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Veterans Affairs PROGRAM Eligibility



Montgomery G. I. Bill  (Chapter 30)

Establishes a program of education benefits for essentially two groups or categories of individuals based on their active duty service. Individuals entering military service on or after July 1, 1985, who have had their basic military pay reduced by $100 a month for the first 12 months of their service and received a discharge specifically listed as "HONORABLE" are eligible. Individuals eligible for the Old GI Bill (Chapter 34) as of December 31, 1989, who meet certain eligibility requirements and persons separated from active duty due to a service-connected disability or hardship discharge may also be eligible. Participants must have received their high school diploma or GED before or during the qualifying period. In most cases, eligibility expires 10 years after last discharge or release from active duty. Top

Veterans Vocational Rehabilitation Program  (Chapter 31)

A veteran of World War II or thereafter who has a service-connected disability which entitles him/her to DVA disability compensation and who is in need of vocational rehabilitation because the disability creates an unemployable handicap may be eligible for Chapter 31 benefits. Professional counselors from the Dept of Veterans Affairs will help you plan an individual program which includes the services and financial assistance needed to carry out the program.  Top

Post-Vietnam Era Veterans Education Program (VEAP)  (Chapter 32)

Provides benefits to individuals who entered active duty after December 31, 1976. Individuals made contributions from $25 to $100 monthly not to exceed $2,700. Contributions by the government are two to one. Example: $100 x 27 months = $2,700. Veteran is eligible for 27 months of benefits at $300 per month. Top

Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance  (Chapter 35)

Sons, daughters, spouse or surviving spouse of a veteran who dies on active duty, was released from active duty due to a service-connected disability, permanently and totally disabled, MIA, POW, or detained by a foreign government while on or in line of duty, may be eligible for benefits. Generally, the period of eligibility for a son or daughter is between the ages of 18 and 26 years. A spouse may use educational benefits during the 10 year period after eligibility is found. A surviving spouse may use these benefits during a 10 year period after the veteran's death, or 10 years after the DVA determines the veteran's death was caused by a service-connected disability, provided the surviving spouse does not remarry.  Top

Montgomery G. I. Bill Selected Reserve  (Chapter 1606)

Educational Assistance Program 

Individuals who have agreed to serve six years in the selected reserve, on or after July 1, 1985, reenlisted or extended an enlistment for a period of at least six years may be eligible. You must have completed the initial active duty for training (IADT) and meet the requirements to receive a high school diploma or equivalent certificate before you complete the IADT. 

Reserve Education Assistance Program (Chapter 1607)

REAP (Chapter 1607 of title 10, U.S. Code) is a new education program that provides up to 36 months of education benefits to members of the Selected Reserves, Individual Ready reserve (IRR), and National Guard, who are called or ordered to active service in response to a war or national emergency, as declared by the President or Congress. Eligibility will be determined by the Department of Defense (DOD) or Department of Homeland Security (DHS), as appropriate. Generally, a member of a Reserve component who serves on active duty on or after September, 11 2001 under title 10, U.S. Code, for at least 90 consecutive days under a contingency operation, is eligible for REAP. There is no specific timeframe to use REAP, however, your eligibility generally ends when you leave the Selected Reserves. National Guard members are eligible if their active service extends for 90 consecutive days or more and their service is:

    • authorized under section 502(f), title 32, U.S. Code,
    • authorized by the President or Secretary of Defense for a national emergency, and
    • supported by federal funds.

The educational assistance allowance payable under REAP is a percentage of the Montgomery G. I. Bill-Active Duty (MGIB) rate based on the number of the continuous days served on active duty. Persons released before 90 days due to an injury, illness, or disease incurred or aggravated in the line of duty receive the 40% rate. Current rates of payment can be found on our internet web site.  

    • Members who serve 90 days but less than 1 year will receive 40% of the MGIB 3 year rate.
    • Members who serve 1 year but less than 2 years will receive 60% of the MGIB 3 year rate.
    • Members who serve 2 or more continuous years will receive 80% of the MGIB 3 year rate.

Once you find a program approved for VA training, complete VA form 22-1990, Application for Education Benefits, and send it to the VA regional office that serves that state where you will train. Indicate on the form you are applying for REAP.  Top

Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program (VMSDEP)

The Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program (VMSDEP) provides education benefits to spouses and children of military service members killed, missing in action, taken prisoner, or who became at least 90 percent disabled as a result of military service in an armed conflict. Military service includes service in the United States Armed Forces, United States Armed Forces Reserves, the Virginia National Guard, or the Virginia National Guard Reserves. Armed conflict includes military operations against terrorism or as the result of a terrorist act, a peace-keeping mission, or any armed conflict after December 6, 1941. The purpose of this program is to provide undergraduate or other postsecondary education free of tuition and fees, institutional charges, general or college fees, and books and supplies at any state-supported college or university in Virginia. Benefits are available for up to four years.

To be eligible, children and spouses of qualifying military service members must meet the following requirements.

The child must be between ages 16 and 29; There are no age restrictions for spouses. The military service member must have been a Virginia citizen at the time he or she entered active duty or must have been a Virginia citizen for at least five years immediately prior to the date of the application for admission. In the case of a deceased military service member the veterans surviving spouse can meet the residency requirements if he or she lived in Virginia for at least five years prior to marrying the military service member or has been a citizen of Virginia for at least five years immediately prior to the date of application.

In most cases, eligibility will be determined using documentation from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. However, the veteran or surviving spouse may be asked to provide documentation verifying residency or the applicant's age or relationship. State income tax records, birth certificates, and/or marriage certificates are usually sufficient.

To continue receiving MSDEP benefits, qualifying enrolled students must provide a letter to the Virginia Department of Veterans Services stating their continued enrollment, the period of time attended, and the period of time for which they are requesting benefits.

How to apply

Persons interested in the Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program can apply directly through the Virginia Department of Veterans Services or the Tidewater Community College Office of Veterans Affairs. Applications and more details can be obtained from the Virginia Department of Veterans' Services web-site.Top

Virginia National Guard Tuition Assistance

Most members of the Virginia National Guard qualify for the Virginia National Guard Tuition Assistance Program. This program pays up to 50% of the tuition costs, not to exceed $250 per term (subject to change), at approved Virginia colleges or universities. Inquiries should be made to the Educational Offices, Virginia National Guard, Richmond. This program may be used in addition to educational benefits administered by the DVA. Top