New GI Bill

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CyLaw
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby CyLaw » Sat Aug 08, 2009 1:37 am

Rotor,

Got your answer. Read http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2009/08/04/MN6M193TE9.DTL. They discuss how there was a change in California law where they now label the Education Fee as tuition for California. This is why there is ~250 per credit hour for tuition now. This is to cover the Education Fee. The other fee money is to cover all the other fees.

Edit: Paragraphs of import

California's history of charging public university students "fees" and not "tuition" had created confusion under the new GI Bill, which took effect Monday and bases its reimbursement for private or graduate school tuition on each state's undergraduate public school tuition.

Because California technically did not charge public students "tuition," the VA had originally concluded that nonpublic students could not receive any "tuition" reimbursement - even though most of the cost of private schools is called tuition, not fees.

In response, the University of California last month relabeled the money it charged for instruction "tuition" instead of "fees," which helped VA and California officials reach the agreement.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... z0NZDeAQTb
Last edited by CyLaw on Sat Aug 08, 2009 11:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Cole S. Law
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby Cole S. Law » Sat Aug 08, 2009 9:13 am

Rotor wrote:OK, now I'm really ticked...

CA's info rate last year fluctuated because of the way they calculate things (no "tuition" for residents but loads of fees, etc.) but it ultimately settled in around $6800/term. They were a little late posting CA numbers, but based on the 5 Aug update, it shows that CA will only get $2165/term in fees and $287/hour in tuition that won't get billed (thus not paid by VA).

To top it off, UCB's website shows UG fees of more than 4K per term-- it's not the 6800 they showed for planning, but it beats 2165.

First off, the legislation requires that fees be set at the highest UG rate for public universities in the state-- so how in the heck can they be any less than the ~4K that Berkeley is?

Second, if the planning factor was $6800 last year, and the Regents added 9.3% to fees this year, why is it not ~$7400?

OK, TLSers, I know you don't really have the answers to those questions-- they're rhetorical. Here's my question to you: who do I go to answer questions and verify what we should be getting? VA? The state? My school's finaid?

Thanks.


My school has a two person department that deals exclusively with veteran's issues (GI Bill, TA, etc.). Their department is called the "Veteran's Liason Office" and they're co-located with financial aid. Given the Berkley student body's antagonistic relationship with the military, they may not have a department with "Veteran" in the name. No need to give the protestors an easy target. Even so, I'm sure the VLO duties are a part of someone's job description.

EDIT: found these --LinkRemoved--

and this guy:

"Providing assistance to veterans, dependents of veterans, and reservists, this is the most important office to make certain that you receive VA educational benefits."

Michael Cooper
120 Sproul Hall
510.642.1592


Hope that helps.

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Rotor
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby Rotor » Sun Aug 09, 2009 12:25 am

Cy and Cole,

Thank you very much! My HHG is in transit and I've been trying to do all this on my phone, so searching hasn't really been much of an option. Thanks for making it easy.

Cy, you information at least puts me a little bit at ease-- even though it doesn't look like I'll get as much as I was expecting, at least it's closer than 2K!

Cole, thanks for digging up Mr. Cooper's name. I am planning on going to see him on Monday since he hasn't always been great about replying to email. He is a one man show for the Veterans' Affairs Office as far as I can tell. But at least "the V word" is in his job title :-)

CyLaw
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby CyLaw » Sun Aug 09, 2009 1:57 am

All, I just found this site that will calculate your GI Bill benefits depending on school and your answers to some questions.

http://www.newgibill.org/calculator

Also, they seem to have a lot of answers to some of the more common Gi Bill questions.

babyt8_99
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby babyt8_99 » Sun Aug 09, 2009 11:09 am

CyLaw wrote:All, I just found this site that will calculate your GI Bill benefits depending on school and your answers to some questions.

http://www.newgibill.org/calculator

Also, they seem to have a lot of answers to some of the more common Gi Bill questions.



Too bad the big question of when my LoE will arrive can't be answered!! LOL!!

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dapoetic1
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby dapoetic1 » Sun Aug 09, 2009 7:00 pm

Rotor wrote:OK, now I'm really ticked...

CA's info rate last year fluctuated because of the way they calculate things (no "tuition" for residents but loads of fees, etc.) but it ultimately settled in around $6800/term. They were a little late posting CA numbers, but based on the 5 Aug update, it shows that CA will only get $2165/term in fees and $287/hour in tuition that won't get billed (thus not paid by VA).

