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VEAP converts to GI Bill may lose benefits.

Soldiers who converted from the Veterans Educational Assistance Program (VEAP) to the Montgomery GI Bill are at risk of forfeiting their contributions and losing their benefits if they fail to make their payments.

Soldiers have 18 months from the time they signed the Montgomery GI Bill, Department of Defense Form 2366, to pay the mandatory contribution of $2,700.

Many of the 5,000 soldiers who signed up for the program may have already missed their deadlines, according to officials at the U.S. Total Army Personnel Command Program participants need to contact their finance offices and make sure the contribution will be paid within the 18-month deadline.

If soldiers are not able to pay the $2,700 in time by using monthly allotments, they have the option of combining the allotment with a lump sum, or they can make a single lump sum payment.

The law states that if participants don't pay the contribution in full within the allotted time, they forfeit anything they contributed to VEAP and will not be eligible for any education benefits through the Veterans Administration.

It is imperative that soldiers look at the date they signed their DD Form 2366 and make sure they have the contribution paid in full within 18 months of that date. To date, the VA has not made any exceptions to the deadline.

VEAP was first enacted by Congress for post Vietnam-era soldiers. It was designed to attract high quality men and women to the all-volunteer Armed Forces. Congress signed the VEAP conversion law on October 30, 2000, making it the second conversion opportunity since October 1996. (Submitted by Tesia Williams, PERSCOM Public Affairs Office.)
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Title Annotation:Veterans Educational Assistance Program; Infantry Career Notes
Publication:Infantry Magazine
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jun 22, 2002
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