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Office of Military and Veteran Services

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I Receive a VA Education Overpayment?

Overpayment of educational benefits occurs when you receive an incorrect benefit payment that is more than what you are entitled to receive. The educational benefits you receive are affected by any changes you make in your current registration including full-time/part-time status, cancellation, withdrawal, college/major, and academic standing (dismissal).

Standard of Progress

Once you begin receiving educational benefits, you are required to make satisfactory progress toward graduation. The following briefly describes some unacceptable standards of progress at UNO:

  • Drops/Withdrawals: The effective date of any dropped course or withdrawal from UNO is reported to the VA.
  • Repeated Courses: Each semester, the Veterans Affairs Office staff reviews your academic record for any repeated courses prior to certification. No repeated course may be certified for VA benefit payments if you previously received a satisfactory grade for the course. If you are repeating a course in which you initially received a grade of less than "C," this course will not be used as part of your regular enrollment unless your approved program requires a grade of "C" or better. In cases where a repeated course is discovered late, an adjustment will be made by UNO and proper notification will be made to the VA regional office. This adjustment may result in an overpayment and/or reduction of benefits.
  • Grades of "N," "I," and "NR": Courses with non-punitive grades are not used to complete graduation requirements. The VA requires UNO to report non-punitive grades received by veterans using educational benefits. If you receive a non-punitive grade in a course, that course will not be used in the calculation of UNO enrollment status for the term. When the reporting of these grades changes your status, any overpayments will be assessed against you. The following are non-punitive grades:
    • "N" = No Pass. "P" is interpreted to mean "C" or above. Grades of "N" are reported to the VA regional office immediately following the term the grade is received. NOTE: Veterans should give careful consideration before registering for courses on a Pass/No Pass basis.
    • "I" = Incomplete. The grade of "I" designates incomplete work in a course. The VA allows one year to remove an "I" and have a grade recorded. NOTE: Do not reregister for a course in which you have received an "I."
    • "NR" = No Report. The instructor did not report a grade for the course. The VA allows one year to remove an "NR" and have a grade recorded.
  • Academic Amnesty: If you file for academic amnesty for any semester covered by veteran's benefits, you will be required to pay back all benefits received for that semester. Academic amnesty can remove semesters from your transcript as if you have never taken them. Each college at UNO has their own rules and procedures for academic amnesty.
  • Academic Dismissal: UNO is required by law to report to the VA regional office any veteran or eligible person that is academically dismissed. These reports are made immediately following the term that you are academically dismissed. To have benefits reinstated, you must follow UNO procedures to be removed from dismissal. Upon readmission to UNO, please notify the Veterans Affairs Office and they will report this release to the VA regional office.
  • Change of Program: If you receive VA educational benefits and have accumulated sixty or more credit hours (earned at UNO, transfer credit, or a combination of both) you must officially declare a degree program and a major. Once a degree program and a major has been declared, it is important not to change. The VA allows ONE change of program without special approval. If you wish to change your program, you should visit the Veterans Affairs Office at UNO and ask for Change of Program paperwork.

How can you prevent overpayments

You can prevent problems with overpayments by promptly notifying the Office of Military and Veteran Services of any changes affecting your educational benefits including dropping or adding a course or otherwise changing your enrollment form full-time to part-time status; canceling or withdrawing from UNO for a term; receiving a grade that does not count toward graduation (e.g., No Pass, Incomplete, and No Report); applying for academic bankruptcy for a term; or changing your degree program and major. Remember, the sooner the VA is notified, the greater the possibility that an overpayment can be prevented.

How Do I Receive Advance Pay?

An eligible person may elect to be paid in advance for the initial month of enrollment or fraction thereof plus the amount payable for the following month. You should be aware that if you receive advance payments, for example, August and September at the beginning of a fall term commencing in August, you would not receive your October benefit check until 1 November. If you have an existing overpayment in your VA account, part or all of the advance payment may be applied to liquidate that debt.

Eligibility

Advance payment is dependent on the following requirements:

  • You must be certified for at least half-time enrollment. (6 hours for undergraduates, 4.5 hours for graduate students)
  • You must apply for advance pay 35 days prior to the school term start date.

NOTE: You can only request advance pay if you are not receiving break pay. Break pay is an interval payment you can receive for the interval or break between two school terms. In most cases, the VA will pay you for the break between two semesters, or summer sessions. If you want to know if you will be eligible for break pay contact the UNO Veterans Affairs Office.

If you meet the above criteria and want advance pay notify the UNO Veterans Affairs Office. When your check arrives the UNO Veterans Affairs Office will send you an email through the UNO website Lotus Notes. This email will notify you we have received your check for advance pay and it is waiting for you to pickup at the UNO Student Accounts Office. Any advance payment not picked up 30 days after classes begin will be returned to the US Treasury Department.

Am I Eligible for Tutorial Assistance?

Most eligible VA students who are experiencing difficulties in courses required for their program of study may be eligible for tutorial assistance. To be eligible, you must:

  • Be enrolled at least half time (6 hours for undergraduate students, 4.5 hours for graduate students)
  • Bring to the Veterans Affairs Office a letter from your advisor stating you have a verifiable need for tutorial assistance, that the course in question is required for graduation, the name, position, and address of your tutor and that this tutor is qualified to instruct you in the course work

The allowance for tutorial assistance cannot excel $100 per calendar month with a maximum assistance of $1200. Any tutorial assistance paid in excel of $600 will be taken from your entitlement.

How do I Make Monthly Verifications?

