86 in Vietnam. He never used any benefits to go to college. Now, his son is going to be going to college next year. Are there any transferrable college scholarship benefits that his son can use.

    Thanks for the advice.

    Kenneth

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Kenneth, Thank you for contacting me. The US withdrew from Vietnam in the early to mid-’70s, so the dates may be off. I only bring this up because war-time service may open the door to additional benefits or potential scholarship opportunities. So the son may want to verify this.

      As for military education benefits, they aren’t transferable once a servicemember leaves the military. So his father wouldn’t be able to transfer any benefits to his son. The Montgomery GI Bill also expires after 10 years of leaving the military, so his father’s benefits are likely expired as well.

      As for scholarships, they are on a case by case basis, and he would need to do further research. I would start by searching for scholarships for military dependents, children of veterans, and similar terms. There may also be scholarship opportunities for children of disabled veterans.

      He can also contact the Department of Veterans Affairs or his local county VA office for more information. They may be able to point him in the right direction.

  47. Brad Bergemann says

    It says the GI Bill can be used by dependents up until they are 26 years old. But I was told I can’t transfer it to my son because he is older than 23? Why is there this discrepancy? Why not let them use as much as they can until they reach 26.

  48. Juan Garcia says

    I transferred my GI benefits to my wife at the time back in 2011, and in 2015 she used it for 2 classes. Since then we were divorced as of 2017. Am I able to transfer those benefits to my kids instead, now that she is no longer my spouse? Also, if I were to get remarried to a different to someone else, would I be able to transfer those benefits to my new spouse? I am still active duty in the USAF, 13/20yrs. Thanks

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Juan, Yes, you should be able to transfer those benefits away from your former wife, provided there was no statement in the divorce agreement to the contrary.

      Regarding transferring benefits to your children, yes, I believe you should be able to. Visit your retention office or base education and training office, and they should be able to give more specific information or help you with the transfer.

      As for transferring benefits to a future spouse – I believe that will depend on when you get married. If you get married while still in the service, then you would likely be able to transfer the benefits. I do not believe you would be allowed to do so after you separate or retire.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  49. Jeremy Garrett says

    Do I have to reenlist for another four years if I want to transfer my benefits again to my kids five years later?

  50. John Furley says

    Can the 4 year commitment be completed while in an IMA status? I have transferred the benefit while in the ANG but have an opportunity to go to an IMA spot with the CAP, which is a points only position.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello John, Thank you for your question. Yes, I believe so. So far as I am aware, you only need to be serving in an active duty, Guard, or Reserve status for the duration of the commitment.

      That said, I believe you need to earn a good year for the service to count against your service commitment. I don’t believe service in the Individual Ready Reserve qualifies if you don’t meet the requirements for a good year.

      You should be able to confirm this with your retention office, education and training office, or personnel office.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  51. Jon Twitchell says

    I currently hold a service commitment of 5 years but would like to transfer my GI benefits to my daughter. I am going to transfer regardless but I would like to take advantage of an SRB that was just released for my career field (I am also in a combat zone tax free). I understand that I have the option to reenlist when I transfer benefits. Does that option still apply to me even with a 5 year commitment remaining? I have served 11 years on active duty, and as an E6 I would not have to worry about running into HYT. I have no problem carrying a larger service commitment as I have plans to stay for 20.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Jon, Thank you for your question. I believe you can run the commitment concurrently to any other service commitments you have. I don’t believe you would be required to extend for another 9 years (I’m not sure it is even possible to do that). I would speak with your retention office, or whichever office handles the GI Bill transfer in your branch of the military. They should be able to help you set it up and make sure the paperwork and extension are handled correctly.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  52. Eugene Cramer says

    I am now officially divorced from my spouse. Can I still transfer by GI Bill benefits to her even though she is no longer a dependent?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Eugene, According to the VA, “Family members must be enrolled in the Defense Eligibility Enrollment Reporting System (DEERS) and be eligible for benefits at the time of transfer to receive transferred benefits.” So if your spouse is no longer listed in DEERS as a dependent, then you would not be able to transfer GI Bill benefits to her.

  53. Brandon says

    I have a somewhat of a different situation: I have an approved retirement date of 1 July 19. My 20 year mark will be 1 Dec 18. I extended for 7 month 3 years and 5 months ago in order transfer my GI Bill to my spouse.

