VA Benefits

Chapter 30 – Montgomery GI Bill® – served Active Duty in the regular Armed Forces

Chapter 1606 – Montgomery GI Bill® for qualified members of the Reserves or National Guard

Chapter 31 – Veterans Vocational Rehabilitation for veterans with a service-connected disability

Chapter 35 – Dependents and survivors of Veterans Educational Assistance Program


Applying for Veterans Educational Benefits

Applications and appropriate documentation should be completed at the Registrar’s Office at least 8 – 12 weeks prior to your semester starting date to ensure timely processing. Application materials will be forwarded to the Regional Processing Office in Atlanta. GI Bill® checks are sent directly to the student, not the University.

Application Procedures

New Applicants under Chapter 30 or 1606: If you qualify for the Chapter 30 or 1606 educational benefit program and have never used it before, you will complete an original Application for VA Education Benefits at the Registrar Office. In addition, you will be required to provide one or more of the following documents:

  • Courthouse-certified (by the Court Recorder) copy #4 of DD214 (Chapter 30 applicants)
  • Signed copy of completed NOBE (Notice of Basic Eligibility) form, issued by Reserve/Guard unit (Chapter 1606 applicants).
  • If eligible for a “kicker”, copy of Kicker Contract.

New Applicants under Chapter 35: You will be required to submit an original application, and must supply the name, social security number, date of birth, and claim or service number of the veteran. If you have already established eligibility for Chapter 35, you must supply your claim number and/or a copy of your Certificate of Eligibility.

New Applicants under Chapter 31: Eligibility for Chapter 31, Veterans Vocational Rehabilitation, is determined by the Veterans Vocational Rehabilitation counselor. Once Chapter 31 benefits have been approved, the school will be sent an authorization form to complete. Student Accounts Office will be notified for billing purposes, and the bookstore will be notified that the student may purchase books.

Transfer Students: Students who have previously used the above benefits must complete a Change of School/Program form at the Registrar Office.

Payment methods:

  • Regular Pay: check is sent to the student after each month is completed.
  • Advance Pay: the student is paid in advance for the first partial and first full month of attendance (advance paychecks may be picked up at the Business Office at the beginning of the semester). Subsequent checks are sent after each month is completed.

Students should phone in their enrollment information 1-977-823-2378 and verify via web site, under subsection WAVE.

Educational benefits for Spouses and Dependents of Veterans

Chapter 35 – Survivors and Dependents Education benefits

Survivors of deceased veterans, spouses of living veterans and children of either who are between 18 and 26 may be eligible if the veterans death or permanent/total disability was the result of service in the Armed Forces. Eligibility of spouses generally extends to 10 years from the date of death or establishment of total disability. In certain cases, the age limit for children may be extended.

For more information, please contact the Department of Veterans Affairs:  1-888-442-4551 or

Responsibilities of the Student Receiving Veteran Educational Benefits

  • Notify your School Certifying Official (Financial Aid Office) of your intended enrollment each semester and summer.
  • Notify your School Certifying Official of any change in course load (drop, add, withdrawal) within one week of the change. This will help eliminate or reduce potential overpayment of benefits.
  • Notify your School Certifying Official of your current campus address and phone number and any change of address.
  • Notify your School Certifying Official of any change in major.

If your Reserve or National Guard unit is activated and you must leave the university for a period of time, you must notify the Office of Academic Records of your last date of attendance. You must also provide a copy of your federal activation orders. The above office will notify your professors. If you withdraw due to activation during the semester, financial aid will be returned, you will be withdrawn with “W” grades and you will not be charged for tuition/fees for the term although you will incur room and board charges if applicable. If you received GI Bill® benefits, you will be permitted to keep funds received. Entitlement for those months will not be counted. Your 10-year delimiting date may be extended for the number of months you were activated.

Termination of Benefits

Class attendance:  The Office of Academic Records will monitor class attendance via your professors. Students who do not attend on a regular basis, stop attending, or withdraw (officially or unofficially) will be reported to the Atlanta Regional Processor. Such notification may include a last date of attendance for each class, and may result in adjustment or termination of your GI Bill® eligibility. You should have a drop/withdrawal form signed by the Office of Academic Records to minimize GI Bill® overpayment.

Academic Probation/Suspension and GI Bill® eligibility: A student who is placed on academic probation (or probation combined with academic suspension) for two consecutive semesters at Ave Maria University will have his/her GI Bill® Benefits terminated.

In addition:

  • Affected students will be notified that their benefits have been terminated.
  • If the student re-enrolls or continues enrollment for subsequent semesters, the student will be certified for the subsequent semester(s) PROVIDED the student completes the appropriate VA forms (Available in the Office of Academic Records).
  • Termination of benefits is NOT limited to one time at the University. Benefits will be terminated if the recipient re-enrolls and is subsequently placed on probation /suspension during two semesters of enrollment.

Academic Suspension:  A student who is placed on academic suspension will immediately have his/her GI Bill® benefits terminated.

Education Benefits Overpayments

An overpayment may result if you receive a grade of I, WF, and AU which are not used in computing requirements for your degree program/graduation or if you repeat a course in which you previously received a passing grade, unless a higher grade in that course is required for graduation. Additional causes for overpayments are the following: stopping attending classes; withdrawal from school; information is received from professors which indicate you stopped attending or have not attended class.

Avoiding Education Overpayments

To avoid overpayment of benefits, veterans and dependents must immediately report to the Office of Academic Records any change in credit hours, drop/add, withdrawal or termination of attendance.

  • All overpayments must be repaid to the Department of Veteran Affairs (DVA).
  • Failure to repay an overpayment will result in adverse credit and debt collection may be turned over to a collection agency or the IRS.
  • Contact the Office of Academic Records before you cash your next check if you suspect a change in credit loan or termination of attendance could result in an overpayment. Obtain signature of the Registrar Office on any drop card or withdrawal form.

How VA benefits are reported on your FAFSA

By FAFSA definition, a veteran is any service member who has been on active duty (not including basic training) for at least one day and was released from active duty for any other reason than dishonorable discharge.  If currently under active duty but scheduled to be released by June 30th, the student is considered a veteran.  National Guard and Reservists are also defined as veterans if called to active duty under Title 10 (Federal Authority) for purposes other than training.

When you complete the FAFSA, you report income such as monthly payments to you from working, dividends, and child support, to name a few.  There are certain funds included in VA education benefits that are not categorized as monthly income that you do not report on the FAFSA.  Including them in the income section can reduce your need-based financial aid.  Other benefits are accounted for under Worksheet B as Veteran’s non education benefits (income).  Here you will report benefits such as disability, dependency and indemnity compensation, death pension, and VA Education Work Study.  This is a form of non-taxable income.

If you have any questions as to the number of months of entitlement or the amount you will receive based on full or part time enrollment (Question 46 and 47 on the FAFSA), please call the Veterans Administration at 1-888-GIBILL1.