Veteran Affairs and GI Bill® Benefits
Liberty University is approved to offer GI Bill® educational benefits by the Virginia State Approving Agency. These benefits include the Montgomery GI Bill® (Active Duty/Selected Reserves), the Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program, the Post-9/11 GI Bill®, and Vocational Rehabilitation.
If you know you are eligible for one of these benefits, please click on the appropriate benefit located below for a step-by-step guide on how to use it. If you are unsure of your eligibility or entitlement, please contact the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs at (888) 442-4551.
- Chapter 30: Montgomery GI Bill Active Duty
- Chapter 31: VA Vocational Rehabilitation
- Chapter 33: Post-9/11 GI Bill
- Chapter 35: Dependents’ Education Assistance
- Chapter 1606: Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserves
Veterans Benefits Policies
Below are the veterans benefits policies that will apply as you use your benefits at Liberty University. These policies have been given to us by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Once classes are certified, and the tuition and fee amounts are reported by Liberty University to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), any changes in enrollment may result in the student going into debt management with the VA. Unpaid debt may cause benefits to be withheld if a valid repayment agreement is not established with the VA, and these withheld funds will be used toward the student’s debt.
Debt Management Letters
A Debt Management Letter details any amount that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has overpaid. Most typically, Debt Management Letters are issued due to a change of enrollment, switching your GI Bill®, or a processing error. If you have specific questions as to why you were sent into overpayment, including specific amounts, please contact the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at (888) 442-4551.
On January 5th, 2021, the VA Overpayments and Debt policy was officially updated due to changes in federal law from the passing of Isakson & Roe: Public Law 116-315-Section 1019. Any changes to certifications of tuition and fees or Yellow Ribbon that would result in a debt will now be owed by the school. You will no longer be put into debt by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for any changes in tuition and fees or Yellow Ribbon; however, you will now be placed into debt with your school. If there are qualifying mitigating circumstances, the Office of Military Affairs will report any changes in tuition and fees or Yellow Ribbon to the VA referencing those circumstances. This may lessen the debt issued to Liberty University, which would reduce the debt that you owe to the school. Be aware that you will still be placed into debt with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for any Monthly Housing Allowance or Book Stipend that may be owed. If you have any questions about what the debt will be, or if you would like to submit mitigating circumstances after the fact, you will need to contact the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at (888) 442-4551.
Grades of FN
An FN is an unofficial withdrawal due to non-attendance. In order to receive an FN, the student must have logged into the class and not attended for 21 consecutive days. An online student attends by logging into their class on Blackboard and submitting assignments.
When a student receives a grade of FN, it must be reported to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as a punitive grade. A punitive grade is a grade assigned for the pursuit of a course that is used in determining the student’s overall progress toward completion of the school’s requirements for graduation. Since drops and withdrawals do not contribute towards the GPA, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will not, under most circumstances, pay for a course in which a grade of FN is received. The withdrawal date will be reported to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as the last date of documented attendance in the course. For more information about payments for grades of FN, please contact the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, as it is ultimately their policy on how they pay.
Intensive (J term) courses can span the full length of a subterm or the entire semester, but will contain a residential portion in either a 1-week or weekend format. The official start and end dates of J term courses are determined by the Office of the Registrar and will typically include additional time outside of the residential portion of the class. The official dates that are set by the Registrar will be reported to the Department of Veterans Affairs for enrollment certification. Months of entitlement will be used from the entire time reported, not just the time spent in the residential portion of the intensive.
Pay Rates and Training Times
The Department of Veterans Affairs will issue your payments based on which chapter of benefits you are using and your enrollment, course load, or training time. Please review our VA Training Times and VA Pay Rates webpage for more information.
Post-9/11 GI Bill Policies
For all policies related to the Post-9/11 GI Bill, please visit our Post-9/11 Benefit Guide.
Per the VA Certifying Official Handbook, page 48, remedial and deficiency courses offered as independent study (online) cannot be approved and cannot be certified to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. These are courses designed to correct deficiencies in basic mathematics, English, and reading at the elementary or secondary level. These courses can be certified as part of an approved program, but only for students for whom a verifiable need has been established AND are taking the course residentially.
