Choice Act - Section 702, In-State Tuition for GI Bill

Curtis L. Coy

 

By Curtis L. Coy

Colleagues and Fellow Veterans, This is a note providing you an update on Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 (“Choice Act”) as it pertains to the in-state tuition provision – Section 702.

The in-state tuition provision requires VA to disapprove programs of education under the Post-9/11 and Montgomery GI Bill programs at public institutions of higher learning if the schools charge qualifying Veterans, spouses, and dependents tuition and fees in excess of the rate for resident students for terms that begin after July 1, 2015.  As such, any schools that do not meet the requirements will be disapproved for Post-9/11 GI Bill and Montgomery GI Bill benefits.

Students Eligible for In-State Tuition under Section 702 are:

* A Veteran who lives in the state in which the institution of higher learning is located (regardless of his/her formal state of residence) and enrolls in the school  within three years of discharge from a period of active duty service of 90 days or more.
* A spouse or child using transferred benefits who lives in the state in which the institution of higher learning is located (regardless of his/her formal state of residence) and enrolls in the school within 3 years of the transferor’s discharge from a period of active duty service of 90 days or more.
* A spouse or child using benefits under the Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship who lives in the state in which the institution of higher learning is located (regardless of his/her formal state of residence) and enrolls in the school within three years of the Servicemember’s death in the line of duty following a period of active duty service of 90 days or more.
* The following is a link providing additional information; http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/school_resources.asp

The law affecting in-state tuition charges is effective for terms starting after July 1, 2015. Our initial review of all states and territories indicate that none are fully compliant with the law – some are more compliant than others.  We are making every effort to ensure all states understand the requirements to comply.  We have reached out to all state Governors, our State Approving Agencies and a wide variety of others to ensure they know the ramifications of not complying with the Choice Act.

Public institutions must offer in-state tuition and fees to all eligible individuals identified above by July 1, 2015, to be eligible to receive payments for training on or after that date.  It is anticipated that VA will not issue payments for any students eligible for VA benefit payments until the school complies. Much can/could happen between now and July 1, 2015 but we like to provide what we know for the moment.

V/R

Curtis L. Coy
Deputy Under Secretary for Economic Opportunity
Veterans Benefits Administration
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

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* If you would like to review prior messages sent through this listserv, click http://benefits.va.gov/vow/economic_opportunity.htm.
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* If you are seeking employment in the federal government, particularly the VA, our VA for Vets high-tech tools and resources can help. Visit online at https://vaforvets.va.gov [ https://vaforvets.va.gov/pages/default.aspx ]_/pages/default.aspx_ or call 1-855-824-8387 [ http://vaforvets.va.gov/Pages/default.aspx%20or%20call%201-855-824-8387 ].

If you would like to contact us about your VA education benefits: You can send us a secure email that will usually be answered within 48 hours. You can also search for answers to frequently asked questions and register to be notified of any updates to the information. This contact method is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and can also be utilized worldwide. Click here to enter the "Ask A Question" site or here to review our frequently asked questions.

You can call 1-888-GIBILL-1 (1-888-442-4551). This line only accepts calls from 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM central time Monday – Friday.

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