There are two main GI Bill programs offering education assistance to survivors and dependents of Veterans:
You may be eligible for more than one of these programs. In most situations, you will be required to make an irrevocable election between the DEA program and Fry Scholarship when you apply. Beneficiaries are not able to use the same qualifying event for more than one benefit unless you are a child of a Servicemember that died in the line of duty prior to August 1, 2011.
The chart below was developed to assist surviving spouses making a decision between the two programs.
Comparison Chart for Surviving Spouses with both DEA and Fry Scholarship Eligibility
|Benefit Payments||Monthly amount paid directly to the student. The current monthly payment for full-time training is $1,224.00||
Tuition & Fee Payment (Paid to School) - Full in-state tuition costs covered for training pursued at public institutions. Up to $23,671.94 per year at private institutions
Books and Supplies Stipend (Paid to Student) - Up to $1,000 a year for books and supplies. Paid to the student proportionately for each term.
Monthly Housing Allowance (Paid to Student) - Stipend based on local BAH for E-5 with dependents and paid monthly. Online students receive half of the BAH national average
|Duration of Benefits||
Surviving Spouses of those who died in the line of duty may use benefits for up to 20 years from the Servicemember's date of death.
15 years from the Servicemember's date of death (or, in accordance with Section 401 of Public Law 114-315, if the death of death is prior to January 1, 2006, then benefits are extended until January 1, 2021)
|Maximum Months of Benefits||45 months||36 months|
|Concurrent Receipt of DIC and Education Benefit for Spouse||Yes||
Veterans Crisis Line:
1-800-273-8255 (Press 1)
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs | 810 Vermont Avenue, NW Washington DC 20420
Last updated May 16, 2018