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Veterans Services

Benefit Payment Information

Benefit Payment Information

Payment Information

PAYMENTS

Benefit payments are made directly to students. The payment is made to the student for the exact number of days the student is certified for the month. If a student is certified for a whole month, the full monthly benefit is paid. If the student is only certified for part of the month, the benefit is prorated.

Payment usually comes between the 1st and 15th of each month and is paid for the previous month. The VA does not consider a payment as being late until after the 10th of the month. Inquiries should be made directly with the VA at 1-888-442-4551.

Your GI Bill money is tax free. It is not declarable for income tax purposes (non-taxable income). However, benefits are taken into consideration when applying for any financial aid assistance.

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VETERAN'S RESPONSIBILITIES TO ENSURE A CORRECT AND TIMELY PAYMENT

  1. Establish a direct deposit account with the VA.
  2. Submit your Request for Certification form to the Veterans Services Office in Admissions and Records as soon as you've registered for classes. Any delay in submission will cause a delay in your payment.
  3. Attend classes.
  4. Self-verify at the end of each month (for all chapters except 33, 35 and 31).
  5. Notify our office of any changes to your class schedule or personal information.
  6. Remember to carefully read anything the VA sends you. This can help to eliminate any problems with pay.

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RETROACTIVE BENEFITS

VA benefits can be paid for enrollments up to one year before the date VA receives a student's application. The date stamp put on the student's application determines the one year date.

Chapter 35 retroactive benefits may be handled differently and may exceed one year. Students should contact the VA directly for information about this option.

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MONTHLY SELF-VERIFICATION OF ENROLLMENT

Students who receive benefits under Chapters 30, 1606 or 1607 must verify their enrollment each month (students under Chapters 31, 33, or 35 do NOT self-certify). These students will receive an award letter from the VA Regional Processing Center in Muskogee, OK. Once this is received, the student can self-certify. The earliest this can be done is the last day of the month. Monthly verification (self-certification) can be done via one of the following ways:

Telephone - Using Interactive Voice Response (IVR): 1-877-823-2378
Internet - WAVE (Web Automated Verification of Enrollment): https://www.gibill.va.gov/wave

Failure to self-certify will cause your benefits to stop. You must do this every month or you will not get paid! Federal holidays may delay receipt of the Student Verification of Enrollment and/or your check.

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CHANGE OF ADDRESS AND DIRECT DEPOSIT

Direct deposit of VA educational benefits payments is now available for Chapter 30, 33, 1606 and 1607 recipients. This program speeds up education and work study payments. It also decreases the chance of missing, lost, or stolen checks. Students may request direct deposit by calling the VA at 1-888-442-4551.

The VA will require students to provide their VA file number, 9-digit bank routing number, and checking/savings account number. Students must keep their address current. Even if a student has direct deposit, the student still needs to keep his or her address current because all other correspondence including award letters are mailed to the student's address. The fastest way to change an address is to call the VA at 1-888-442-4551.

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BENEFIT RATES OF PAY

CHAPTERS 30, 35, 1606, and 1607:
The rate of pay depends on the number of units that are certified (required classes on your VA educational plan) as shown below:

Full Time

3/4 Time

1/2 Time

Fall/Spring

12.0+

9.0-11.5

6.0-8.5

Summer 8-week

6.0+

4.0-5.5

3.0-3.5

Summer 6-week

4.0+

3.0-3.5

2.0-2.5

Students enrolled less than 1/2 time will only receive tuition and fees.

Students are paid at a monthly rate set by the Department of Veteran Affairs, which can be found on their website at www.gibill.va.gov.

CHAPTER 33 rate of pursuit
Chapter 33 benefits are paid by rate of pursuit - not the number of units enrolled (like the other chapters). Eligible veterans receive a percentage of the benefit for tuition and fees, monthly housing allowance, and book stipend based on the months of active duty service after 9/10/01. Effective August 1, 2011, the monthly housing allowance will be prorated by the student's rate of pursuit (rounded to the nearest tenth). For example, a student training at a rate of pursuit of 75% (9 units) would receive 80% of the BAH rate.

Tuition and fees - payment is made directly to CRC by the VA on behalf of the veteran. This can be a lengthy process. To avoid being dropped for nonpayment by the Los Rios District, the veterans should submit their VA paperwork to the college immediately after enrolling in classes. The Veterans Services Office can then place a Do Not Drop indicator on their records, so they are not dropped for nonpayment. If veterans pay their own fees, they can apply for a refund after the VA payments are made and applied to their accounts.

Housing allowance (BAH) - a monthly housing allowance is paid directly to the student at the start of each month for the previous month. It is based on the DOD's Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) for an E-5 with dependent and the zip code of the school. You can find the BAH rates at http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/perdiem/bah.html.

Chapter 33 rates are as follows:
Fall or spring semesters -
12 units 100% of BAH
11 units   90% of BAH
10 units   80% of BAH
9 units     80% of BAH
8 units     70% of BAH
7 units     60% of BAH
Summer 8 week session -
6 units     100% of BAH
5 units      80% of BAH
4 units      60% of BAH
Summer 6 week session-
4 units      100% of BAH
3 units       70% of BAH

Books and supplies stipend - Paid directly to the student when the school's enrollment certification has been processed. The stipend pays $41.67 per unit certified - up to a maximum of $1000 per academic year.

Entitlement - Veterans are generally entitled to 36 months of benefits.  Rate of Pursuit determines the number of months deducted from the entitlement for the length of the semester.  VA calculates the Rate of Pursuit by dividing the number of certified units by the number of units considered to be full-time by the school. In the case of CRC, 12 units is considered full-time - 7 certified units is 58% of a month deducted from the 36 months of entitlement (remember the rate of pursuit must be over 50%).

Students are paid at a monthly rate set by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Rates can be found on their website at www.gibill.va.gov.

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HOW ENTITLEMENT IS CHARGED

Chapter 30 - 35 - 1606 - 1607
Full-time: One day charged one day of entitlement
Part-time: Applicable percentage charged, i.e., 3/4, 1/2

Chapter 33
Full-time: One day for each day of the certified enrollment period
Part-time: A percentage of a day for each day of the certified enrollment period, i.e., 58%

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PROBLEMS WITH PAYMENTS

Contact the Department of Veterans Affairs at 1-888-GIBILL (1-888-442-4551) or visit www.gibill.va.gov and go to 1.) Questions and Answers or 2.) Go to your Wave Account (If you have not set one up, be sure to do so).

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ADVANCE PAYMENT

If you are a first time student using GI Bill benefits or have used the benefits before and have been out of school for a semester, you can request Advance Pay. We accept requests for Advance Pay 60 to 90 days prior to the beginning of the semester. The check would contain the first partial month and the next full month of attendance. It will be sent to the college and the Veterans Services Office staff will check to see that you are still enrolled in your classes before releasing it to you. The VA will then send your next check to you at the beginning of the fourth month of attendance since you have already been paid for the first two. Remember, the VA normally pays you after you have attended for the month.

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INTERVAL PAY

An "interval" is the period of time between regularly scheduled terms or other periods of instruction. Due to changes in the GI Bill on Aug. 1, 2011, the VA will no longer permit interval pay for all VA Educational benefit chapters.

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ROUND OUT DURING FINAL SEMESTER

During a student's final term only, if at least one course meets a requirement listed on the student's VA Educational Planner, all additional courses taken that term may be certified regardless of whether the courses are required or not.

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