    “Once they reach 16 years of service, an additional 4 years will bring them to retirement eligibility and there is no longer a need to entice the members to continue their military service.”

    Based on the current situation and the logic from this statement, can they just waive those months and allow me to retire now? It seems that it would be more cost effective for them to cut me loose, and it would be in line with their current retention-based situation and thinking.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Brandon, Once you sign the extension paperwork, you have a legal contract and the commitment is on the books. Can this be waived? I’m not sure. You would need to ask your retention office or personnel office. They would need to look into it and see if it would be possible.

      I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  54. Brenda J Spano says

    Can my husband transfer his GI Bill benefits to our daughter? He served during desert Storm and left the military in 1994. He never used them.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Brenda, Unfortunately, he cannot. The GI Bill transfer is only available as a retention tool – it can only be transferred to family members in exchange for agreeing to serve four or more additional years in the military. He would be ineligible to do this since he is no longer serving. I wish you and your family the best.

      • David Morin says

        This is not accurate. My father served in Desert Storm and transferred his benefits to my younger sister. Please have him contact the VA.

      • Ryan Guina says

        Hello David, I believe you may be basing your answer on a different qualification. Serving in Desert Storm is not the primary qualifier in this instance. The member in question left the military in 1994. They would have only been eligible for the Montgomery GI Bill, which cannot be transferred to another family member, and expires 10 years after leaving military service. In this specific case, the member’s GI Bill benefits cannot be transferred to anyone and would have expired in 2004.

        I am not aware of a method this individual would be able to transfer benefits. If you are aware of a different method, please leave a reference in this thread or respond via email and I will update the article accordingly so other veterans and family members can have this information.

  55. jenn says

    My ex has about 13yrs in, switched to national guard 2yrs ago, plans on leaving the NG next year. He only used a little of his GI BILL. Our daughter is enrolled in DEERS, she is now 10. I left him almost 6yrs ago due to him abusing me and our daughter. After leaving him, he barely had anything to do with our daughter although he was good about paying support without involving the courts for a good amount of years. Once he decided he wanted to sign his rights away, he has barely been giving any money, so I filed for Child Support. Our court date is next month.

    My question is: Can he transfer the rest of his GI BILL to her before he signs his rights away? I’m getting remarried in a year, and my fiance will be adopting her after that. If he can, does anyone know if I can ask the child support judge to order him to do it?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Jenn, The GI Bill Transfer requires the member to extend his or her military service obligation for an additional 4 years. I am not aware of a judge being authorized to order a military member to extend his or her military service obligation, since military service is voluntary.

      This is something you would need to take up with the service member, or ask a lawyer about. I wish you and your family the best.

  56. Shar Jordan says

    I was wondering if I can take back my GI Bill that was given to my son prior to being medically retired in 2014 and transfer it to my daughter.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Shar, Thank you for your question. If you have transferred your Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to both children before your retirement date, then you should be able to adjust the amounts transferred at any time after your retirement. However, if you transferred the full amount to your son before your retirement, and none to your daughter, it may not be possible to change the allocation. You should be able to make the transfer online. You will need to contact the VA if you are unable to access the online portal, or if you have additional questions. I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  57. Adam says

    I am active duty. At 6 yrs of service I transferred my G.I. bill to my dependents (as long as I serve 4 additional years). I am now considering changing to the reserves or to a different branch of service when I get to 8 years. Will this affect my transfer of G.I. bill? I will still serve the required additional 4 yrs, just not all with my current branch of service. Thanks

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Adam, Thank you for your question. This is a great question, and I’m not 100% certain. The GI Bill transfer is a retention tool, so the odds are low. You generally have to reenlist or sign a contract that takes you through to the end of your 4-year service commitment that you incurred when you transferred the benefits to your dependents. It may be possible to transfer to the Guard or Reserves, but I do not know how this would impact the benefits you transferred, or if you would incur an additional service commitment on top of what you originally agreed to.

      The best thing to do is contact your education office, retention office, or the office in charge of handling the GI Bill benefits transfer. One of them should be able to answer the question and point you in the right direction. I wish you the best, and thank you for your service!

  58. Eric says

    I transferred my Post 9/11 benefits a few years ago to my family members. Am I no longer allowed to use those benefits if I choose to take a class or two? or did I just give up all of my months of benefits away

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Eric, You are able to use the benefits. You can log into your account and transfer benefits to and from yourself or any of the members you transferred benefits to at any time. You can transfer as much or as little benefits you wish, as long as it is in one month increments. I hope this is helpful.

