Rounds, Blumenthal Introduce Legislation to Provide Flexibility Regarding Post-9/11 GI Bill Benefits for Family Members
WASHINGTON—U.S. Sens. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), members of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, today introduced bipartisan legislation to allow more flexibility in allocating Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to survivors of service members. The bipartisan Increasing Transferability of Entitlement to Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Act of 2017 would allow survivors of deceased service members, who had Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits transferred to them, to reallocate those benefits to other designated survivors.
“The decision to serve our country in the military affects more than just the service member; their entire family makes sacrifices as well,” said Rounds. “Providing our military families with the flexibility to manage their Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits after losing a loved one is but one small step we can take to show them our gratitude and appreciation. While our service men and women and their families can never be fully repaid for the sacrifices they make to defend our freedoms, the Increasing Transferability of Entitlement to Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Act is but one reform that can make their lives a little easier. I thank Senator Blumenthal for his leadership and I look forward to working with him to move this bill forward.”
"Through their service and sacrifice, veterans have earned our full commitment to support them with effective education benefits that enable their swift success in the workplace,” said Blumenthal. “I'm proud to join with Senator Rounds to introduce the Increasing Transferability of Entitlement to Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Act of 2017 to ensure survivors of deceased service members will be able to fully obtain and reallocate the education benefits earned through their family members’ service and sacrifice for our country."
Currently, if a service member transfers their Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to his or her family while alive and subsequently passes away, no change in the number of months of the benefit amount allotted to each family member can be made. If the service member or veteran was still living, they could adjust the number of months allotted to each family member at will. Under the Increasing Transferability of Entitlement to Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Act, a survivor with a Post-9/11 GI Bill benefit would be authorized to determine if and how many months would be transferred to other designated survivors. This legislation will only impact those already designated to receive education benefits. No new transferees could be added.
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