Veterans' Benefits - Frequently Asked Questions

CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) UPDATES

In an effort to keep everyone healthy, our on-campus operations are limited until further notice, but we are continuing to provide services by phone and through email. However, we encourage students to utilize virtual options as much as possible when seeking assistance.

Student Veteran Services is available to assist students remotely via telephone and email from Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM using the below information:

Phone: 940-369-8021

Email: Registrar.Veterans@unt.edu

Paperwork for enrollment certifications in current and future terms may be emailed to us from your official UNT email address.

If you do need to come to our office, appointments will be available Wednesdays and Thursdays from 8 am – 5 pm.

For up-to-date information on UNT’s response to the coronavirus, please visit healthalerts.unt.edu. If coming to the campus, please review UNT's Guide for Returning to Campus.

1. How do I apply for my GI Bill® educational benefits?
2. How long does it take VA to determine my eligibility?
3. What do I do with the Certificate of Eligibility I received from VA?
4. What happens if I add, drop, or withdraw?
5. How do I report a change of major to the VA?
6. How many semester credit hours are considered to be full-time for VA purposes?
7. How many hours do I need to be registered in to get BAH (Post 9/11)?
8. When do I receive my monthly payments?
9. How are my tuition and fees paid each semester and will my classes be dropped for non-payment?
10. Do I have to get certified for each semester I attend school?
11. Do I have to submit my Certificate of Eligibility (COE) for EVERY term?
12. Can I take a course at another school and still receive benefits?
13. Can I repeat a course?
14. Can I use my benefits for a graduate degree?
15. Can I use my benefits for a study abroad program?
16. How do I use Federal Tuition Assistance for Active Servicemembers?

1. How do I apply for my GI Bill® educational benefits?

You may apply for the GI Bill® educational benefits online at www.va.gov. Click on the “Apply for education benefits” link to get started. You will need to submit your DD-214 Member 4 Form or Notice of Eligibility –NOBE, DD-2384, (Reservist only) to the VA so they can determine your eligibility of educational benefits. Note: If you are the veteran, scan and save your DD-214 Member 4 Form to a PDF. If you are a reservist, scan and save your NOBE DD-2384 Form. (You will be able to attach a PDF within the online application).
You may also apply for the GI Bill® educational benefits using VA Form 22-1990 and mailing it with a copy of your DD-214 or DD-2384 directly to the VA Regional Office. Be sure to make a copy of your application to bring with you to Student Veterans Services Office.

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2. How long does it take VA to determine my eligibility?

Please allow the VA Regional Processing Office at least 30 days to process your application. If you are approved for the benefit, you will receive a Certificate of Eligibility from the VA in the mail. For updates on processing times, you can contact the VA directly at 1-888-442-4551.

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3. What do I do with the Certificate of Eligibility I received from VA?

All students who wish to use their VA Education Benefits for his/her courses should first register for classes. AFTER you have registered for classes, bring a copy of your Certificate of Eligibility along with your DD-214 to the VA Certifying Officials at the Student Veteran Services – Benefits office in Sage Hall, Suite 236 for processing.

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4. What happens if I add, drop, or withdraw?

All adds, drops, and withdrawals MUST be reported to the Student Veteran Services – Benefits office by the veteran immediately after the change is made. Regardless of when you make a change to your schedule, you MUST notify a VA Certifying Official of the change immediately. Depending on when you drop/withdraw from a course, you may owe money back to the VA.

Post 9/11 GI Bill®

Depending on when you add/drop/withdraw from the course, you may owe money to the school or to the VA. We encourage you to speak with a VA Certifying Official before you make any schedule changes to see how this will affect your benefits. UNT VA Certifying Officials are located at the Student Veteran Services – Benefits office in Sage Hall, Suite 236. You can also reach them at 940-369-8021 or Registrar.Veterans@unt.edu.

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5. How do I report a change of major to the VA?

You should change your major by contacting the advising office that handles the major you want to change to. (For example, if you want to change to Math you should talk to an advisor in the College of Arts and Sciences, GAB room 220.) Remember, you will need to provide the VA Certifying Officials with a degree plan for your new major. Your Academic Advisor will not notify the VA Certifying Officials when you change your major. It is your responsibility. There are VA forms which need to be completed by the veteran/student when a change in major or program has occurred. Please see a VA Certifying Official in the Student Veteran Services – Benefits office in Sage Hall, Suite 236.

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6. How many semester credit hours are considered to be full-time for VA purposes?

