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VEAP Eligibility


The Post-Vietnam Veterans' Educational Assistance Program, or VEAP (chapter 32 of Title 38) was enacted by congress to give active duty military access to education and training. VEAP is a matching-funds program in which the government matches $2 for every $1 dollar a service member places in the fund.

To be eligible for VEAP you must meet the following criteria for eligibility:

  • Active duty service member entering the armed forces from 1/1/1977 to 6/30/1985
  • Not eligible for Vietnam Era GI Bill benefits
  • Contributions must have been made before April 1, 1987 and amount to at least three months of contributions for post-high-school programs and at least one month for high-school programs (GED classes)
  • The length of Active Duty (AD) depends on when and for how long you served on Active Duty:
    • Enlistment date before September 7, 1980 and Active Duty entrance before October 16, 1981: Active Duty requirement is 181 days
    • Enlistment date after September 7, 1980 and Active Duty entrance after October 16, 1981: Active duty requirement is 24 months
    Exceptions to these AD requirements include early-out hardship or a service-connected disability or a service-related disability that qualifies you to receive VA Disability Compensation. The AD length of duty is waived if you were called to a shorter period of duty or called off duty. Lastly, it is waived if you were called to duty after October 16, 1981 and have served at least 24 months of continuous Active Duty before that date because you already meet the AD requirement.
  • To be eligible for VEAP you must not have a dishonorable discharge
  • Certain types of Active Duty do not count as Active Duty service under VEAP. Excluded VEAP AD includes:
    • Assignment by the military to a civilian institution to take courses with other civilians
    • Time served at one of the Service Academies as a cadet or midshipman
    • Active Duty or training in the Reserves

You are eligible to receive VEAP benefits for 10 years after you are discharged or released from Active Duty. This 10-year period can be extended if you were called back to active duty for 90 days or longer and this 90-day period is subject to the same waivers that apply to the regular length of service requirement.

If you chose to upgrade your VEAP to the Montgomery GI Bill, you are no longer eligible to receive VEAP benefits. In some cases service members have paid into or are eligible for more than one military educational assistance program. If this is the case the benefits cannot be used simultaneously, but the service member is allowed to use the multiple benefits consecutively for a total of 48 months of assistance. In other words, if you plan it correctly you can receive assistance for all four years of college.

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