Soldiers who request to transfer Post 9/11 GI Bill education benefits to family members on or after Aug. 1 will incur a four-year service obligation, regardless of their time in service.
The pending policy change is required by the federal laws that established the Post 9/11 GI Bill program four years ago.
The upcoming change eliminates the current option of zero, one-, two- or three-year service obligations determined by an applicant’s time in service and retirement eligibility.
The four-year service obligations incurred on or after Aug. 1 will begin on the date of the benefits transfer request, and must be served in the same component, unless the soldiers is not eligible for continued service.
The latter category includes soldiers who are retiring under the Temporary Early Retirement Authority, the drawdown program known as the 15-year early retirement plan.
By law, soldiers who retired and were placed on the retired list on or before Aug. 1, 2009, are not eligible to transfer unused Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits because their last day of duty was on or before July 31, 2009.
The Post 9/11 GI Bill was established Aug. 1, 2009.
It authorizes officers and enlisted soldiers of the active component and selected reserves to transfer unused education benefits to immediate family members — a spouse, one of more children, or any combination of spouse and child.