  59. Kevin says

    I am in the USAR. I completed the request to transfer my Post 911 GI Bill to my children in 2014. It was not approved until 2015. My approval letter states that I have an obligation until 2019. I was already retirement eligible at that point. I was told at the time by a supposed career counselor that if I was eligible to retire I could without issue. The question is can I transfer to the Retired Reserve or IRR and continue my obligation or do I have to continue as a TPU or IMA? Unfortunately, no one seems to know the correct answer and I have heard several answers. What is correct?

  60. Alex says

    I transferred 1 year of benefits to my now ex-wife in 2010, who is also a veteran. At the time, she had used up her 4 years of post-9/11 GI bill, so I transferred 1 year of the benefit to her so that she could finish her graduate education. Well come to find out, one can only use a maximum of 4 years of GI bill benefits regardless of which source it came from. So eventually I revoked the benefit since she couldn’t use it anyways. I completed my 4 years of obligation in 2014 and I’m still on active duty. I have 3 children, so at the time I didn’t think about transferring any of my benefit to them as they were real little but now I’m thinking it might be a good idea before I retire. My question is this: If I transfer some months to them (currently they have zero months), would I have to stay for another 4 years? Or is the requirement only one 4-year term? I’m coming up on 19 years if that makes any difference. I have called the VA and other sources and no one seems to know the answer. Thank you in advance for any and all information you can provide.

  61. Beth says

    Dear Ryan,
    My husband was injured in country. He returned to the US injured and was placed on MedHold. He was held for nearly two years on med hold. He then Med boarded out of the Navy. Due to to the types of injuries my husband sustained, unfortunately he was not in the frame of mind to understand or comply with the TEB requirements prior to Disability Exit.
    That brings me to now…we have our daughter, a junior in High School, ready to utilize the benefits her father secured for her by nearly losing his life for her and our country, and now we find out that the benefits are not there.
    As you state, he would have had to transfer them prior to exiting the Navy. Unfortunate, since this was not done.
    Who can we speak to about this? When I called education, I was told that I would need to speak to my congressman. Do you have an resources or a point of contact that could help me with this? I am the caregiver for my disabled husband and now I have to try to find money for college after I thought all this time that college was secured….please help!

  62. John says

    Hello Ryan,

    I have a semi-unique situation that I’m not finding addressed and wanted to get your thoughts. I had over 5 years on active duty, then transferred to the USAR, From 2009 to 2012, I was on one year at a time active duty orders and on 1 April 2010, my Post 9/11 GI Bill transfer was approved. My active duty orders covered me until 4 January 2012, but then funding for orders dried up and I was also retirement eligible (22 good years), so I got out then. At the time I was never told about service obligations and didn’t have a lot of options as the orders ended. When I recently printed a transfer letter, it states an “obligation end date” of 31 March 2012. My son (transferred to him) has several years until college, but I want to better understand my situation. Thanks.

  63. Josephine says

    My husband transferred his GI bill months to our children and I before he retired. 12 months each for the 3 of us. Our daughter went to college on and off for a year, she is soon to be 23 yrs. I heard theres some sort of rule about her using hers by that age also, i think? And our son is attending a trade school, but sometimes the classes are only for 2 or 3 weeks out of a month, he’s been there for 6 months but not consistent classes that takes up a whole month.
    How do we find out how much time is left on each of their 12 months that he allacoated for them? And If i don’t use mine can he decrease my months left and can he give it to them in stead?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Josephine, Thank you for contacting me. You can contact the VA to determine how much of each benefit is left over. And yes, your husband should be able to transfer the benefit between any of the three of you. The VA can help him do this, or he can do it online.

  64. DeAngela says

    Hello Ryan,

    My mom transferred me a year worth of benefits for school. I just got approved to use them except all the allowances are being deposited into my mother’s bank account, and she refuses to let me switch the account information on file and she is not giving me the money each month. Is this ‘legal’ if the benefits were transferred to me or does she still have all the right to do that?

    A response would greatly be appreciative.

