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How to Apply for and Maintain Your VA Education Benefits

GENERAL: The purpose of this section is to:

  • Assist you in processing your initial application for VA Educational Benefits and completing the actions required for enrollment certification.
  • Assist you in completing the administrative actions necessary to ensure you receive your monthly VA Educational payments.

The WSU Office of Veterans Affairs is committed to assisting you in achieving your educational goals at WSU.

Please feel free to contact us at 509-335-1234 or veterans@wsu.edu for assistance with all VA programs and WSU related inquiries.

STEP 1:

     Determine what VA Educational benefit Program (i.e. "Chapter") you are eligible for.

STEP 2:

     Decide on a specific program of study and officially apply to Washington State University. If you have less than 60 cumulative semester credit hours you may enter your program of study as "Undecided" in the VA Forms noted below. If you have 60 or greater cumulative credits, or you are applying as a graduate student, you must enter a specific program offered by WSU.

NOTE: The WSU VA Office will only certify enrollment in classes that are required to obtain a degree in your specific program of study. If for example you choose Mechanical Engineering as your program of study and enroll in 12 credits, but 3 of the credits are not required for a Mechanical Engineering degree then you will be certified for 9 credits. This will result in a reduction in your monthly education benefit payments, and, if you are using the Post 9/11 GI Bill, a portion of your tuition will not be covered by the VA.

STEP 3:

FIRST TIME (NEW) APPLICANTS - (meet one, or more, of the criteria below):

     A. Applying for VA Educational Benefits for the first time.

     B. Switching from another GI Bill program to the Post 9/11 GI Bill.

     C. Transferring Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits to your dependents.

 

          1. Procedures for first time (new) applicants under the GI Bills - Chapters 33, 30 or 1606:

               a. If you are applying for Chapter 33 (Post 9/11 GI Bill) you can apply online via VONAPP (preferred method) or you can complete a hard copy VA Form 22-1990 (if using your own benefit) or a VA Form 22-1990e (if using a transferred Post 9/11 GI Bill) and fax or mail to the VA Regional Office in Muskogee, OK.

NOTE:  if you are transferring benefits to your dependents under the Post 9/11 GI Bill, you must first obtain Department of Defense (DOD) Approval before you submit the VA Form 22-1990e to the VA. To obtain DOD approval please visit Transfer of Entitlement (TEB).

               b. If you are applying for Chapters 30 or 1606 you can submit an application online via VONAPP or you can complete a hard copy VA Form 22-1990 and fax or mail to the VA Regional Office in Muskogee, OK.

         

        2. Procedures for first time (new) applicants under Chapter 35: You must complete the VA Form 22-5490 online at VONAPP or download the VA Form 22-5490 and mail it to the VA Regional Office in Muskogee, OK.  

RETURNING APPLICANTS - (meet one or more of the criteria below):

     A. Previously applied for GI Bill benefits and were approved by the VA.

     B. Received GI Bill previously benefits but not at WSU-Pullman.

     C. Approved for GI Bill benefits by the VA but have never used them.

           1. Procedure for returning applicants under a GI Bill - Chapter 33, 30, 32, 1606, 1607: You must complete the VA Form 22-1995 and mail, fax, or deliver the Form to the WSU VA Office. In addition to the VA Form 22-1995 please also provide a Certificate of Eligibility from the VA.

          2. Returning applicants under Chapter 35: You must complete the VA Form 22-5495 and mail, fax, or deliver the Form to the WSU VA Office. In addition to the VA Form 22-1995 please also provide a Certificate of Eligibility from the VA.

NOTE:  If you previously attended WSU-Pullman and received VA Educational Benefits, but your last date of attendance was more than a year ago, you need to submit a VA Form 22-1995 or 22-5495 (as applicable) to the WSU VA Office.

NOTE:  For enrollment certification purposes your class schedule will be evaluated against the program of study you selected on your original application (22-1990 / 22-5490) or the most recent copy of the 22-1995 / 22-5495 on file. It is your responsibility to notify the VA Coordinator of changes in program. Failure to do so will result in a delay of payments.

