Q: Am I considered a veteran?
A: In order to be considered a veteran you must have served in one of the branches of the U.S. Armed Forces service and have been discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable.
Q: Why should we come to you instead of going to the VA?
A: We maintain close liaison with the VA, but we are unique in that we provide advocacy to the veteran community in federal, state and local benefit programs.
Q: What is a zero percent (0%) service-connected disability rating?
A: An injury or disease incurred in or aggravated by active military, naval or air service that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has determined to be service-connected, but not severe enough to be compensate. Less than 10 percent is non-compensable.
Q: What is the tuition fee waiver program?
A: It is a State educational program that is available for dependents and survivors of service-connected, disabled or deceased veterans, it allows them to attend State funded institutions of higher learning tuition free.
Q: My deceased spouse was a disabled veteran, am I eligible for the tuition fee waiver program?
A: Only if he was 100% service-connected disabled, or he died of a service-connected disability. You may also qualify if he died on active duty.
Q: I am eligible for educational benefits from the VA, can I still use the state tuition fee waiver program?
A: If you are a spouse or widow who has not remarried, you cannot use the programs concurrently. If you are a dependent/survivor child you may use both programs concurrently if you can meet the annual income limit, currently set at $7000 this includes any value of support received from a parent or family member.
Q I have been approved to receive a fee waiver. I have a letter from the V.A. stating this approval, what do I need to do with this letter in order to get my tuition fees waived?
A. After your County V.A. issues you a letter - Check with the VA Office to see if we have received the letter as well. If not, you may have to hand deliver a copy of your letter to the V.A. Coordinator.
Important Note: California law only requires the Cal-Vet Fee Waiver to apply to state mandated tuition/fees during the Fall and Spring semesters, which means that CCPE (who manage summer courses) is not mandated to honor this waiver since their course fees are self-support. For the past couple of summers, CCPE has honored the waiver so CSULB students using this waiver can pursue their studies without major interruptions. We are thankful to CCPE for extending this benefit and hope they continue to do so in future years.
Q. What are Dependent's Educational Assistance Benefits?
A. This program also known as Chapter 35, provides education benefits for the spouse and dependent children of veterans who are permanently and totally disabled from service connected causes, veterans who died in service or who died of service connected causes, and certain other veterans and serviceperson's, such as those currently missing in action or captured in the line of duty. This benefit may be used for pursuit of a college degree, courses leading to a certificate or diploma from business, technical or vocational schools, apprenticeship and on-the-job training programs. Benefits for correspondence courses are available to spouses only. The program provides up to 45 months of education or training.
Q. Who is Eligible for the Dependents and Survivors Educational Assistance Program-CH35?
A. This program provides financial aid for the education of a dependent or surviving son, daughter, or spouse of a veteran with a 100% permanent and total service-connected disability who dies from any cause, a service person missing in action or a veteran who is permanently and totally disabled as the result of a service-connected disability. The disability must arise out of active service in the Armed Forces.
Q. I am a new/transfer student; I have/have not received VA benefits before and would like to apply for benefits at this school. What should I do?
A. Come or our office or call to make an appointment. Our VA Coordinator will contact you with further information and instructions.
Q. I am adding/dropping classes and this will change my enrollment status that I filled out on the Veteran's Certification form, what should I do?
A. Changing status means to go from full to half time, VA to full time, or any other combination (full time is 12 or more units, time is 9-11 units, 1/2 time is 6-8 units). If you dropped from 16 to 12 units, which is still at full time, you do not need to do anything. If you added or dropped units that place you in a status other than you reported, you must fill out an Add/Drop form and submit it to the VA Office.
Q. I am changing my major. What do I need to fill out?
A. Fill out a "Request for Change of Program or Place of Training" form. If you are a veteran or a reservist, fill out VA form 22-1995. If you are a dependent of a veteran, fill out VA form 22-5495.
Q. How long does it take to get my check after I verify enrollment?
A. The quickest way to receive your payment is by using direct deposit. Your benefit can be deposited into your checking or savings account in 3 to 5 days. If you choose to have a check mailed (not recommended due to delays or losses, which can occur), you can expect payment in 10-14 days. If you are a Serviceperson, Veteran or a Reservist, your Direct Deposit can be started or updated by using the WAVE system.
Q. I am enrolled in school. When will I receive my benefits from VA?
A. If you are receiving benefits based on your status as a service person, veteran, or reservist you must verify your enrollment at the end of the month in order to receive benefits. Benefits are paid after each month of school is completed. Verification can be done beginning the last day of the month by using WAVE or by calling toll free 1-877-823-2378 and using your touch-tone phone. Both of these are available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. If you are receiving VEAP or dependents Educational Assistance (ch35), benefits are sent automatically at the end of the month.
Q. How do I find out if a particular school or program is approved?
A. The easiest way is to call the school, which is offering the training. Ask to speak with the person who handles veterans' certifications. You may also call 1-888-GI-BILL 1 (1-888-442-4551) and ask an education case manager. If the program is not approved you should contact the State Approving Agency (SAA) of the state in which the school is located. For a listing of all SAA's call 1-888-GI-BILL 1 (1-888-442-4551).
Q. What is the earliest date to verify my attendance in school?
A. The earliest you can verify your enrollment is the last calendar day of each month. Some things you can do to speed up your payments is to verify your enrollment promptly at the end of each month and sign up for direct deposit, if you have not already done so.