To top it off, UCB's website shows UG fees of more than 4K per term-- it's not the 6800 they showed for planning, but it beats 2165.

First off, the legislation requires that fees be set at the highest UG rate for public universities in the state-- so how in the heck can they be any less than the ~4K that Berkeley is?

Second, if the planning factor was $6800 last year, and the Regents added 9.3% to fees this year, why is it not ~$7400?

OK, TLSers, I know you don't really have the answers to those questions-- they're rhetorical. Here's my question to you: who do I go to answer questions and verify what we should be getting? VA? The state? My school's finaid?

Thanks.


Believe me...I understand your frustration. I think it boils down to the individual schools and the info they give to VA.Ultimately VA set the rules and gave each state pretty broad leeway. Some schools just don't get it --they think they're somehow doing the students a favor by submitting a lower cost of tuition and fees. But what they don't understand is the higher amount they say it cost the more we get. And in your case if they post no tuition at all you're screwed out of that not to mention if they fail to calculate the fees right and don't give you at least the max fees for the other school they're screwing you royally. I know I was able to call my VA rep at my school. She works in the registrar's office. She knew exactly how much VA was paying although she doesn't have the most accurate figures she was using the figure that was posted up until about a week ago (but otherwise she was spot on) and she knew exactly what was being paid to whom. Try to get in touch with your school's VA rep and ask why your fees aren't being calculated to match the max in your state. Doesn't this blow dealing with all of this just seconds before school starts? Yeah, that's rhetorical too.

ArmyVet07
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby ArmyVet07 » Sun Aug 09, 2009 7:15 pm

Teething problems were to be expected during the first year (especially the first few months) of a program as large as the New GI Bill. I hope things will be running more smoothly by next year. Does anyone have experience with using the (New) GI Bill as a PT student?

AndyB617
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby AndyB617 » Mon Aug 10, 2009 8:09 am

ArmyVet07 wrote:Teething problems were to be expected during the first year (especially the first few months) of a program as large as the New GI Bill. I hope things will be running more smoothly by next year. Does anyone have experience with using the (New) GI Bill as a PT student?


Armyvet, i'm in the process of using the new gi bill for PT law school. my school has not sent in my package to the VA yet, so obviously i haven't gotten paid yet but i think it's all going smoothly. they said they're a little backed up now (obviously) but we should see our money about 8-12 weeks or so after they receive our packages from our schools. the PT law school gets full BAH and benefits because it is considered 75% of full time. so that's pretty sweet. but i'll let you know if i run into any problems down the road. you just never know with the VA.

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mianbao
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby mianbao » Tue Aug 11, 2009 12:44 pm

Rotor -

I recommend getting in touch with Sarah Lopez in the main financial aid office at 510-643-8357. She is the Veterans Benefits POC for UC Berkeley Financial Aid. Michael Cooper is completely worthless for anything besides submitting your eligibility form to the VA. She told me that they will try to maximize the amount of benefits for grad students at about $5k per semester, whether or not we have to pay tuition. Thus, it looks like we'll be getting about $28k, which isn't as bad as I had originally thought.

law_mama
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby law_mama » Tue Aug 11, 2009 8:23 pm

I have no idea if this has already been mentioned, so forgive me if it has been addressed, BUT...Im not sure how accurate this information is, it came from my fin aid rep at my school, so I assume its fact.

I spoke to my fin aid person today at my school and she told me that Pres. Obama signed a law a few weeks ago that allows VA benefits to not be counted against financial aid. According to her, this means that (for example) if a person is getting a full tuition scholarship from their school and their tuition bill is $0, they will still get the GI Bill benefits, and the school will refund it to the student (your pocket).

You may want to check and see if this is true, but she claims it is a new law that was just signed.

if its true...yay for us :)

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Cole S. Law
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby Cole S. Law » Tue Aug 11, 2009 8:49 pm

law_mama wrote:I have no idea if this has already been mentioned, so forgive me if it has been addressed, BUT...Im not sure how accurate this information is, it came from my fin aid rep at my school, so I assume its fact.

I spoke to my fin aid person today at my school and she told me that Pres. Obama signed a law a few weeks ago that allows VA benefits to not be counted against financial aid. According to her, this means that (for example) if a person is getting a full tuition scholarship from their school and their tuition bill is $0, they will still get the GI Bill benefits, and the school will refund it to the student (your pocket).

