New Legislation for the Post 9/11 GI Bill - Effective Fall 2011 (August 1, 2011)
Tiered Eligibility for Active Duty
Effective March 1, 2011, the VA has established tiered eligibility for active duty members. Your percentage of eligibility is calculated based on your active duty time served after September 11, 2001. Your percentage of eligibility will determine your percentage of payment based on the annual cap for tuition and fees (see below).
Example: If your percentage of eligibility is 50%, you will be eligible for 50% of the annual cap of $17,500. Each term, the VA will send a 50% payment for the amount of tuition and fees certified. You will be responsible for the remaining cost.
If your percentage of eligibility is less than 100%, and you are Active Duty, you MUST submit a new Certificate of Eligibility each term in order to be certified. Because your service time is constantly accruing, your percentage of eligibility would increase and be re-evaluated prior to the start date of each term.
Annual Cap of $17,500.00
The VA has established for BOTH active duty and veterans an annual cap of $17,500.00 for tuition and fees combined. Once this cap has been reached:
- If you are a veteran eligible for Yellow Ribbon, the Yellow Ribbon program would cover the remainder of your cost. (The Law Program has a Yellow Ribbon cap of $5,000.00 per year; all other programs are capped at $12,000.00 per year. If you exceed the Yellow Ribbon cap for the year, you will be responsible for the remaining cost.)
- If you are not eligible for Yellow Ribbon, you will be responsible to cover the remaining cost.
- Active duty service members are still not eligible for the Yellow Ribbon program.
Reporting Net Tuition and Fees
Regent will certify the NET cost of your Tuition and Fees (minus discounts, scholarships, Tuition Assistance, 3rd party funds, and other aid). This will be very helpful to not exhaust your cap as quickly.
- Title IV funds will NOT be deducted (e.g. Pell grants, federal loans).
- Private loans will NOT be deducted.
- Any aid that is not specifically designated for Tuition/Fees will NOT be deducted. (Example: A scholarship that could be used for books/housing/etc. will not be deducted.)
Example: Your total tuition for the semester costs $6,000.00 and your total fees cost $400.00. You have received a tuition scholarship for $2,000.00 and a Pell grant for $1,200.00. You are also using Tuition Assistance for $1,500.00. When certifying your enrollment with the VA for this term, Regent would report your tuition as $2,500.00 and your fees as $400.00.
Please note that because your Tuition and Fees will need to be reported after aid has come in, the balance on your account will remain longer than it has in the past. Please do not be alarmed by this. The DVA funds are coming to Regent.
*Your stipend payment will not be affected by the delay in tuition reporting.*
University policy restricts institutional financial aid (scholarships/grants) from paying more than 100% of tuition when combined with certain non-Regent awards. Should your GI benefit cover 100% of your tuition costs, your GI Benefit will take precedent over any institutional scholarships or grants for which you might otherwise qualify. Examples of this are:
- All non-Law Yellow Ribbon eligible students
- Undergrad students who are receiving a 100% active duty benefit
Should your status for 100% eligibility change, or you reach your annual $17,500 cap, you would then be able to utilize your institutional scholarship or grant.
Under certain circumstances, your GI Benefit may be used in conjunction with other institutional awards for which you may qualify. Examples of this are:
- All veterans or active duty service members whose percentage of eligibility is less than 100% (Regent awards will be reduced to the combined maximum of 100% tuition)
- Graduate and doctoral students who are 100% active duty
The purpose for this policy is to best utilize the $17,500 cap and have the minimum impact on the semester costs for students as a result of the new GI benefit tuition caps.
E-benefits is a new tool available to you through the VA website. Please visit www.ebenefits.va.gov to enroll. You will be able to access information such as your percentage of eligibility, how much of the cap you have used for the current year, etc. You will be able to print off documents like award letters, Certificates of Eligibility, and DD-214's.
Who To Contact
The Department of Veterans Affairs
If you have questions about being certified under the Post 9/11 GI Bill, please contact:
VA Certifying Official
Please refer to the Financial Aid Office to apply for scholarships and discounts.
Please refer to the Business Office for information about using Tuition Assistance.