UNDERGRADUATE

Semester

Full Time

¾ Time

½ Time*

Less Than ½ Time
(Tuition Only)

Fall/Spring

12 or more

9 - 11

6 - 8

Less than 6

3WK

2

--

1

--

5WK 1

4

3

2

1

5WK 2

4

3

2

1

8WK

6

4 - 5

3

2

10WK

7

5 - 6

4

3

SUMM

9

7 - 8

5 - 6

3 - 4

GRADUATE- Must be graduate level courses

Semester

Full Time

¾ Time

½ Time*

Less Than ½ Time
(Tuition Only)

Fall/Spring

9

6 - 8

5

Less than 5

3WK

2

--

1

--

5WK 1

3

--

2

1

5WK 2

3

--

2

1

8WK

4

3

2

1

10WK

5

--

3

1 - 2

SUMM

9

6 - 8

5

1 - 4

*Note: Students using Ch. 33 Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits must be at MORE than ½ time in order to receive the housing stipend. If you are exactly ½ time or less, you will NOT receive a housing stipend.

For more information on GI Bill® payments from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs see the current rate tables on the GI Bill® website.

Training Time
According to the VA, "Enrollment=Training Time." Payment rates for training time are affected by the number of degree countable credit hours for which you are enrolled.

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7. How many hours do I need to be registered in to get BAH (Post 9/11)?

VA calculates BAH based on Rate of Pursuit (see below).

Rate of Pursuit – applies ONLY to Chapter 33 students.

Examples: Full-time = 12 credits, for University of North Texas, so rate of pursuit for:

o 6 credits is 50% (6 ÷ 12 = 50%)
o 7 credits is 60% (7 ÷ 12 = 58% would be rounded up to the nearest tenth, which is 60%)

The housing allowance is paid if the student's rate of pursuit is more than 50%. Rate of pursuit determines whether a student receives or does not receive the housing allowance. If pursuit is more than 50% the student receives the housing allowance. If the rate of pursuit is 50% or less, then the student doesn't receive the housing allowance. (Active duty personnel receiving Chapter 33 benefits or spouses of active duty personnel receiving Transfer of Entitlement (ToE) benefits are not eligible for the housing allowance.)

**Students whose enrollment is exclusively distance learning will be eligible for a monthly housing allowance equal to 50% of the national average of all Basic Allowances for Housing. Please speak with a UNT VA Certifying Official for questions on whether a given blended/hybrid class will meet the requirements to be considered on-campus training for BAH purposes.

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8. When do I receive my monthly payments?

Regular and Partial Payments
Payments are made at the first of each month for the prior month's attendance. For example, you would receive a payment in March for attendance during the month of February. Please note that under the following circumstances, you may receive only a partial payment:
o If you drop a course or courses and it affects your overall training time, you will be paid at your new training time rate.
o If you attend courses for less than a full month, such as at the beginning or end of a semester, your payment for that month will be prorated based on the number of days you actually attended (example: if the first day of class for a semester is on August 26th, you would only receive a few days of housing stipend for the month of August).

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9. How are my tuition and fees paid each semester and will my classes be dropped for non-payment?

Veteran Tuition/Fee Payments
Chapter 33 (Post 9/11) and Chapter 31 (Vocational Rehabilitation):

All students using Chapter 33 (Post 9/11) and Chapter 31 (Vocational Rehabilitation) benefits will have their courses held through the class drop periods for non-payment as long as they have turned in ALL necessary paperwork to the Student Veteran Services-Benefits office by the applicable deadlines. If you fail to complete the required paperwork, your classes will not be held. However, if you owe any balances from prior terms that are not being paid by the VA, your classes are subject to be dropped at these payment deadlines.

If you are using Chapter 33 (Post 9/11) benefits and the VA has determined your percentage rate at 100%, you will generally NOT need to make a tuition payment. However, if you are charged a fee that cannot be covered by the VA (examples include late registration fees, repeated course fees, etc.), you are responsible for making payment by the applicable deadlines to avoid being charged a late payment fee.

If you are using Chapter 33 (Post 9/11) benefits and the VA has determined your percentage rate at 90% or lower, you will be responsible for making a payment on your student account. Failure to pay your portion of the owed tuition and fees could result in late payment fees during the semester and also could result in your classes in a future semester be subject to being dropped for a prior term balance.
(Ex: Tuition/Fees paid by VA is at 90%, Student owes UNT 10% of tuition/fees.)

