FAQ

Benefit Enrollment

Do I need to do a benefit enrollment form each semester?

Yes.  All students using VA benefits to pay for school will need to submit their benefit enrollment form each semester. 

We suggest when you have completely registered for classes submit your enrollment form at the same time.  The sooner you complete your form the better.  This may avoid a lapse in your benefit. 

How many credit hours do I have to take to be considered a full-time student?

Summer

There are three summer terms:

  • Summer 1 (first 5 week session 5/18--6/24)
  • Summer 2 (second 5 week session 6/29-8/5)
  • and Full Summer (10 week session 5/18-8/5)

Undergrad

To be considerd full-time (and thus eligible to recieve 100% BAH while you are in classes), you must be taking either:

  • 7 credits for the full summer 10 week session or
  • 4 credits in Summer 1 and/or 2
    • If you take 4 credits in both Summer 1 and 2, please note:
      • the break between them will impact BAH by 5 days
        • If enrolled in Summer 1 & 2, once Summer 1 ends on 6/24, you will not be recieve BAH until the Summer 2 begins 6/29, so your July 1 BAH payment will be short for those days  (or appx. about $256)
  • Or you can take 3 credits (Summer 1) 3 credits (Full Summer) and 3 credits (Summer 2)
    • once Summer 1 ends on 6/24, you will not be full time until the Summer 2 begins 6/29, so your July 1 BAH payment will be short for those days  (or appx. about $50)

Graduate

To be considerd full-time (and thus eligible to recieve 100% BAH while you are in classes), you must be taking either:

  • 5 credits for the full summer 10 week session or
  • 3 credits in Summer 1 and/or 2
    • If you take 3 credits in both Summer 1 and 2, please note:
      • the break between them will impact BAH by 5 days
        • If enrolled in Summer 1 & 2, once Summer 1 ends on 6/24, you will not be recieve BAH until the Summer 2 begins 6/29, so your July 1 BAH payment will be short for those days  (or appx. about $256)
  • Or you can take 3 credits (Summer 1) 3 credits (Full Summer) and 3 credits (Summer 2)
    • once Summer 1 ends on 6/24, you will not be full time until the Summer 2 begins 6/29, so your July 1 BAH payment will be short for those days  (or appx. about $50)

Fall & Spring

Undergraduate

To be considerd full-time (and thus eligible to recieve 100% BAH), you must be taking 12 credit hours.

Graduate

To be considerd full-time (and thus eligible to recieve 100% BAH), you must be taking 9 credit hours.

How do I verify my monthly enrollment for educational benefits?

Everyone receiving MGIB-Active Duty (Chapter 30) benefits, as well as those in the Selected Reserve (Chapter 1606) and REAP (Chapter 1607), must verify their enrollment at the end each month to receive payment for that month. Your enrollment can be verified on the last calendar day of the month by using the Web Automated Verification of Enrollment (WAVE) or by calling the toll free Interactive Voice Response (IVR) telephone line at 1-877-823-2378.

My Certificate of Eligibility (CoE) has not arrived yet. What can I do?

If you are waiting for your physical copy of your CoE to arrive, you may upload your Statement of Benefits (sample below) until it does arrive.

I received an email saying there was an adjustment made on my account, what does that mean?

An adjustment means we have either adjusted their schedule to match what they are enrolled in, or we have submitted their tuition and fees to the VA.

Academics

Do I have to pay tuition and fees?

All students are responsible for tuition and fees at UNC Charlotte.

However, if you are using the Post 9/11 (Chapter 33) or Vocational Rehabilitation (Chapter 31) benefit, VA benefits will be paid to the University directly. Any amounts that VA benefits do not cover, the student is responsible for paying. Please note, if you are an out-of-state student using Post 9/11 benefits (100% eligibility), VA will cover the tuition and fees at the in-state rate (leaving the difference to be paid by the student).

Withdrawal Process

If you are looking to withdraw from a class please be aware of the semester deadlines to do so.

If you choose to withdraw from a class the process for notifying the Veteran Service Office is outlined below

  1. Please notify us through the Veterans Portal, Student Messaging.  This is critical if any of the following apply:
    1. You are moving from either full-time to part-time status as a result of the change or
    2. the class(es) are not a part of your degree plan

Once the office receives this information we will process your adjustment at that time.

Afterwards the VA will send you a debt letter, which will inform you of how much you will have to repay. The Veteran Service Office cannot calculate those payments.

PLEASE BE AWARE THAT YOU MAY BE RESPONSIBLE FOR REPAYMENT TO TUITION, FEES, BAH AND THE BOOK STIPEND.

We recommend you either come into our office or call the office to discuss your options and for further clarification

I got an e-mail from student accounts saying that tuition is due and I am using VA benefits to pay for my tuition, do I need to pay my tuition

Have you submitted your benefit enrollment form on our website?  If not please proceed and complete that process and we will get you certified and processed in the order in which we received. 

If you have submitted your form and are using Ch. 33 or 31 there will be a protective hold on your account.  Please disregard the emails, the VA will pay the tuition. 

If you are using other benefits you will need to make a payment arrangement in order to prevent your classes from being dropped (a payment plan is one option).

Are there any academic standards I must maintain to keep my VA educational benefits?

Undergraduate students will be terminated for VA purposes if their cumulative GPA is below a 2.0 for two consecutive terms. If a graduate student earns an Unsatisfactory grade, benefits will be terminated.

Do I need to be enrolled as a full time student to receive my monthly stipend?

No. The monthly stipend is based on a student’s enrollment status, which can range from full-time to less than half-time, depending on the number of credits taken. Please review the enrollment status breakdown and pay rates.

