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Content provided by the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance
64.117 Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance

FEDERAL AGENCY:

VETERANS BENEFITS ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS

AUTHORIZATION:

Public Laws 86-236, 89-358, 90-631, 92-540, 93- 508, 94-502, 95-202, 96-466, 98-460, 101-237, 101-508, 102-127, 102-568, 103-446, 104-275, 105-114, 105-206, 106-117; 106-419 and 107-103; 38 U.S.C. 3510.
OBJECTIVES: Click here for help!
To provide partial support to those seeking to advance their education who are qualifying spouses, surviving spouses, or children of deceased or disabled veterans who, as a result of their military service, have a permanent and total (100 percent) service- connected disability, or of service personnel who have been listed for a total of more than 90 days as currently missing in action, or as currently prisoners of war.

TYPES OF ASSISTANCE:

Direct Payments for Specified Use.
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USES AND USE RESTRICTIONS:

Assistance is in the form of monthly payments for a period up to 45 months to be used for tuition, books, subsistence, etc. The spouse has 10 years from the date of the veteran's disability rating or the date of notification that the veteran had a permanent and total service-connected disability, or any date between the two, her or his choice. When the veteran dies while a permanent and total service-connected disability was in existence, the surviving spouse has 10 years from the date of death. In all other cases the surviving spouse has 10 years from the date of death or the date of notification that the death was service-connected, or any date between the two, her or his choice. In the case of a spouse of a serviceperson who has been listed for a total of more than 90 days as currently missing in action or as currently a prisoner of war, education must be completed within 10 years from the date the serviceperson was listed as missing in action or listed as a prisoner of war. In the case of a child, eligibility generally exists between ages 18 and 26. The marriage of a child will not bar benefits but the remarriage of a surviving spouse will cause a surviving spouse's benefits to terminate. Special assistance for the educationally disadvantaged is provided without charge to entitlement for spouses, surviving spouses, and children. Benefits may be paid for courses that prepare eligible persons to take college or graduate school entrance examinations. Benefits may also be paid for any test that is necessary for licensing and certification needed to enter, maintain, or advance into employment in certain civilian occupations.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS:

Applicant Eligibility:   Spouses, surviving spouses, and children between age 18 and 26 of veterans who died from service-connected disabilities, of living veterans whose service-connected disabilities are considered permanently and totally disabling, of those who died from any cause while such service-connected disabilities were in existence, of servicepersons who have been listed for a total of more than 90 days as currently missing in action, or as currently prisoners of war.

Beneficiary Eligibility:   Spouses, surviving spouses, and children of veterans who died or who are permanently and totally (100 percent) disabled due to military service. Also eligible are the spouses, surviving spouses and children of service persons who have been listed for a total of more than 90 days as currently missing in action, or currently prisoners of war, permanently and totally disabled or deceased veterans.

Credentials/Documentation:   Military discharge certificate, death certificate or official document verifying POW status or MIA status, marriage certificate, and birth certificate(s).

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APPLICATION AND AWARD PROCESS:
Pre-application Coordination:   None. This program is excluded from coverage E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure:   An application, VA Form 22-5490 for a child, spouse or surviving spouse may be obtained from any VA Regional Office and submitted to the appropriate VA Regional Processing Office.

Award Procedure:   Awards are authorized at the regional processing office.

Deadlines:   None, but the period of eligibility for a spouse generally extends no later than the 10 years from the date the veteran was notified of the service-connected total (100%) and permanent disability, or from the date the serviceperson was listed for a total of more than 90 days as currently missing in action or listed as a prisoner of war. The period of eligibility for a surviving spouse generally extends no later than 10 years from the date VA notifies the surviving spouse that the death was service-connected.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time:   At least 59.2 percent of applications are processed within 90 days or less.

Appeals:   Appeals are available through a special board; response time is 220 days.

Renewals:   Generally, eligibility for a child terminates at age 26. In some instances, it may be extended. For example, in the case of service in the Armed Forces, eligibility will end 8 years after the first discharge or release from service; but in no event, beyond age 31.

ASSISTANCE CONSIDERATIONS:

Formula and Matching Requirements:   Not applicable.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance:   Not applicable.

POST ASSISTANCE REQUIREMENTS:

Reports:   Monthly certification of enrollment and pursuit for courses not leading to a college degree must be executed by the beneficiary. For college students, verification of pursuit is required near the end of the enrollment period.

Audits:   None.

Records:   None.

FINANCIAL INFORMATION:

Account Identification:   36-0137-0-1-702.

Obligations:   (Direct Payments) FY 01 $141,131,000; FY 02 est $179,043,000; and FY 03 est $191,287,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance:   Per month, institutional training: full time, $881; three-quarters time, $661; half-time, $439. Benefits may be paid for up to a maximum of 45 months. Tutorial assistance up to a maximum of $1,200. Work-Study Allowance: Payment based on the higher of the Federal minimum wage or the State minimum wage where work is performed.

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PROGRAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
In fiscal year 2001, there were 44,820 participants. Estimates for subsequent periods are: fiscal year 2002, 48,907 participants, and fiscal year 2003, 52,120 participants.

REGULATIONS, GUIDELINES, AND LITERATURE:

38 CFR 21.3001 - 21.3344; "Federal Benefits for Veterans and Dependents," VA Pamphlet 80-01-1, $5.00, available from Superintendent of Documents, P.O. Box 371954, Pittsburgh, PA 15250-7954. The stock number is: 051-000-0224-5.

INFORMATION CONTACTS:

Regional or Local Office:   See Appendix IV of the Catalog for Veterans Benefits Administration field offices.

Headquarters Office:   Department of Veterans Affairs, Central Office, Washington, DC 20420. Telephone: (202) 461-9800.

Web Site Address:  
http://www.GIBILL.va.gov

EXAMPLES OF FUNDED PROJECTS:

Not applicable.

CRITERIA FOR SELECTING PROPOSALS:

Not applicable.

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