Military Discharge Types
Post 9/11 GI Bill eligibility partly depends on the type of discharge you receive. There are five types of discharge:
Post 9/11 GI Bill Eligibility Rules
Am I eligible for Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits if I have been discharged under honorable conditions?
The short answer: No
The long answer:
According to the VA, the Post-9/11 GI Bill provides financial support for education and housing to individuals discharged with a service-connected disability 30 days after they’ve been released from the military. However, you must have received an honorable discharge to be eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits.
There are different types of military discharge, (“dishonorable”, “honorable”, “discharged under honorable conditions”, etc.) but Post 9/11 GI Bill eligibility is reserved for those who received an honorable discharge. A general discharge under honorable conditions is not enough to get you access to Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits.
You must have been honorably discharged for Post 9/11 GI Bill eligibility.
The Department of Veterans Affairs is now accepting and processing applications for the Post-9/11 GI Bill. You should complete and submit the application form available online and will receive a letter explaining VA’s decision regarding your eligibility for the program.
The application form requires that individuals currently eligible for benefits under the Montgomery GI BILL-Active Duty (MGIB-AD), Montgomery GI Bill-Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR) or the Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP) make an irrevocable election from their existing program to the Post-9/11 GI Bill.
Payments will be processed August 1, 2009.
Military.com offers advice on whether you should apply for the Post 9/11 GI Bill right away or weigh your options before going through the application process. While the Post 9/11 GI Bill provides better benefits for most military personnel that qualify, the Montgomery GI Bill is still a more profitable option under certain conditions. Keith Wilson, the Director of Education Service for the Veterans Benefits Administration, quotes:
This needs to factor in, not just what VA pays, but also the impact on any other educational assistance the person receives. For example, if the student attends school in one of the many states that offers veterans free tuition or receives another form of state or campus aid, will switching to the Post-9/11 benefit change that?
Students that are currently receiving financial benefits from a different GI Bill may also apply for the Post 9/11 GI Bill for the remaining months of their benefits to be transferred to the new bill.