FORT KNOX, Ky. - Service members wanting to transfer their post 9-11 G.I. Bill benefits to dependent children must do so before they retire and before their children turn 23 years old.

This is according to the chief, Education Incentives Branch (EIB), the Adjutant General Directorate (TAGD), U.S. Army Human Resources Command. In fact, these are the two top reasons Soldiers are denied transfer benefits, said Sarah Rowley, chief, EIB. Soldiers sometimes file erroneous congressional inquiries based upon this.

"Another important fact is that dependents must be registered in DEERS (Dependent Enrollment Eligibility System) and they must be full-time college students," Rowley said. They must take an active interest yearly because DEERS staff regularly checks their college status, and they will be dropped from DEERS if they're not full-time students."

Teddi Embrey, a human resource specialist who also works in the TAGD's EIB added: "You must have been a full-time college student in DEERS by age 21; you have to have the benefits transferred to you by age 23, and you have up until age 26 to use them. You can't just wait until the child is 21 to start the process."

Service members interested in transferring post 9/11 G.I. Bill benefits to qualifying children, start the process through the EIB, Embrey said. They must also be on active duty or selective Army Reservists.

"We're not having many problems with the post 9-11 G.I. Bill itself," Rowley said, "it's with the transferring process and people not getting all the information correct.

"The VA keeps numbers on overall service members who use the G.I. Bill, but since the transfer process began nearly two years ago, 58,000 Soldiers have transferred their benefits, including the National Guard, Rowley said. Different agencies work the transfer process, depending upon what type of category the Soldier falls into-enlisted, officer, warrant officer, and depending upon career field."

Additional notes defining eligibility for transferability of education benefits include:

Aca,!Ac Not barred for reenlistment or flagged due to adverse personnel actions
Aca,!Ac Having at least six years of service on the date of request
Aca,!Ac Have completed a minimum of six years in the Armed Services and agreeing to serve another four years from the date of request, or
Aca,!Ac Have at least 10 years of service on the date of election and not being able to commit four more years due to a retention control point or mandatory retirement date, and commit to serve for the maximum time allowed by either the RCP or the MRD as the date of request, or
Aca,!Ac Have served at least 20 years on or before August 1, 2009, therefore, no additional service required.

Requests to transfer benefits begin by using the DoD's Transferability of Education Benefits (TEB) website at: https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/TEB/. Steps include:

Aca,!Ac Check the "Post 9/11 G.I.Bill Chapter 33."
Aca,!Ac Edit the information for any transferees
Aca,!Ac Check all the "Transferability" acknowledgements
Aca,!Ac Print a copy for records and submit electronically

Upon receiving DoD approval, apply through the Veterans Affairs online application at: http://vabenefits.vba.va.gov/vonapp/main.asp and use Form 22-1990E.

"We are administrators of the program but the VA makes the legislation," Rowley said.

For more information, contact the Department of Veterans Affairs (Education) at 1-888-4551 or visit www.gibill.va.gov.

If enlisted Soldiers experience problems they should contact their retention NCO/career counselor office; officers between the ranks of first lieutenant to lieutenant colonel and warrant

officer 1 or selected reserves should contact the HRC Education Incentives Branch officer at 1-800-872-8272.

For more information on the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill transfer process or other education services, call 1-888 ARMYHRC (276-9472) or email the EIB at: hrc.tagd.post911gibill@conus.army.mil'

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16