You may want to check and see if this is true, but she claims it is a new law that was just signed.

if its true...yay for us :)


I'd love to pocket a couple of grand, but this kind of windfall seems unlikely.

CyLaw
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby CyLaw » Wed Aug 12, 2009 1:04 am

law_mama wrote:I have no idea if this has already been mentioned, so forgive me if it has been addressed, BUT...Im not sure how accurate this information is, it came from my fin aid rep at my school, so I assume its fact.

I spoke to my fin aid person today at my school and she told me that Pres. Obama signed a law a few weeks ago that allows VA benefits to not be counted against financial aid. According to her, this means that (for example) if a person is getting a full tuition scholarship from their school and their tuition bill is $0, they will still get the GI Bill benefits, and the school will refund it to the student (your pocket).

You may want to check and see if this is true, but she claims it is a new law that was just signed.

if its true...yay for us :)


Looked into this. This is due to H.R. 1777 passed in July. Here is the letter that the Federal Student Aid people at your schools should have received.

http://ifap.ed.gov/eannouncements/070209FederalVeteransEducationBenefits.html

Items of Imporatance

On July 1, 2009, President Obama signed H.R. 1777, a bill making technical corrections to the HEA. H.R. 1777 changes the effective date for the exclusion of veterans education benefits as EFA to July 1, 2009 (beginning with the 2009-2010 award year and thereafter). Therefore, institutions may not consider as EFA any Federal veterans education benefits, as defined in subsection (c) of section 480 of the HEA. This exclusion applies to all Federal veterans education benefits regardless of whether the benefits are received by the veteran, his or her spouse, or his or her dependent. As in the past, veterans education benefits are not considered as income in calculating the expected family contribution (EFC) for a student.

AndyB617
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby AndyB617 » Wed Aug 12, 2009 8:29 am

wow. that's crazy. i wonder if the yellow ribbon program falls under this law too. because when i spoke with my schools fin aid office and told them i was eligible for 100% gi bill and yellow ribbon, they said something to the effect of "we're going to see how this effects your financial aid." this was a while ago, so they might not have had all the facts. i guess we'll see though.

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Rotor
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby Rotor » Fri Aug 14, 2009 7:24 pm

mianbao wrote:Rotor -

I recommend getting in touch with Sarah Lopez in the main financial aid office at 510-643-8357. She is the Veterans Benefits POC for UC Berkeley Financial Aid. Michael Cooper is completely worthless for anything besides submitting your eligibility form to the VA. She told me that they will try to maximize the amount of benefits for grad students at about $5k per semester, whether or not we have to pay tuition. Thus, it looks like we'll be getting about $28k, which isn't as bad as I had originally thought.

Mianbao,

Thanks for the tip. I'd already come to that conclusion about Michael Cooper on my own, but it's nice to have a reliable contact. I talked with Dennis Tominaga (sp?) today and it sounds like the cumbersome VA bureaucracy interface with the cumbersome UC bureaucracy are working together now (just in the nick of time). For 16 credits * $287 / credit + the ~$2100, I'm hoping for ~$6,700 per term.

Now, let's watch the bureaucrats wrangle over the definition of credit versus hour to see how that works out :-)

Anybody get payment yet? Just wondering how long it takes from certification to VA paying the school.

Edit: For any Boalties out there, Dennis mentioned to me that they are looking into YRP for next year. No promises, but they are looking at it. This year's financial mess made jumping onto a new program "imprudent" (I think that's the word he used...).

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Boyk1182
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby Boyk1182 » Fri Aug 14, 2009 11:33 pm

Rotor wrote:Anybody get payment yet? Just wondering how long it takes from certification to VA paying the school.


I got certified last week, and they're backed up 6-8 weeks. That's for tuition payment, The VA couldn't tell me if the BAH would take that long or hit September 1. If the BAH takes longer, we'll get the appropriate backpay.

My school put a deferment on my tuition payment, so I have a zero balance, with the Ch. 33 payment listed with my financial aid. I had to bug a lot of people in a lot of different departments to get that to happen...

I just hope once this thing starts up, it will be smooth for the next 5 semesters!!

babyt8_99
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby babyt8_99 » Sat Aug 15, 2009 12:21 am

Boyk1182 wrote:
Rotor wrote:Anybody get payment yet? Just wondering how long it takes from certification to VA paying the school.


I got certified last week, and they're backed up 6-8 weeks. That's for tuition payment, The VA couldn't tell me if the BAH would take that long or hit September 1. If the BAH takes longer, we'll get the appropriate backpay.