    Thank you

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello DeAngela, Thank you for contacting me. To be honest, I don’t have an answer here. I’m not sure how the law is written and I’m not sure if there is a clause that states the benefit must go to the student receiving the GI Bill benefits, or if it is something that needs to be worked out between the family members. I would contact the VA for an official response. However, I will also let you know that the person who earned the GI Bill benefit can change the transferred amount at any time. So before raising any serious complaints, it’s important to know that the benefit can also be transferred back to the person who earned it, or transferred to another individual. I would try to work this out with your mother. And at the end of the day, a year of free college is till incredibly valuable, even if there is no cash stipend that goes with it. I wish you the best.

  65. Cory Perkins says

    My wife is a veteran and has used her Post 9-11 GI bill benefits to finish her bachelors degree. I have served 10 years and just re-enlisted for an additional 6, Can I transfer my wife some of MY benefits so she can go through her masters program?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Cory, Thank you for contacting me. I am not aware of any reason why you wouldn’t be able to transfer your benefits to your wife. But I would double-check with your education and training office, retention office, or the agency that handles GI Bill transfers. Best of luck, and thank you for your service!

  66. Rob Davis says

    I retired in 2009, before doing so I signed over my 36 months to my son. He only used 20 months (Culinary School). My daughter is getting ready to go to college in 2017. I am curious if there is a way we can transfer the remaining 16 months to her.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Rob, Thank you for contacting me. If you had previously transferred some of the benefit to her, then yes, you should be able to change the allocation to transfer the remaining benefit to her. If you have never transferred any of the benefit to her, I am not sure if you will be able to do so now. You can no longer add dependents to transfer your benefits once you have separated or retired from active duty. You will need to contact the VA to verify. I wish you the best and thank you for your service!

  67. TGeller says

    My husband transferred all 36 months of 9/11 to me and our children and have been used. He just retired. Can he use Montgomery or any other benefits for him now if he decides to take some classes?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello TGelleer, Thank you for contacting me. No, that is not allowed. Montgomery GI Bill benefits are gone once they have been converted to the Post-9/11 GI Bill. In this case, he used his GI Bill to provide education for his dependents. There may be other education opportunities, but they would fall under a different program. Here is an article which may be helpful – how to pay for school after using your GI Bill benefits. I hope this points you in the right direction!

  68. Nancy says

    My husband wants to transfer 18 months of his post 9-11 GI to me for school. My question is about the enlistment commitment of 4 years. His actual commitment will be fulfilled in about 1.5 years, can he finish his commitment out in the reserves? He’s currently an active duty naval physician. He’s not sure he wants to commit to 4 more years active duty. What happens to people who do not finish the commitment? Is it a simple overpay charged?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Nancy, Thank you for contacting me. The GI Bill transfer is a retention tool, meaning it was created to entice servicemembers to extend their commitment by another 4 years of service. Servicemembers can transfer their benefit while in the Guard or Reserves, however, I am unaware if they can transfer the benefit while on active duty and finish their commitment in the Guard or Reserves.

      In other words, he can transfer the GI Bill to you and do 4 more years of active duty service to complete the obligation. The same would apply if he was already in the Reserves. He could do the transfer, extended 4 years, and complete his Reserve obligation. I am unaware if he can transfer the benefit, complete 1.5 more years of active duty service, then finish the remaining time in the Reserves. He should contact his education, personnel, or retention office for further guidance.

      I hope this is helpful and I wish you both the best in figuring out the best way to transfer these benefits!

  69. David Lee says

    Ryan,

    Update on my situation above. I was able to get in touch with the DOD side that disapproved my son for his GI Bill benefits that I transferred to him. Luckily I live near the Naval Base where the Naval Personnel Command is located. After talking with the GI Bill folks I was forwarded to another office that takes care of medical type situations(Limdu, Medically down/retirement orders etc..) to see if they had any medical information on me in the system. Unfortunately since I had chosen to do a regular retirement instead of going through the medical retirement process there was no info in the system on me for medical. Fortunately though I had brought my copy of my medical record that showed all the medical issues I was going through and where I was no longer able to maintain my flight status and where I would not screen for sea duty. These folks are amazingly helpful. Even though I had elected to do a regular retirement, with all that medical information I was able to provide them to show that I was no longer able to transfer back to SEA Duty, it looks like they are going to waive the additional 24 months I had left to complete the additional 4 years. So it looks like my Son and Daughter will be able to use the benefits now.

    For anyone that reads this and may be in the same situation I am in. Always and I mean Always go the medical route if given the option. Not only would this GI BILL been and issue but your Disability through the VA is expedited doing a medical retirement.
    I have been rated finally at 100% and will receive my first check in Sept. 6 months of the VA process is not bad and could be worse but if I had done the Medical Retirement route it would have been allot faster.

