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24/7
2 February 2007, 15:20
I'm about to get boned, are there any VA smart guys in the crowd?

I retired from AD on 11-30-2000, I thought that my VA education benefits expired 10 years from that date. Thought I had 3 (+) years to knock out a Masters program. When I received my Cert of Eligibility it read that my benefits must be used by 04-16-07, I thought that somebody screwed up so I requested a review. I just got off the phone with them hoping to find out what my status was - they informed me that my 10 year clock started ticking the day my break in service began...I was out about 3 years, which explains the date that I was given.

I'm about to request a waiver, extending my delimiting date to the 10 year mark from my retirement date.

Anybody have any advice before I put this thing in the mail?

rgrdrew
2 February 2007, 15:38
Interesting question, as I'm about to file again for my bennies. I got out in 97, understood I was good to use the funds until Aug 07. Has something changed?

Drew

snaquebite
2 February 2007, 15:40
I believe It's always been that way, though not well publicized. Your break time as a civilian counts toward those 10 years. Not sure if there's any way around it.

I do seem to remember that there was something about if you did not use it at all during the break, the 10 years did not start until final separation.

24/7
2 February 2007, 16:50
I believe It's always been that way, though not well publicized. Your break time as a civilian counts toward those 10 years. Not sure if there's any way around it.

It makes since...I haven't used any of my education benefits since I got out, got it all while I was AD and that was TA. It never hurts to ask for a waiver, all they can tell me is NO.

s1chmoe
2 February 2007, 19:34
i think if you go back active duty for a specified length of time the clock restarts, look into it on military.com forums. there is also some bill out to try and either extend the 10 yrs limit, or eliminate it altogether

24/7
3 February 2007, 20:10
i think if you go back active duty for a specified length of time the clock restarts, look into it on military.com forums. there is also some bill out to try and either extend the 10 yrs limit, or eliminate it altogether


Hey, I'd vote for that one...

magician
3 February 2007, 20:15
If you are disabled and drawing compensation at a certain rate from the VA, you qualify for generous benefits. I forget the disability rate. Some of the other guys who are more conversant can address it.

EasyRunGent's
3 February 2007, 20:20
The ten year thing recently hit me. Even though the tenth year was when I was activated and deployed to OIF. The VA still counted that year even though there was no way I could have attended school.

Doc P
3 February 2007, 21:00
Near the bottom of this page is says, "...usually have 10 years...":http://www.gibill.va.gov/pamphlets/CH30/CH30_Pamphlet_General.htm

This doesn't answer your question, but I guess spells out a non-guarantee of 10 years. That being said, I am using the GI Bill to finish school now. I have spoken with VA agents numerous times to get a "balance" of monies, but that does not exist per se. Once you separate your 10 year clock starts. Also, once training starts the 3 years (academic), which really equals 4 years (going only Spring/Fall) begins, as does the deductions from your total GI Bill amount.

I separated in 2000, and every time I verify my benefits online, at the bottom of the page reads, "Additional Educational Benefits Information:
Benefits are not payable after: ***-**-2010". If you are setup with GI Bill, log onto the W.A.V.E. site and see what yours says.

WAVE verification: https://www.gibill.va.gov/wave/

EasyRunGent's
3 February 2007, 21:06
If any of you live in Tx. You can be covered by the Hazelwood act, which will pick up where your Montgomery leaves off. The institution must be TEA approved and your course of study must be either a degree or certificate program. Great program though, with no time limit and a hefty sum. It is worth asking your financial aid officer about.

s1chmoe
4 February 2007, 01:30
Question
What if I am beyond my original 10-year period of eligibility when called up?

Answer
If you were eligible for the MGIB Active Duty program, and serve at least 90 continuous days on active duty at a later date, you become eligible again for the MGIB Active Duty Program. You receive a new ten-year period of eligibility from the end of your call-up period for MGIB - Active Duty (Chapter 30) and VEAP (Chapter 32) participants. If you served less than 90 continuous days and are discharged or released for a service connected disability, for a non-service connected medical condition which preexisted the later active duty service, for hardship, or because of a reduction in force for the convenience of the government, you will still get a new ten-year period of eligibility. We may need evidence of active service such as copies of orders or DD Form 214. You would not receive an extension of your eligibility if you were called up under title 32 (state authority) orders for operational purposes.

Finger
4 February 2007, 10:03
Magician, I think the VA rehab education you speak of is up to 30%. When I retired (86) it was 10%. It payed full tuition, books, lab fees, pens, pencils, everything.