My school put a deferment on my tuition payment, so I have a zero balance, with the Ch. 33 payment listed with my financial aid. I had to bug a lot of people in a lot of different departments to get that to happen...

I just hope once this thing starts up, it will be smooth for the next 5 semesters!!



My Bursars' Office said they'll do mine the same way. I will get my student loan money and they'll wait for the VA for the rest.

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dapoetic1
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby dapoetic1 » Sun Aug 16, 2009 11:08 am

My GI Bill definitely did not effect my fin. aid.
Basically once my GI Bill was applied I ended up getting the entire balance back because my tuition was already covered.
I'll actually be receiving active duty pay for at least another couple of months so I'm not too worried if the BAH doesn't catch up until Sept. but I hope that if your eligibility has been determined it would just be a matter of getting you your full benefit which would include the BAH

And after all the crap that I had to go through just to get my LoE it finally all worked itself out. My state tuition went up, and I've got a big fat check coming back. :D

LSATfromNC
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby LSATfromNC » Sun Aug 16, 2009 11:59 am

dapoetic1 wrote:My GI Bill definitely did not effect my fin. aid.
Basically once my GI Bill was applied I ended up getting the entire balance back because my tuition was already covered.
I'll actually be receiving active duty pay for at least another couple of months so I'm not too worried if the BAH doesn't catch up until Sept. but I hope that if your eligibility has been determined it would just be a matter of getting you your full benefit which would include the BAH

And after all the crap that I had to go through just to get my LoE it finally all worked itself out. My state tuition went up, and I've got a big fat check coming back. :D


So your saying your tuition was free prior to the GI Bill, and the 10k (approx) that GI Bill would pay for tuition is going in your pocket?

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dapoetic1
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby dapoetic1 » Sun Aug 16, 2009 1:52 pm

LSATfromNC wrote:
dapoetic1 wrote:My GI Bill definitely did not effect my fin. aid.
Basically once my GI Bill was applied I ended up getting the entire balance back because my tuition was already covered.
I'll actually be receiving active duty pay for at least another couple of months so I'm not too worried if the BAH doesn't catch up until Sept. but I hope that if your eligibility has been determined it would just be a matter of getting you your full benefit which would include the BAH

And after all the crap that I had to go through just to get my LoE it finally all worked itself out. My state tuition went up, and I've got a big fat check coming back. :D


So your saying your tuition was free prior to the GI Bill, and the 10k (approx) that GI Bill would pay for tuition is going in your pocket?


My tuition was paid already, and then when I took my letter of eligibility to the Vet's affairs they did all the paperwork and it credited about $7500 in tuition and $2k in fees but they just ended up as credits and I get to pick up the check next week. So yes..the GI Bill $$$ is going in my pocket.

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Cole S. Law
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby Cole S. Law » Sun Aug 23, 2009 4:06 pm

Has anyone been contacted about payment? I don't remember any providing any direct deposit info when applying. Should I be expecting a check in the mail for the "BAH" portion?

anthonyc7599
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby anthonyc7599 » Sun Aug 23, 2009 4:19 pm

Cole S. Law wrote:Has anyone been contacted about payment? I don't remember any providing any direct deposit info when applying. Should I be expecting a check in the mail for the "BAH" portion?


No contact yet, but direct deposit was an option on the online application. I actually forgot that I had done it. If you want it, I am sure you contact the VA to add it.

ArmyVet07
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Re: mjhyui

Postby ArmyVet07 » Sun Aug 23, 2009 10:53 pm

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Rotor
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby Rotor » Wed Aug 26, 2009 11:33 pm

Hi all. Don't know how far along your school is in certifying, but just so you know, once they do, you'll get an auto email from the VA saying your cert has been submitted with credit hour info etc. It then says payments will be first come first served for payment processing.

AndyB617
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby AndyB617 » Thu Aug 27, 2009 7:07 pm

sweet, thanks man!

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Zojirushi
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Re: New GI Bill

Postby Zojirushi » Thu Aug 27, 2009 7:39 pm

The email Rotor mentioned is sent when the school sends the certification to VA. It doesn't mean VA has done anything with it, and bee advised VA is at least 8 weeks behind on this stuff. I submitted my school's certs in early July, and as of yesterday morning, they had received them but not processed them.
Oh, and I lost $4000 in institutional grants when they saw VA was sending them a check for $12,300. :?




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