Applicants using Vocational Rehabilitation - Chapter 31:

                    1. Eligibility for Chapter 31 assistance is determined by the VA. For details on the application process please visit the VA's Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment website.

          2. Once approved to use Chapter 31, please provide the WSU Office of Veterans Affairs with your VA Counselor's contact information. We will need from them a form 22-1905.  This is a description of the terms of your use of the benefit.

 

STEP 4:

          1. You must complete an Enrollment Certification Request prior to the start of you first semester at WSU; as well as prior to each subsequent semester or term that you wish to use a VA benefit.  The Enrollment Certification Request must be signed by your academic advisor.  New students will have access to their advisor during their summer Alive! orientation session.  The Enrollment Certification Request needs to be returned to the WSU Office of Veterans Affairs, once completed.

NOTE: If you do not submit an Enrollment Certification Request the WSU VA Office will not certify your enrollment with the VA, and you will not receive your monthly educational benefit payment, or tuition payments as applicable based on your benefit.

 

STEP 5:

Provide the WSU Office of Veterans Affairs a copy of your Certificate of Eligibility.  If you are applying for a new benefit this will be mailed to you, from the VA, in response to you submitting the 22-1990, 22-1990e, or 22-5490, as described above.  If you previously used your education benefit this will be mailed to you in response to you submitting the 22-1995 or 22-5495, as described above.

NOTE: The WSU Office of Veterans Affairs will not report your enrollment to the VA prior to receiving a copy of your Certificate of Eligibility. 

NOTE: Please plan ahead.  It can take the VA 3 to 4 weeks or more to process your benefit application and mail the Certificate of Eligibility.  The VA will only provide the certificate via mail. Ensure that the address that you provide to the VA is a location that you will be at to receive mail 3 to 4 weeks from the time that you submit your application.

STEP 6:

As a veteran you may be eligible for a partial tuition waiver. For additional information please visit Tuition Waivers. Note that you may only use the veterans waiver for undergraduate or graduate work, but not both.

Recipients of the Survivor Education Assistance Program (Chapter 35) you may be eligible for a 100% tuition waiver. For additional information please visit Tuition Waivers.

NOTES:

  1. If you mail the documents directly to the VA Regional Office the mailing address is VA Regional Office, PO BOX 8888, Muskogee, OK 74402.
  2. The fax number to the VA Regional Office is 1-918-781-7863. (Preferred method).
  3. As noted above mail copies of all documents to the WSU VA Office at Office of Veterans Affairs, PO BOX 641035, Pullman, WA 99164-1035. The WSU VA Office is located in the WSU Veterans Center, Holland Library, Room 120BA.
  4. The fax to the WSU VA Office is 509-335-9429. The telephone number is 509-335-1234.
  5. The VA Regional Office will process your enrollment application in 6 - 8 weeks (all processing times are subject to change). They will send you an letter which which will outline your entitlements under the specific educational program in which you are enrolled. The letter is commonly referred to as a "Certificate of Eligibility".
  6. Once you are registered for classes and the class list is available through the WSU Information System, the WSU VA Office will certify your enrollment with the VA for those classes which apply towards your specific program of study. Please inform the WSU VA Office when you are registered for classes.
  7. You will receive your monthly education benefit payments only if your application has been approved by the VA Regional Office AND the WSU VA Office has certified your enrollment with the VA.
  8. If you are a Post 9/11 GI Bill recipient, the VA will pay your tuition approximately 5-9 weeks after the start of the term. WSU will not require you to pay tuition, but please note that WSU will apply all or part of your financial aid award to your outstanding tuition balance on the first day of the term, so please be prepared financially for that process. Once your tuiiton payment is made by the VA, any excess funds on your student account will be refunded to you.
  9. If you are a Post 9/11 GI Bill recipient and you are required to attend a mandatory orientation at WSU, ensure you request New Student Programs defer the mandatory orientation fee to your student accoutn so the VA will pay the fee.
  10. An excellent resource is the Department of Veterans Affairs Questions & Answers website. You can search archived Q&A or ask a question via email.