EasyRunGent's
4 February 2007, 11:44
Question
What if I am beyond my original 10-year period of eligibility when called up?

Answer
If you were eligible for the MGIB Active Duty program, and serve at least 90 continuous days on active duty at a later date, you become eligible again for the MGIB Active Duty Program. You receive a new ten-year period of eligibility from the end of your call-up period for MGIB - Active Duty (Chapter 30) and VEAP (Chapter 32) participants. If you served less than 90 continuous days and are discharged or released for a service connected disability, for a non-service connected medical condition which preexisted the later active duty service, for hardship, or because of a reduction in force for the convenience of the government, you will still get a new ten-year period of eligibility. We may need evidence of active service such as copies of orders or DD Form 214. You would not receive an extension of your eligibility if you were called up under title 32 (state authority) orders for operational purposes.


s1chmoe,
Maybe you can help me out,
I recently applied for education benefits (under Chapter 30); I was turned down because my discharge date from my first active duty contract was 11years previous. I included a copy of my OIF activation orders and the member 4 page of my most recent DD214. I received a declined letter stating that my benefits had expired in 2005, ten years from my active duty EAS.

If you site where I could research this I would be very greatful. I would like to include this information in my appeal letter.

Mav
4 February 2007, 11:55
If you are disabled and drawing compensation at a certain rate from the VA, you qualify for generous benefits. I forget the disability rate. Some of the other guys who are more conversant can address it.

Vocational Rehab is for entry level stuff, only, unfortunately, and in the end, pays less than someone with a more than entry level position, already, when compared to GI Bill..

I just got back from my briefing this past week... they will not pay for a Master's Degree or anything above basic entry level/journeyman level training. :(

Looon
4 February 2007, 11:59
If you are disabled and drawing compensation at a certain rate from the VA, you qualify for generous benefits. I forget the disability rate. Some of the other guys who are more conversant can address it.I believe you have to at least be 20% Service Connected. I believe you have 12 yrs from the time of separation to use it.

If you ever get re evaluated and your SC percentage is increased, the time frame to use your benefits re starts at the time of the % change.

Ive been out since 91 and recently started voc rehab. The reason for me to be able to do this is because of my latest increase from a couple of yrs ago.

Looon
4 February 2007, 12:01
Vocational Rehab is for entry level stuff, only, unfortunately, and in the end, pays less than someone with a more than entry level position, already, when compared to GI Bill..

I just got back from my briefing this past week... they will not pay for a Master's Degree or anything above basic entry level/journeyman level training. :(Correct. A lot of it depends on the nature of your dissability.

Mav
4 February 2007, 12:06
Also.. if you use Voc Rehab, and you are in a job that currently inflames your injuries, they will REQUIRE that you quit your job.. which is where that subsidy for living comes into play...

Obviously, if you need them to help you get into a different job because you're injured, then you are in a job that you cannot do. It makes sense... Voc Rehab is a great program... it just didn't work for me, personally. And every situation is different.

Also, if you are eligible for Voc Rehab, I'd recommend going to to briefing just to have the information so you can make a truly informed decision. Additionally, just because you're eligible, doesn't mean you're entitled. ;)

s1chmoe
4 February 2007, 16:51
try the va website, there is a lot of info there, also, i hate the forums at military.com, but in the forums, there is a place that discusses education and gi bill i think. i found that snippet i posted on google and i'm not sure how to get back to it. hope this helps, if you have any disability issues, check with your healthcare physician, perhaps he can write a letter for you stating that you were in no condition to go to school (if you were somehow medically disabled...) its worth a shot, persistence is key i think...

dvpj
5 February 2007, 13:41
The VocRehab program got me to where I'm at today.
Find the local rep. Many colleges and universities know who they are.
I called the college business office, and hit payola! He was there that day!

I'm not in an entry level position, and the program was able to provide everything I needed to excell at what I wanted to do.

The VocRehab rep is equiped to determine what if any eligiblity and requiremments you need. They can also point you in some alternate directions, if needed.