If you are Chapter 30, 1606, 1607, 32 or 34/30 you must make monthly verifications affirming you are still attending your coursework. This can be accomplished in one of two ways. On the last day of each month you are in school:

  1. First way:
    • Connect to the VA's Internet website at www.gibill.va.gov and follow the link to the Web Automated Verification of Enrollment (WAVE) program. Enter your first and last name in the appropriate blocks, your Social Security Number (minus the dashes) and your password. The first time you use the WAVE use your last 6 digits of your SSAN. Once you enter into the WAVE it will prompt you for a new password.
    • Click on the link Verify Monthly Enrollment Status. Check to see you registration status:
      • For Undergraduate Students:
        Full time is 12 hours or more
        3/4 time is 11 to 9 hours
        1/2 time is 8 to 6 hours
        1/4 time is 5 to 1 hours
      • For Graduate Students:
        Full time is 9 hours or more
        3/4 time is 8 to 6 hours
        1/2 time is 5 to 4.5 hours
        Less than 1/2 and more than 1/4 time is 4.5 to 3 hours
        1/4 or less time is 2 to 1 hour
    • Note 1: The UNO Veterans Affairs Office will not change your hours if you still fall within a certain time area. (For example: if you are 3/4 time at 10 hours and drop a 1 hour class we will not make a change to St. Louis because you are still 3/4 time.)
    • Note 2: If the WAVE has you listed as a full time student and you are really 3/4 time DO NOT MAKE CHANGES-DO NOT VERIFY. Contact the UNO Veterans Affairs Office. If you make changes on the WAVE they will stop your payments.
    • The WAVE offers many options for changing information such as password, email address, and direct deposit information. If you use the email option be sure you keep your email address up-to-date.
  2. The second way to verify is by telephone. If you enrollment has not changed during the month call 1-877-823-2378 on a touch-tone phone.

What is Top-Up?

The VA has a program for people on active duty to use their GI Bill in conjunction with tuition assistance. The program "Top-Up" allows the VA to pay you the difference between the total course cost and the cost covered my your service department, up to the maximum rate we would pay a veteran.

For example, if you were enrolled in a one-month course that was considered full time and the total course cost was $1500, and the military was paying $1000, we could pay the difference, $500. We could pay that amount because the $500 is less than the maximum rate payable to a veteran, $900. If the same course was $1500 and the service department was only paying $100, the most the VA could pay would be $900, the maximum rate payable to the vet. We pay whichever one is less.

If you are getting 100% TA for a class, you would not be eligible for Top-Up for that class.

Keep in mind the VA looks at the figures on the approved application for TA to determine the amount paid by the service member. If there is a lab fee not reported on the TA Form, the VA cannot pay for that. We can only pay the difference between the total course cost and the cost paid by service department (up to the maximum amount payable to a veteran) as reported on the TA Form.

If you have never applied for the GI Bill, you will have to apply for the GI Bill to use Top-up. You can download the application VA Form 22-1990, complete and take to your Base Education Office. Tell them this is to use your TOP-UP benefits.

Top-Up does reduce your GI Bill entitlement. At current GI bill rates, for each $1004.00 we pay you in Top-Up, we will take away one month of full time benefits. You start the GI Bill with 36 months of full time benefits.

What happens if I do not maintain Satisfactory Attendance, Conduct and/or Progress?

Once you start receiving benefits, failure to maintain satisfactory attendance, conduct, progress, or have an excessive number of withdrawals the certifying official at the Office of Military and Veteran Services will notify the VA and place a hold on your ability to register for classes. In order to get the hold removed you must pick up the Probation or Academic Suspension Worksheet and complete the following paperwork:

  • Complete VA Form 22-8873, Supplemental Information for Change of Program or Reenrollment After Unsatisfactory Attendance, Conduct, or Progress-Part II
  • Take VA Advisor Letter to your College and give to your academic advisor

Once we receive a letter from your advisor verifying they conducted a counseling session with you and the VA Form 22-8873 the registration hold will be removed from your records.

I Have Run Out of Benefits--Can I Ask For An Extension?

The VA can extend entitlement to the end of a term, quarter, or semester if the ending date of your entitlement falls within a term, quarter, or semester. You must do the following:

  • Bring the VA letter stating when your benefits will expire to the UNO Veterans Affairs Office. This is usually on the last letter you received from the VA giving you your monthly stipend rates for the current semester you are attending.
  • Complete VA Form 21-4138, Statement of Claim requesting an extension of your Educational Benefits until the end of the semester you benefits will expire in. For example, if your benefits expire on 12 September you may ask for benefits until the end of the Fall Semester.

The Office of Military and Veteran Services will then send your VA letter and statement of claim along with a copy of the semester's dates and courses you are enrolled in.

You should receive a new benefit letter from the VA Regional Office in St. Louis in a few weeks. Please bring the Office of Military and Veteran Services a copy of this letter.

Can I Receive Benefits for an Audit or Credit/No Credit Courses?

  • Students receiving veteran's educational benefits may not receive benefits for Audited courses.
  • Students receiving veteran's educational benefits and wishing to take courses on a Credit/No Credit basis MUST stop by the Office of Military and Veteran Services (located in 117 EAB) to meet with a VA representative to determine their eligibility. Eligibility is determined on a case-by-case basis, and may require written permission from an academic advisor prior to being approved for such courses. A loose guideline for determining your eligibility in these courses is to simply ask yourself, "Does this course directly apply to my program/major course of study?"

Frequently Used Telephone Numbers, Addresses, Email Addresses, and Websites