WHAT IT IS: Financial assistance that pays up to 45 months of educational benefits toward a VA-approved program for the spouse and children of an eligible service member. It may be used for GED, undergraduate or graduate degrees, certifications, apprenticeships and on-the-job training, correspondence courses and long distance training including programs related to business, vocational and technical instruction.
WHY IT’S NEEDED: Service members are often the primary breadwinners for their family, providing not just a roof over their heads but planning for the future as well. Given the dangerous nature of military work, the DEA was developed to help families prepare for their future if their loved one is lost.
HOW TO FIND A YELLOW RIBBON PARTICIPATING SCHOOL: Visit the GI Bill website.
GOOD TO KNOW: DEA benefits do not affect veteran’s disability benefits, death awards or military pension received as a spouse or surviving spouse. However, children‘s disability benefits will cease when DEA benefits begin. Disability allowances for dependent children continue until age 23 and DEA benefits can be used until 26 with possible extensions until 31.