My school changed all classes to online. Will I still qualify for my GI Bill benefits?
Yes. Based on the recently passed legislation, if your school converts from an approved residence training course to online training for that course (distance learning) due to COVID-19, your benefits will not change. The new law applies to both current and new students enrolled in courses affected by COVID-19. If you’re currently receiving GI Bill benefits, payments will continue automatically. You do not have to do anything. You’ll continue to receive the same monthly housing allowance payments you received for resident training until Dec. 21, 2020, or until your school resumes normal operations, for programs converted solely to online training. Note: Other types of changes to your enrollment status (for example, dropping a class results in a reduced rate of pursuit) may affect payments.
From the beginning of this crisis, VA has been working with Congress to preserve GI Bill benefits for those impacted by COVID-19 during this difficult time. On March 21 the President signed into law S.3503, giving VA temporary authority to continue GI Bill payments uninterrupted during an emergency. The new law allows VA to pay education benefits regardless of the fact that a program has been converted from resident training to online training, even if an online training hasn’t been approved or is not approvable.
VA is working closely with schools to ensure enrollments are accurately certified and processed. If your school is closed secondary to COVID-19, VA will continue paying your benefits through the end of the term or 28 days from the date of closure, whichever is sooner. If your school is in session, but you cannot attend due to COVID-19, we can pay you through your last date of attendance, but not through the end of the term. This may result in a debt and overpayment. If this happens, you can submit a waiver request.
Please be sure we have your current email address on file. We can send certain information only electronically, and some schools have shifted to only electronic communication during this time. You can sign in to update your email online through our “Ask a question” tool or call the Education Call Center toll-free at 888-442-4551, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET.
- Learn more about how COVID-19 may affect your education benefits
- Learn more about electronic communication
See also: Food, housing, and education assistance