    Thanks for all your help Ryan.

    David

  70. David says

    Hello Ryan,

    You may have answered my question above. I transferred my Post 9/11 to my son and daughter Feb 2014 and had 4 years left in the Navy. I had totally planned on completing the 4 years. I was not due to transfer back to Sea Duty until Dec 15. With the medical issues I had accrued I could not return back to a ship or the special programs duty station I had came from. So I made the decision that after 22 years of service I would go ahead and retire.
    Like Ethan above I had transferred the benefits and received the transfer completion verification letter. My son applied for his benefits and a letter was received from the VA saying they could not give him the benefit. I called the VA and was told that DOD had denied the benefit since I did not complete the full 4 years. My question would be is there anything in the instruction that if medically a service member can not complete the 4 years and has successfully transferred the benefit in the past that a dependent would still receive the benefit?

    Thanks in advance.

  71. Tarra says

    My son received 18 months of education benefits transferred from his father, who is an active duty Marine. Recently his benefit letter came in the mail describing his benefits. At this point he has 1 day and 0 months remaining, but the letter stated that he would be receiving a housing stipend of $1500 a month and a book stipend of $666 a month. The check for books has already arrived in the mail. My question is, did the government make a mistake and send that check?? I do not want him to cash it and have to repay it. His father is stationed in Bosnia and I can’t get a hold of him. Thank you for you help!!!

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Tarra, Thank you for contacting me. I don’t have a good answer for you. I would contact the VA and inquire about the benefits and ask them if they can review the benefit and whether or not this is correct.

  72. Monica says

    My husband served 4 years active duty post 9/11. He went enlisted as an army reservist a few months after his 4 years of service. He is still enlisted as a reservist. Would he be able to transfer his GI Bill to me?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Monica, Thank you for contacting me. I he is eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill and he is still serving, then he should be able to transfer the Post-9/11 GI Bill benefit, provided he is willing to extend his contract to continue serving for at least 4 more years. I hope this is helpful.

  73. Mariah says

    Hi! My dad has recently transferred me his GI bill benefits to me and I was wondering if once its transferred to me is he allowed to stop or take it back?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Mariah, Thank you for contacting me. Yes, your father is able to transfer some, all, or none of the GI Bill to you. The decision to transfer the benefit is revocable, which means it can be withdrawn. I do not know if it can be withdrawn in the middle of a school term, but it would be worth looking into. You could contact the VA to learn more about how this benefit could change. Here is the VA’s contact number: 1-800-827-1000. I wish you the best with your studies!

  74. Teresa says

    My husband retired in 98 after 20 years of service in the Navy. I found out we do not have education benefits for our daughter but he is 30% disabled. Are there benefits ther to use?
    Is the Mongomery GI bill the only option?

    Thank you

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Teresa, Thank you for contacting me. The GI Bill cannot be transferred and expires 10 years after leaving the military, so that wouldn’t be an option. There may be benefits available for children of disabled veterans, but in many situations, they are case specific, or the benefits may be available from an an agency other than the VA. For example, many states have certain provisions for children of disabled veterans, and many colleges may offer scholarships or grants. I would start by contacting a trained benefits counselor to help understand which benefits may be available. You might also try your state Veterans Affairs office or website. I hope this points you in the right direction.

  75. Briana says

    Hello,

    If I am prior Army and have already used my 36 months of 9/11 gi bill can I use my current husbands gi Bill who is an active duty sailor? He would like to transfer his gi Bill to me but we are wondering can I use his now after having used all of mine.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Briana, Thank you for contacting me. I am not aware of any prohibitions that would prevent you from using your husband’s GI Bill. But I would contact the VA to be certain. Best of luck, and thank you for your service!

  76. Aric says

    If I transfer my benefits, will my service commitment be concurrent or consecutive with regards to any current service commitment? (For example, I currently owe six years.)

    Also, my wife and I are planning on having more children, can I transfer my education benefits to any future children without incurring additional service commitment if I have previously transferred education benefits to my current children?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Aric, Great questions. Unfortunately, I’m not sure of the specific answers. You should contact your education or retention office for further information. They can help you with the process. Best of luck!

