Paycheck Chronicles

GI Bill Rates Going Up for Private and Foreign Schools in August

Defense officials are considering changing the rules under which troops may transfer Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to family members. Army photo

If you're going to a private or foreign school and using the Post-9/11 GI Bill you know that your tuition reimbursement is currently limited to $22,805.34 each year. 

Effective Aug. 1, 2018 this amount will go up to $23,671.94 for the 2018 - 2019 academic year. An academic year is defined by the VA as Aug.1 – Jul. 31.

While the Post-9/11 GI Bill will pay your full tuition & fees if you are going to a state school, the law was changed in 2011 to limit private schools to an annual maximum amount. This was done as a reaction to the large amount of money some private schools were getting from the VA for educating veterans. 

The Monthly Housing Allowance also changes on Aug. 1 based on the 2018 military BAH rates. If the BAH increased for your area on Jan. 1, you will see an increase in your September payment for classes taken in August. If the BAH decreased for your area, your Monthly Housing Allowance will not decrease unless you change schools or have more than a six-month break in training. See our Monthly Housing Allowance page for details.

If you're attending a private or foreign school and have tuition and fees higher than the academic year cap, you must make up any tuition reimbursement shortfall through personal funds or financial aid.

Schools in the US can choose to participate in the Yellow Ribbon program which can waive a portion of the difference in the tuition GI Bill recipients are charged and the amount covered by the Post-9/11 GI Bill. You should verify a school's participation in the Yellow Ribbon program before enrolling.

The amount of tuition & fees covered by the GI Bill is determined by your Post-9/11-GI Bill entitlement percentage which is based on the active duty service after Sep. 10, 2001.

For example, if you served 24 months active duty after Sep. 10, 2001 your GI Bill percentage is 80 percent. If you're going to a state school that has tuition of $10,000 a semester, the GI Bill would pay you 80 percent of the tuition and fees or $8,000. Likewise, if you are going to a private or foreign school and entitled to the same 80 percent rate you would get $18,937.55, or 80 percent of $23,671.94.

Veterans who have served more than 36 months active duty receive 100 percent of the entitlement percentage. Active duty time for the Post-9/11 GI Bill can also include Title 10 mobilizations for reservists & guard members.

The Post-9/11 GI Bill also pays a $1,000 annual books and supplies stipend.

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