No remedial courses taken online can be paid for by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. For Liberty University, this includes the following courses: ENGL 100, MATH 100, MATH 110, and all courses with the course prefix CLST. The only remedial courses that will be paid are those taken residentially. If a student takes one of these courses at Liberty University residentially, we can certify that class.
Additionally, courses GRST 500 and GRST 501 are not paid by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. These courses are fee-based courses and are not charged to every student. These courses may be required for a student to complete due to his or her GPA. The only exception to this policy is residential students taking GRST 500. In this case, the Department of Veterans Affairs may pay the fee for GRST 500 if it is taken in conjunction with another course that can be certified for GI Bill® benefits.
Satisfactory Academic Progress and GPA
Veterans Affairs Education Benefits will not be affected due to Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) until the student is placed on Academic Suspension or Dismissal. Students who go on Academic Suspension must complete an Academic Contract per University policy in order to continue registering for courses and have courses certified for VA Benefits. Students who are on Academic Dismissal are unable to register for courses and therefore unable to utilize their Veterans Benefits. Otherwise, a student’s GPA has no effect on their Veterans Benefits.
For more information on SAP, please go to the Financial Aid Policies web page.
Taking a Course at Another Institution
To have a course certified for VA benefits at another school, Liberty University must issue a Parent Letter to your secondary school’s VA certifying official. Before a letter can be issued, the course must first be approved by the Registrar’s Office. Please follow the instructions below to submit this request.
- Retrieve the appropriate Future Course Request form on the Forms and Downloads page.
- Fill out the form and check the box indicating that you are using GI Bill® benefits.
- Submit the form for approval.
- A copy of the Future Course Request form will be forwarded on to the Office of Military Affairs for review.
- The Office of Military Affairs will inform the other institution’s School Certifying Official that these courses can be processed under the GI Bill® benefit.
- The other institution’s School Certifying Official will process out the GI Bill® accordingly.
Terminating/Cancelling Your Certifications
According to the VA, after a GI Bill® payment has been released to either the student or the school for the certified period of enrollment, the GI Bill® cannot be terminated in order to conserve entitlement. Tuition and fee payments of the Post-9/11 GI Bill are typically made within 1-2 weeks after your tuition and fees are reported to the VA, which occurs after the add/drop deadline for each given sub-term. Monthly Housing Allowance payments for the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and standard payments for students using Chapters 30, 35, and 1606, are released directly to the student the first week of the month following a previous month’s certified period of enrollment. Please note these timeframes are not guaranteed and are beyond the control of Liberty University.
If you do not wish to use your GI Bill in a given semester after it has already been processed, you must email VAFinance@liberty.edu, clearly stating your desire to have your GI Bill® certification terminated for a specific enrollment. After it is confirmed that payment has not been released by the VA, a certifying official will proceed with terminating your certifications. In circumstances where payment has already been released, please note there are exceptions that may allow us to terminate your certifications, outlined below:
- The student drops a course(s) in the term.
- The student withdraws from or receives an FN in a course(s) in the term (please see the withdrawal policy for the full ramifications of withdrawing while using veterans benefits).
- The student receives Federal Tuition Assistance for the same course(s).
Students using Chapter 31 VA Vocational Rehabilitation who wish to have their certifications terminated will need to have their VA Counselor contact Liberty University directly.
Tuition Assistance and Veterans Benefits
Per the 2014 Department of Defense Memorandum of Understanding, federal Tuition Assistance and Veterans Affairs benefits cannot be used to pay for the same course(s). Students using Post-9/11 GI Bill® are the only exception to this policy. These students may use their Veterans Education Benefits to cover the remaining balance for courses not completely covered by Federal Tuition Assistance. In this case, GI Bill® funding can only be used to pay the remaining balance between the amount of funding from Tuition Assistance and 100% of the tuition charged by the university. Online military students at Liberty University are eligible to receive a discounted tuition rate. Eligible undergraduate military students are charged $250 per credit hour, which is equal to the Tuition Assistance per credit hour rate for most branches. As a result, Tuition Assistance funding typically pays 100% of the tuition for undergraduate military students, so GI Bill® funding is not required. Graduate military students receive a discount that brings their credit hour charge to $275 per credit hour, which TA typically will not cover in full. When TA does not cover the full cost of tuition, military students may be able to use their Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits for the remaining balance not covered by TA. Students using the Post-9/11 GI Bill will have their enrollment certified with the VA for $0 if Tuition Assistance is covering the full cost of the course(s). This will generate a housing and book stipend payment for the student for the duration of the course(s). Students should keep in mind that Active Duty students and their spouses are not eligible to receive Monthly Housing Allowance (MHA) from their GI Bill® benefits.