  77. Ethan says

    Medically retired 80% from the Army in 2014, with 15 years active duty. Before my retirement date, I transferred my Post 9/11 G.I. Bill to my 15 year old daughter. I received confirmation of the transfer, and it seems all is well. Just checking to see if this is still legit. Thanks.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Ethan, Thank you for contacting me. I don’t know how the process works if you transfer your GI Bill benefits before leaving the military, but don’t complete the required years of service. I believe the transfer is still considered to be complete under your circumstances. But I would contact the VA to verify everything is as it should be.

  78. Brent Tyler Kazee says

    My father is a veteran and had mentioned the GI bill to me. Before i had a chance to talk to him about it he passed away. He was shot and killed by his father. Now i need to see if i can still get the GI bill he was talking about to go to school.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Hello Brent, I’m sorry to hear about your loss. unfortunately, the GI Bill can only be transferred if it is the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and the military member is still in the service. It is not otherwise transferable. I don’t believe you will be eligible to use your father’s GI Bill under these circumstances.

  79. Greg says

    I plan to transfer the GI Bill to my wife at year 6, and serve the additional 4 years. We currently have no kids. If I have a child later on (say year 8 for example), can I transfer the GI Bill benefits to him/her without incurring any additional service commitment (meaning could I separate at 10 years instead of 12)?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Greg, To be honest, I’m not sure how it works in this instance. I recommend asking your education office or career retention counselor. They should be able to give you a reference in writing. Best of luck, and thank you for your service!

  80. Chuck says

    I transferred my 9/11 GI Bill benefits to my kids before I retired on 2007. Twin girls and gave each 18 months of benefit. They’re high school sophomores this year and looks like one of them will not attend college.

    Is it possible to transfer the unused benefit from one girl to the other or is my only option to revoke the benefit and use it myself? Thanks.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Chuck, Thank you for contacting me. Yes, I believe you can transfer the benefits between your children. Contact the VA for more information on how to do this. Best of luck, and thank you for your service!

  81. Scott says

    Hello Ryan, I Retired ARNG 2006 and Iraq Veteran with the post 911 certificate in hand for myself only. In 2008 post 911 G.I. bill was extended to family member. Do you if any changes where made? I have been trying to get hold of the VA and my eBenefits page is giving a hard time getting in. Thank-You.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Scott, the ability to transfer Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to family members is a retention tool, and requires the servicemember to sign on for additional years of service before he or she can transfer the benefits. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to transfer your Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits if you have already retired.

  82. M. Gray says

    My husband retired national guard in 2012. I dont believe he transfered the bill to our children prior to retiring though. He says the question never came up? What is the process to get this fixed? Otherwise, this benefit will go to waste because he doesnt plan on using it.

  83. H. Morgan says

    My son’s father spent 20+ years in the Air Force and still has $ left under his Montgomery GI Bill; I am trying to figure out if he is eligible to transfer it to our son? His father retired in Aug 2009 and our son is going into his 3rd year of college. Can you lead me in the right direction of what entity of the VA I should be contacting to find out if it is possible?

    • Ryan Guina says

      H. Morgan, Thank you for contacting me. Unfortunately, it is not possible to transfer the Montgomery GI Bill to a family member. the only GI Bill that can be transferred is the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and it can only be transferred while the member is still serving. Sorry to be the bearer or bad news.

  84. Joseph says

    I have over 10 years in. Do I have to tranfer my GI BILL to my kids while on active duty if I will go into the National Guard once I ETS from active duty? In addition I will have a GS job, if that counts for anything.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Joseph, Thank you for contacting me. If you transfer your GI Bill while on active duty, you will incur an additional service commitment – so you would be required to remain on active duty. You can transfer the GI Bill after you join the Guard. You will still incur a service commitment, but it will be in the Guard, not for active duty. Since you will likely be serving that amount of time anyway, you won’t have to add much, if anything to your Guard contract. Just be sure to do the transfer as soon as you can. That way you won’t have to extend your initial Guard contract. Hope that helps. Best of luck, and thanks for your service!

  85. Amy says

    Hello,
    My daughters biological father served for 20 years and retired in aug 2013.
    My daughter is going to graduate June 2016. Can she use his GI bill for college?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Amy, The GI Bill can be transferred, but this benefit is used as a retention tool. The benefit must be done while the servicemember is still on active duty, or in the Guard or Reserves. If the servicemember didn’t transfer his benefits while he was still in the military, then he can no longer do so.