EasyRunGent's
5 February 2007, 15:27
Unfortunately the Va rep at TAMU is giving the ten year answer to everything. They see EAS as EAS....when you tell them you went back in and EAS'ed again, they look at you like you have a dick growing out of your forehead. I recieved a denial from the VA. A call and a long wait on the 800 number this morning reconfirmed my denial, which was based on my EAS of 01 / 1995 + 10 years = no MGIB Chapter 30 after 01 / 2005. According to them being activated and on active duty has no bearing on the issue. It would be nice if they were wrong, I am sure that have been in the past. I have completed my response letter and sent it in.

ilots
5 February 2007, 16:37
Unfortunately the Va rep at TAMU is giving the ten year answer to everything. They see EAS as EAS....when you tell them you went back in and EAS'ed again, they look at you like you have a dick growing out of your forehead. I recieved a denial from the VA. A call and a long wait on the 800 number this morning reconfirmed my denial, which was based on my EAS of 01 / 1995 + 10 years = no MGIB Chapter 30 after 01 / 2005. According to them being activated and on active duty has no bearing on the issue. It would be nice if they were wrong, I am sure that have been in the past. I have completed my response letter and sent it in. Does the GI bill offer better benefit to you than the Hazelwood exemption? - I would be surprised, if you are a full-time student.

CV
5 February 2007, 17:59
I am in the VocRehab program. Let me clear some things up.

(1) You need to be rated at 30% or more to be eligible.

(2) Dependant on your VocRehab plan, they will pay for a graduate degree if it fits the needs of suitable employment for your field.

They pay for EVERYTHING as it relates to your program, down to the pencils. You are eligible for $25k/year of benefits unless your program requires more; at which time it can be upped if approved by higher-up VA peeps.

What I want to know is... can I use the GI Bill after I am done with VocRehab?

EasyRunGent's
5 February 2007, 20:25
Does the GI bill offer better benefit to you than the Hazelwood exemption? - I would be surprised, if you are a full-time student.

No. Hazelwood is much better IMO. You dont get the check in the mail. You wont get over paid. At UTA, TT and WTAMU everything is done in the FA office and all your books are simply signed for. Very easy and simple. Makes you wonder why MGIB cant be that simple.

Hazelwood says you must have exhausted your MGIB before you can use their funds...unless you take an out of degree plan course. Now that my "buy before date" has passed with the VA, Hazelwood has picked me up. Best part is.....Hazelwood is for life....God Bless Texas..!!!

Greenhat
5 February 2007, 20:46
24/7,

Get your Congressional Representative involved. The VA finds all sorts of solutions when Congressional staff call.

24/7
5 February 2007, 21:09
24/7,

Get your Congressional Representative involved. The VA finds all sorts of solutions when Congressional staff call.


That's calling in the big guns...

ilots
6 February 2007, 01:19
No. Hazelwood is much better IMO. I figured such...in every instance I had heard about, it was better for vets to use Hazelwood. In my case, however, the VA automatically extended my benefits thanks to some deployments...despite begging them not to do so, after explaining the HA. So instead of having my whole tuition and fees paid, I got the monthly check....
What can I say, I love the farking Army, and the Army loves farking me! :D

Mav
6 February 2007, 07:10
I am in the VocRehab program. Let me clear some things up.

(1) You need to be rated at 30% or more to be eligible.

(2) Dependant on your VocRehab plan, they will pay for a graduate degree if it fits the needs of suitable employment for your field.

They pay for EVERYTHING as it relates to your program, down to the pencils. You are eligible for $25k/year of benefits unless your program requires more; at which time it can be upped if approved by higher-up VA peeps.

What I want to know is... can I use the GI Bill after I am done with VocRehab?

No.. as soon as you start pulling from Voc Rehab, you're considered to be "pulling" from GI Bill. You can only use one or other other.. If you use 7 months of Voc Rehab, you've used 7 months of GI Bill, too. If you use 20 months of GI Bill, you've used 20 months of Voc Rehab.

Also.. I went quite deep and was specifically informed that I could not receive a graduate degree from them, only undergraduate. They are there to get you into a career field, not advance you in one. I informed them that my current position inflames my injuries and I was told "That's fine, we'll give you journeyman experience somewhere else, but you have to quit your job".. otherwise, there was nothing they could do for me..

Did you hear that they would at your own briefing, CV? I'm curious as to who is putting out what information and where I can find regulations..

Greenhat
6 February 2007, 07:14
Mav,

You bug them enough and you can get just about anything. I know someone who got a degree in Art History via Vocab.

Sharky
6 February 2007, 08:58
Yep. For me this was a $10,000.00 mistake. Never got to spend a penny of it because I didn't know it, which I'm sure is why they dont tell you.

CV
6 February 2007, 10:47
Mav, I was told that if my career choice required a Masters, that I could go for that. As in, if I was going to be a therapist or something. But because I am IT, they will only push towards a Bachelors.

Now, that being said. There are ways to work around the system. You can work your ass off to get as many credits done as possible and stop 1 or 2 classes from graduation. At that point just start working on graduate level courses until you are a semester out from your 48 months of VocRehab benefits being over. Then take those last courses and get your degree.