Service members may also be able to use GI Bill benefits concurrently with federal Tuition Assistance through Top-Up. The Top-Up benefit may only be used with the Chapter 30 Montgomery GI Bill: Active Duty, to receive from the VA those tuition costs that exceed, or are not authorized in, the amount of TA provided to the service member by his or her military branch. The concurrent use of GI Bill® benefits and TA will never exceed 100% of the actual costs of tuition.
The Post-9/11 GI Bill does not have a Top-Up option. However, the VA does allow students to combine these 2 benefits as long as the tuition does not exceed 100%. For example, if a student is approved for $250 in Tuition Assistance, $500 could be certified under the Post-9/11 GI Bill for a $750 course. This payment would be sent directly to the school and applied to the student account based on the percentage of eligibility. For more information about the Post-9/11 GI Bill, please see the Post-9/11 GI Bill webpage.
Students eligible for Veterans Education Benefits will have their enrollment certified with the VA. If Federal Tuition Assistance is later applied toward a course that has been certified, the certification for Veterans Benefits will be either amended (Post-9/11) to account for the Tuition Assistance or terminated (all other GI Bill® chapters) in accordance with the 2014 Department of Defense Memorandum of Understanding.
VA Form 22-1999
The term “VA Form 22-1999” is referring to your electronic enrollment certification that the Office of Military Affairs submits to the Department of Veteran Affairs. This certification reports your hours and term of enrollment to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and will then determine the amounts that can be paid for your course(s) through your benefit. You will always be notified by email to your Liberty email account when an enrollment certification is submitted or adjusted.
If a student is receiving the Montgomery GI Bill (Ch. 30 or 1606), they will use Web Automated Verification of Enrollment (WAVE) or call the toll-free Interactive Voice Response (IVR) telephone line at (877) VA-ECERT (877-823-2378) to verify their attendance on a monthly basis. This is required for the VA to issue payment to the student. If the student is receiving Post-9/11 GI Bill (Ch. 33), Survivors’ and Dependents’ Education Assistance (Ch. 35) or Vocational Rehabilitation (Ch. 31) benefits, they do not need to verify their attendance.
NOTE: The WAVE and IVR systems do not update account information instantly. Instead, verifications and other submissions are stored and processed manually. If WAVE does not reflect the student’s current enrollment status, it is most likely because the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has not processed the current enrollment certification (VA Form 22-1999). The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs may experience busy times during high enrollment periods. In which case, it may take 3-4 weeks to process everyone’s changes.
Since withdrawals do not contribute toward your GPA, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will not, under most circumstances, pay for a withdrawn course. If you are unable to continue in the course due to mitigating circumstances, you may qualify to have your course covered by your benefits up to the withdrawal date. The withdrawal date, in accordance with federal guidelines, is recognized as the date the student notifies Liberty University of the intent to withdraw, either in writing or orally. To learn more about Liberty University’s Withdrawal Policy, please visit the Financial Aid Policies page.
When a student withdraws from a course, Liberty University must submit an adjustment to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Because the VA will not pay for the course, the school may receive a debt letter for tuition and fees associated with that course from the VA. This will result in the student owing the school for the tuition and fee costs that were recouped by the VA.
Typically, the only documentation that Liberty University may require for withdrawals is for Military Withdrawal requests. If the Office of Military Affairs is notified that a student has been approved for one of these withdrawals, a School Certifying Official will make an update to your certification indicating the mitigating circumstances that led to the withdrawal. All other requests or documentation for mitigating circumstances, including medical reasons, should be submitted directly to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has a F.A.Q. page that may provide further clarification.
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 website at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.