  86. Jasmine McGraw says

    My dad did 20 years in the navy, I was wondering since I’ve gotten married am I still eligible to use my military benefits or am I cut off now. I’m 21 years old.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Jasmine, Thank you for contacting me. Typically the military benefits eligibility for dependent children are cut off when the child marries. There may be some exceptions, such as if your father transferred GI Bill benefits to you before he retired and before you were married. Otherwise, it is unlikely you are eligible for benefits. Thanks, and best wishes to you and your family!

  87. Shelby Jones says

    I am engaged to a Sailor. my dad transferred his GI Bill to Me. I Start college August 26th . Will I lose the BAH if we get Married? we won’t get married till February.
    thank you all!

    • Ryan Guina says

      Here is what I read about the BAH eligibility:

      “Active duty servicemembers and spouses of active duty servicemembers using transferred entitlement cannot receive BAH, however, Veterans, their spouses and dependents can receive BAH.”

      I take this to mean that you can receive BAH benefits until you become married to an active duty service member, at which point the BAH would stop. However, I recommend contacting the VA to verify.

  88. Jacob says

    My fiance’s has been using the G.I bill that her mom transferred to her. her mom just retired. My question is can she keep using the G.I bill if we get married since its already been transferred to her. I am also in the military.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Jacob, If the GI Bill was transferred to her in full, then being married shouldn’t prohibit her from using the benefit. She should be able to continue using it. If you have specific questions, I recommend contacting the VA so they can look into her account and give you answers tailored to her specific situation.

      • Dee says

        My Daughter had recently gotten a transfer from her father of benefits but what surprised us was it says she is entitled to a stipend for books and housing etc.. When asked for account number for direct deposit her father demanded his account be used .. Is this how it’s works our daughter goes to school but the stipend is the service members .. I know it’s revocable and it is the service members GI Bill .. But how does this help her with books and such if he receives the stipend and is in full control .. Confused on my end .. Please help .

  89. Octavia says

    I have always wanted to transfer my Montgomery Bill over to my daughter for when it came time for her collage needs. MY estimated ETS date is in 2016 and I found out very recently she is graduating a year early from high school. How do I do this? If I have to enlist a few more years to do so then I will her collage education is very important to me. I look forward to your response.

    Thank you.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Octavia, Currently only the Post-9/11 GI Bill is eligible to be transferred, but you may be eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill, depending on your service dates. Each branch has different rules regarding GI Bill transfers, so you will need to contact your education office for specific information.

  90. Lauren says

    What happens when you are medically retired due to a disability and are unable to either go to school due to that disability or re-enlist? This is the case with my husband, he was temporarily retired in 2008 and that temporary retirement became permanent during 2012. Are there options for him to transfer his GI Bill benefits at this time?

  91. Jeff Lagasse says

    I was active duty army from 1992-2003. Can i transfer my GI Bill to my son. He was born while i was on active duty therefore enrolled in DEERS.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Jeff, Based on the information I have, GI bill transfers are only available as a retention tool and can only be transferred when the military members is still serving. Service members generally have to reenlist for a certain amount of time to be eligible to transfer benefits. I don’t believe it is possible to transfer your benefits after you have separated from the service. It may be possible to join the Guard or Reserves and transfer your benefits through your service commitment with the Reserve Corps.

      You may also wish to contact the VA for more information about your options. Best of luck, and thanks for your service.

  92. Jennifer says

    My husband is getting ready to transfer more of his GI Bill to me so I can finish my degree. What happens to the months he transfers me that I do not use/won’t need? Does he have to transfer them back to himself, cancel what I have left so they go back to him, or what? Thanks!

  93. amber lynch says

    Need to update information or atleast put everything on here it says can’t receive after 26. That is false because you can’t receive the day you are 23.unless already enrolled. Sucks for people that just found it can be transferred and my 23rd birthday was in Nov.

    • Ryan Guina says

      Johnny, There is a time limit to use the GI Bill, and in most cases it expires within 10 years of separating from the service. I recommend contacting the VA if you believe you have benefits which you may still be eligible for. The VA can look up your specific case and give you the relevant information you need.

      Thanks for your service.

