MSEJ September 2017 - Page 22

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The GI Bill is Forever

On August 16, 2017, President Trump signed the Harry W. Colmery Veterans Educational Assistance Act, or the Forever GI Bill, as it is popularly called. The bill, which had unanimous bipartisan support throughout the federal government, presents the largest update to Veteran education benefits since the Post-9/11 GI bill went into effect.

Here’s what it means for you and your family:

Educational benefits, like diamonds, are forever. Veterans who have or will have left active duty after January 1, 2013 will no longer have to worry about their benefits expiring. The 15-year expiration date is also removed for qualifying dependents, specifically dependents who qualify for the Fry scholarship.

Giving credit where credit’s due. Reservists who lost REAP benefits due to the sunset provision will receive credit from the Post-9/11 GI Bill program. Post 9/11 Purple Heart recipients will receive 100% of benefits. Purple Heart recipients as well as recipients of the Fry scholarship will qualify for the Yellow Ribbon program.

Getting a little help from our friends. Campuses across the country will expand their support network for military/Veteran students. Through the Veteran Success on Campus program, each campus will host a VA Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC) to support military members, Veterans, and their dependents. Campuses with twenty or more Veterans will now provide training for school certifying agents. Training hadn't been a requirement previously.

Payback is a reality. Students who were impacted by the closure of poorly run schools will receive their benefits back.

Want to learn more about the Forever GI Bill? Visit: http://www.benefits.va.gov/GIBILL/forevergibill.asp