Its shitty you have to think this way, but its the only work around I know of.

I plan to use the 48 months of benefits with VocRehab then switch over to GI Bill.

What are the benefits of VocRehab then? I am confused if it is the same as the GI Bill.

Mav
6 February 2007, 16:08
I was specifically told that if you use 36 months of VocRehab, that you have used up any GIBill benefits, as well. You can only use one or the other.. one gives you 48 months in a 12 year period and the other gives you 36 months in a 10 year period...

I have it written down from them, too... if it's wrong, I can bring it back, but per the PhD that was talking to us (who is a VocRehab Counsellor) the paperwork was given to us as verification of the truth and that covers their ass and my ass to make sure I get all the benefits I'm allowed to...

CV: that's what I was told, too.. they said that becaues I'm not entry level by any means (I'm the Senior SysAd for all ARSOF on a DoD Net), that they have nothing to offer me.. I told them that to be in a position that wouldn't inflame my injuries, I planned on going IA... well.. to be competitive in IA, I need both certifications AND a Master's (as most good IA degrees are only at the Graduate level)... and they said there was really no way.. I'm already in.. they MIGHT be able to help me out to get my Master's, BUT.. I'd have to prove that it inflamed my injuries AND have to quit my job (otherwise it would negate the entire purpose for the program)...

Greenhat: I'll call them, then.. the only person I'm good at nagging is my husband, unfortunately... we'll see how well talents can be reapplied, lol ;)

Mav
6 February 2007, 16:21
GI Bill, or Chapter 31:

Allotment is granted on a basis of hours/credits taken a semester. If you go part time, you're essentially losing money that would otherwise be offered. It is valid for 10 years post Armed Forces separation (with an Honorable Discharge), but will only be paid out for a total of 36 months. You can have a full time job, whatever. No stipulations and you're allowed any degree you want, pretty much, and most colleges are authorized (They won't let you go to a crappy school, pretty much)...

Voc Rehab (Chap 30):

Designed to get disabled vets into career fields. Designed for entry-level or journeyman level. They'll put you on one of five "Tracks", depending on what works.. from OJT, to education... and one of the five is Assisted Living.. for people who must have assistance to live (ie wheelchair, cannot function on their own, etc). Another is Self-Employment, where they guide you through the process to start your own business. I believe the last one is about finding you a new career field that doesn't inflame your injuries... they'll fund you in what you need to start a new career field. They'll help with resume writing, job searching, interviews, etc.. I believe on of the sub-tasks of the five tracks is talking to your employer about ways to accomodate you in your previous career field, so you can still do it. The example was a lady who was IT.. she was Reserve, activated, and severely injured her arm somehow and was unable to use it... so, Voc Rehab worked with her employer on buying a Voice-Recognition program so she could still perform her duties.

I have the document at home and will pull it up when I have a chance..

This is what I was told... however, as the good PhD said at the briefing: It is best to take a peek at everything you are entitled/eligible for because it's amazing what opportunities are out there for vets, especially veterans with disabilities... So I'd recommend everyone who is eligible to go talk to a Voc Rehab Counsellor.. just give it a shot.

I was told on many occassions during the briefing that you cannot use Chp 30 and then Chp 31 OR Chp 31 and then Chp 30. They are depleted by each other. Use 31 and you've used up your eligibility for 30.. and vice versa.

WS-G
6 February 2007, 16:21
Vocational Rehab is for entry level stuff, only, unfortunately, and in the end, pays less than someone with a more than entry level position, already, when compared to GI Bill..

I just got back from my briefing this past week... they will not pay for a Master's Degree or anything above basic entry level/journeyman level training. :(

Sounds much like the deal being offered here in Oregon. The State will cover up to $40K to "supplement" (right.... no "double-dipping" allowed!) whatever the VA offers, but only for a vocational certificate or an initial baccalaureate degree at an Oregon institution. Additional baccalaureates, graduate work of any kind, and/or anything at any level that's only available out-of-state is an absolute no-go.

mos13foxtrot
6 February 2007, 21:30
I qualified for VocRehab at 20% diasabled. I think alot of what you get is dependent on the people supplying you with the correct info.

One guys rep will hook up a vet better than another. Down in Texas for the most part the VA and the DAV do a pretty good job. I got friends in Florida for example who either are not talking to the right reps or the system out there is being run different.

Hazelwood in Texas is an outstanding program. If you qualify for that and GIbill the sky is the limit on where you can take your self.