  94. Sara says

    Hello,
    My husband only has 6 months left of benefits from his active duty Gi bill. Does he get more money for his reserve gi bill? How does that work?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Sara, Active Duty GI Bill and Reserve GI Bill are very different benefits. It also depends on whether he is using the Montgomery GI Bill, or the Post-9/11 GI Bill. If he is using the Montgomery GI Bill, he may be able to switch to the Post-9/11 GI Bill to gain several more months of benefits. My recommendation is to have him call a GI Bill representative at the VA so they can access his records and give him specific information to his situation.

  95. Joseph Hals says

    I completed 20 years of service on April 31st of 1998. I originally entered the service on July 31 of 1974, My child is i her second year of college. Can I transfer my GI Bill to her? V/R Joseph Hals

    • Ryan Guina says

      Joseph, Most likely not, as you need to be active duty to be able to transfer your GI Bill. Additionally, if you fall under the Montgomery GI Bill, you would need to use your benefit within 10 years of separation from the service. You may contact the VA if you need more information or clarification. Best of luck, and thanks for your service!

  96. Shannon Nabors says

    Hi, Is the Post 9/11 GI Bill the only one you can transfer? My husband has been in Army Reserve for 20 years but no active duty so would he even be eligible for this?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Shannon, Based on the information I have, the only GI Bill benefits that can be transferred are the Post-9-11 GI Bill benefits. If your husband has spent time on Active Duty since the 9-11 attacks, he may qualify for the Post-9-11 GI Bill. I recommend he look into it by contacting his education or personnel department. Best of luck!

  97. Jose S says

    I have been in the service for 2 years and I was wondering if there was any way of transferring my GI bill to my wife for school before I hit 6 years in the service.

  98. Amy Hoggard says

    I wanted to find out if I can use the GI BIll that my husband already transferred to me on a certificate program…mainly a paramedic certification, or is it strictly for asscociates degrees.

  99. Jim M says

    28 OCT 2010

    I want to know if I can transfer my 9/11 GI Bill to a biological daughter that is now 19 and a sophomore in college, was never enrolled in DEERS and was adopted by her step-father years ago and no longer my dependent?

    I’m willing to transfer the benefit since I have no other children or spouse who could possibly take advantage of this.

    BACKGROUND

    I recently received an e-mail from my ex who I haven’t heard from but once in the last 15 years that she expects me to transfer my 9/11 GI Bill benefits to my biological daughter.

    I can’t get HRC’s DEERS office to respond to several vm that I’ve left the past couple of weeks.

    According to the 9/11 GI Bill website she has to be in DEERS and a dependent.

    I’m not sure if I can enroll her now at this point since she was never enrolled in DEERS and my ex left when she was 2 years old [1993] and had her adopted by her new husband when she was 4 or 5 and therefore she’s no longer my dependent.

    If anyone can point me to a specific section of the Bill/Law that covers this unique instance that would be great or a POC; e-mail address or phone number so that I can discuss in person vs. autoresponse websites which do nothing except send me back to the GI Bill website video.

    • Ryan says

      Jim, I’m not the final authority – I recommend contacting the VA for more information. But it seems to me like it just isn’t possible if she isn’t your dependent in DEERS and has been adopted. I recommend contacting the VA and getting the rule in writing so you can forward it to your ex – that way she can’t reasonably place the blame on you.

      • Jim says

        Thanks Ryan – the VA told me to contact DEERS first – which has been a black hole so far. I’ll go online and find the nearest DEERS facility and show up to hopefully work w/someone face-to-face.

        I appreciate your reply.

    • RANDOLPH JONES says

      I cant understand the fact that your exwife left you when your daughter was 2 years old just like what I went threw same thing to but my wife left me to be with my bestfriend AND DANG DO I MISS MY BESTFRIEND oh yeah and she also left taking my dog has qnyone seen my at all? Dang I sure miss my dog lol but your exwife had her new husband adopted your daughter and then after 15 years later is asking you to transfer your 9-11 GI bill over to your daughter now sounds like your exwife is after your 9-11 GI BILL sounds like to me SIR just be careful if thats whats really going on ok.you can can search online with your military branch you served in to find out alot more info on what all your needing info on your needing info about your 9-11 GI BILL info and I HOPE THIS WILL HELP AT ALL SIR AND THANK YOU FOR YOUR GREAT SERVICES SERVING IN THE MILITARY TO BE UPHOLDING OUR FREEDOM AND LIBERTY

  100. Ryan says

    Quentin, Unfortunately, not under the current system. You would still need to be on active duty and commit to extending your service time. Thanks for your service, and best of luck!

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