How to best use your educational benefits

After applying for and confirming your benefits, explore how your benefits will arrive. 


Then understand how you can use your benefits to pay for your tuition, books, housing, and more.

How benefits are delivered

Direct deposit


You’ll receive payment into your bank account 7 to 10 business days after you verify your school enrollment. This is also known as Electronic Funds Transfer or EFT.

This is the fastest way to receive your payment.

Payment by check


If you asked for a waiver to receive your payments by check, you should receive your first check by mail about 14 days after you verify your school enrollment.

To check on the status: call 888-GIBILL-1 (888-442-4551) to receive an automated update or speak to a claims specialist.

News update

Receiving benefits

Red, white and blue lights illuminate the exterior of the Memorial Union at the University of Wisconsin-Madison

There are many things that affect when you receive your benefits. Most importantly, your school must submit your enrollment to VA for processing to begin.

In general, it takes about a month to process an original claim, and about a week for a re-enrollment.

Get additional details on the timing of payments. The VA issues payments after each month’s classes. For example, you’ll get the payment for November classes in December.

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Post 9/11 GI Bill® (Chapter 33), Veteran Readiness and Employment (VR&E, Chapter 31) and The Fry Scholarship

This benefit covers:

1. Tuition and fees directly to the school.
2. Money for books to you at the beginning of the term.
3. Housing allowance to you at the end of each month.

Post-9/11 GI Bill® (Chapter 33) and the Fry Scholarship current rates

Tuition will be paid directly to the school. The book stipend will be paid directly to you, ideally early in the semester.

You must be enrolled more than 50% to receive the housing stipend. This will be paid directly to you on the first day of the following month (example: September’s payment should arrive on October 1st). You only receive the stipend during the months you are taking classes, and the payment will be prorated for partial months (most commonly May, December, and January).  If there is a delay in the VA processing your certification, you will receive back-pay to the beginning of the term.

Dependents Educational Assistance (DEA or Chapter 35).

Your stipend will be paid directly to you on the first day of the following month (example: September’s payment should arrive on October 1st). You only receive the stipend during the months you are taking classes, and the payment will be prorated for partial months (most commonly May, December, and January).  If there is a delay in the VA processing your certification, you will receive back-pay to the beginning of the term.

DEA benefit current payment rates

The Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance (Chapter 35) program offers up to 36 months of education benefits to dependents of veterans with a 100% service-connected disability rating, who died while on active duty, or who died as a result of a service-related condition. A child may generally use the benefit until the age of 26 except in certain cases.

Montgomery GI Bill - Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR, Chapter 1606).

Before you can receive your monthly stipend, you must verify your enrollment in WAVE (or 877-823-2378). This should be done at the end of each month. The certification we send usually counts as the first verification, so don’t be alarmed if you receive a “your enrollment has already been verified” message.

MGIB-SR benefit current rates

Your stipend will be paid directly to you on the first day of the following month (example: September’s payment should arrive on October 1st). You only receive the stipend during the months you are taking classes, and the payment will be prorated for partial months (most commonly May, December, and January).  If there is a delay in the VA processing your certification, you will receive back-pay to the beginning of the term.

Montgomery GI Bill - Active Duty (MGIB-AD, Chapter 30).

Before you can receive your monthly stipend, you must verify your enrollment in WAVE (or 877-823-2378). This should be done at the end of each month. The certification we send usually counts as the first verification, so don’t be alarmed if you receive a “your enrollment has already been verified” message.

Payment is limited to reimbursement of tuition and fees for the training taken by trainees on active duty.

MGIB-AD benefit current rates

Your stipend will be paid directly to you on the first day of the following month (example: September’s payment should arrive on October 1st). You only receive the stipend during the months you are taking classes, and the payment will be prorated for partial months (most commonly May, December, and January).  If there is a delay in the VA processing your certification, you will receive back-pay to the beginning of the term.

Non-Standard Term (i.e. Summer).

If you’re taking summer classes or classes shorter than 16 weeks, you can still receive a housing stipend.

The VA will calculate whether you’re a full-time student, not us. They use this equation for a non-standard semester: Credit × 18 ÷ weeks = credit hour equivalents. When enrollment periods overlap, credit hour equivalents for the period of overlap are combined.

Example: 4 semester credits earned in 4 weeks is the equivalent of 18 credits earned during a standard semester (4 × 18 ÷ 4 = 18) and will pay full-time for 4 weeks.

Wisconsin education benefits

Wisconsin GI Bill


This will cover standard tuition AND segregated fees.

What is covered and what isn’t

Wisconsin National Guard Grant


This will only reimburse you the cost of in-state tuition. It does NOT cover segregated fees, but it will cover school differentials (i.e. Engineering and Business).

A new application form must be submitted every semester.

Manage your Veterans Administration (VA) Debt


Check the status of debt related to VA or education benefits, make payments, or request help.

How to manage your VA debt

Benefit balance


Your GI Bill Statement of Benefits will show you how much of your benefits you’ve used, and how much you have left to use.

View your GI Bill Statement of Benefits

Contact

University Veteran Services
school certifying officials

Call us at:
608-265-4628

Email us at:
veterans@wisc.edu

Location pin for University Veterans ServicesUniversity Veterans Services
333 East Campus Mall
10th floor, Suite 10320
Madison, WI 53715


Monday - Friday
9:00am - 4:00pm

Appointments

Drop-ins are always welcome, but appointments are encouraged.

Current students can make an appointment using Starfish.