Again, you must complete your paperwork with our office each semester in order for a code to be applied to your account. The code will be set at the percentage rate determined by the VA

Non-Chapter 33/Chapter 31:

If you are not using Chapter 33 (Post 9/11) or Chapter 31 benefits, the VA will not pay your tuition/fees directly to UNT. You are responsible for paying all tuition/fees by the deadline dates for each semester. Failure to make arrangements for your tuition and fees owed to the school by the applicable deadlines may result in your classes being dropped for non-payment.

Late Payment Fees

Chapter 33 (Post 9/11) or Chapter 31 (Vocational Rehabilitation):

Punitive late payment fees are not enforced for Chapter 33 (Post 9/11) students unless they are the result of unpaid balances that are NOT related to the disbursement of funding from the VA to the school as part of the student’s benefit. For example: if a student owes for a Repeated Course Fee that the VA will not cover, they may be subject to a late payment fee if they do not pay their balance by the applicable payment deadlines. If a student is charged a late payment fee that they feel should not have been charged due to incoming payment from the VA directly to the school, they may contact our office for further review.

 

Non-Chapter 33/Chapter 31:

Students not using Chapter 33 or Chapter 31 are responsible for making all payments by the applicable deadlines and are subject to any late payment fees that result from non-payment.

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10. Do I have to get certified for each semester I attend school?

YES.  You must fill out the VA Enrollment Form each semester after you register for classes. The VA Enrollment Form lets the VA Certifying Officials know you want to be certified for your classes, gives you the opportunity to update your current contact information, and gives UNT permission to release your information to the VA.  Certification with the VA is not automatic. Forms can be printed from your computer, completed by you, and sent back to the Student Veteran Services – Benefits office in Sage Hall, Suite 236 via email, fax, or in person.  The email address is Registrar.Veterans@unt.edu and the fax number is 940-565-3441. You can find the forms that may be required for your certification here.

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11. Do I have to submit my Certificate of Eligibility (COE) for EVERY term?

Yes, all Chapter 33 students must submit an updated COE or Award letter with their Enrollment Certification form each term so the VA Certifying Officials can verify the most current benefit percentage and months of service remaining.

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12. Can I take a course at another school and still receive benefits?

Yes, as long as that course will fulfill a degree requirement at UNT. The VA Certifying Officials at UNT will need to send your secondary school a Parent Institution Letter. You will need to bring a copy of your schedule and bill from the secondary school to the Student Veteran Services – Benefits office in Sage Hall, Suite 236. If you have contact information for the VA Office at your secondary school bring that as well. Once all documentation is received, our office will review to ensure the course(s) will transfer back to UNT and count toward your UNT degree and send the Parent Institution Letter as appropriate.

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13. Can I repeat a course?

If you fail a course or receive an unsatisfactory grade (i.e. did not make the grade required by the academic department for degree credit), you may duplicate the course and receive VA Educational Benefits for the same course as needed. Courses that are successfully completed may not be certified for VA purposes if they are repeated. VA will not pay benefits to repeat courses to enhance a student’s GPA therefore all other duplications cannot be certified. Please note that the VA will not pay for any associated Repeated Course Fees.

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14. Can I use my benefits for a graduate degree?

If you have eligibility and benefits remaining, they can be used towards a second undergraduate or graduate degree. For More Information

Please visit the Student Veteran Services – Benefits office in Sage Hall, Suite 236, call (940) 369-8021 Monday - Friday between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Central Standard Time, or e-mail Registrar.Veterans@unt.edu.

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15. Can I use my benefits for a study abroad program?

The ONLY study abroad courses that can be certified to the VA for education benefit purposes are faculty-led courses that are owned by UNT and taught by UNT faculty. These courses must also be counting toward graduation requirements for your degree program.

Under no circumstances can we certify a “placeholder” course to the VA (example: exchange programs or third-party programs where a student takes classes at another institution abroad and transfers their coursework back to UNT).

For Chapter 33 and Chapter 31 students taking faculty-led UNT courses abroad, ONLY the tuition and fees for the course can be certified to the VA to be paid. No travel expenses, non-course study abroad fees, excursion fees, etc. can be reported to the VA for payment.

If you are planning to participate in a study abroad program and are unsure whether your VA benefit can be used, please contact our office at 940-369-8021 or Registrar.Veterans@unt.edu.

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16. How do I use Federal Tuition Assistance for Active Servicemembers?

For Servicemembers interested in utilizing Federal Tuition Assistance through their respective Service, it is important that you first contact an Education Service Officer, military counselor, or Service. Approval for Federal Tuition Assistance is granted through your respective Service – below is a link to the education portal for each Service:

Army

Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard

Air Force

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government web site at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.