Post 9/11 students receive the monthly stipend as long as their enrollment status is 51% (for undergraduates in the fall and spring terms, this means enrolled in at least 7 credit hours; 5 hours for graduate students). Students at full time will receive 100% of the monthly stipend and those in fewer credits will receive a prorated amount based upon their rate of pursuit rounded to the nearest multiple of 10.

The monthly stipend for a full-time student using the Post 9/11 benefit at 100% eligibility is currently $1,632 a month.

Note: Those on active duty or the spouses of those on active duty receiving Transfer of Entitlement are not eligible for the monthly stipend. 

How long will it take for my classes to be sent to the VA?

 The VSO has 14 days from receipt of your enrollment form to process your form.  You will recieve a confirmation email from this office once your enrollment form has been completed and submitted and another once the VSO certifies you (it will contain your Certification ID number).  Additionally, you can see your certifications progress within the VSO via the Veterans Portal.

You will receive a final email (from VA-Once) that may be used as confirmation of receipt from the VA.

Can I take distance education courses and receive my monthly stipend?

Yes. However, if you are using Post 9/11 benefits, effective October 1, 2011- Individuals only enrolled in distance learning courses will be eligible for a monthly stipend equal to 50% of the national average. Rates will be multiplied by the rate of pursuit rounded to the nearest multiple of 10. 

As of August 1st, 2019, 50% of the national average for exclusively online training (No Classroom Instruction) is $894.50  To receive the full monthly stipend, a student needs to have at least one on-campus credit during the semester.

I received a Pell grant and/or student loans but the school used it for my tuition instead. Will the VA pay my tuition? Will I get my scholarships and grants?

Yes.  The VA will pay all your tuition and fees.  As soon as the VA has issued payment to the school you will receive a refund for any and all overage amounts.  This will include any grants and scholarships you have received unless those grants and scholarships are designated for tuition and fees only.

How do I get college credit for my military training?

In order to receive college credit for your military training you will need to submit a Joint Services Transcript (JST)  to the Office of the Registrar for evaluation of any applicable transfer credits.

Will VA pay me to retake a class?

VA will only pay you to retake a class in the event that your major requires that you make a certain grade in the class. VA will not pay you to retake a class just because you want a better grade. Before retaking a class, check the catalog for the course requirements.

General Questions

My account still shows a balance even though the Portal shows that I have been Certified/I received a letter from the VA saying I had been Certified but that the school had not submitted any tuition and fees for me. What does this mean?

The UNC Charlotte Veteran Services Office (VSO) has a two-part certification process.  Initially we certify credit hours but set tuition and fees at $0.  Subsequently we certify tuition and fees starting the day after add/drop ends.  Once that has been completed, then the VA will issue funds to the University on the student’s behalf (normally within 2-3 weeks).

We do this to expedite the certification process to ensure that our students are certified as soon as possible so that their BAH begins on time and so that they receive their book stipend in a timely manner.  Additionally, this approach greatly reduces the chance of errors that may lead to debt letters being issued by the VA against the student.

Because of this, student's accounts do show a "balance due" well into the term.  Even though those students will continue to get emails from the university saying they will be dropped from classes for non-payments, those using Chapter 33 have protective holds placed on their accounts so that they are not dropped from classes for not having paid their bill.

The only negative to this approach is it will impact those students that have additional scholarships, grant funds and/or student loans.  Because of the university’s “first in, first out” approach to billing, those funds (be they have additional scholarships, grant funds and/or student loans) will be applied to the student's account meaning that they will not receive any type of refund until AFTER the VA funds have arrived.

Who do I contact if I have questions concerning my veteran benefit payments, such as direct deposit, payment amounts, etc.?

Contact the Department of Veteran Affairs at 1-888-GIBILL (1-888-442-4551) or visit www.gibill.va.gov and go to Questions and Answers or go to your  Wave Account (If you have not set one up, be sure to do so). Wave is not available for students using Chapter 35, 33 and 31 Benefits.

How do I find out if I have any benefits left?

To find out how many months of entitlement you have left, you need to contact the Department of Veteran Affairs at 1-888-442-4551.

I called and no one would speak to me about my son, daughter/husband/wife’s benefits. They said they couldn’t! What is that about?

Student records (including grades, billing, etc.) fall under the Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).  The short definition is that all student records are protected and that they may only be released/discussed once guest access has been granted by the student.  Your student may grant this by submitting the attached form to our office via their campus email address to veteranservice@uncc.edu 

I am the spouse of an active duty service member. Am I entitled to VA benefits?

Please visit the MyCAA program to determine eligibility.

I'm required to get 'Enrollment Verification'; how do I do that?

Enrollment Verification can be received through the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at: https://ninercentral.uncc.edu/student-records-personal-information/enrollment-verification.

If, for some reason, you are unable to retrieve your information through the NSC, please contact the UNC Charlotte Office of the Registrar.

Military Benefits

Are my VA educational benefits taxable?

No, any Veterans' benefits paid under any law administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) should not be reported as income to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

I receive advance pay, when will my next check come?

Advance payment will pay you from the date the school term starts through the next month. Therefore, since VA back pays you by one month, you will not receive payment until the fourth month of the term.

For example: If you receive advance pay for the Fall semester, your check will come to the school in August. This check will pay you for the school days in August and the month of September. You will not receive payment again until November, for the month of October.

I am using Chapter 33 Post 9/11, when will I get my book stipend and where will my book stipend go?

You will receive your book stipend as a separate direct deposit.  In most cases it will come after the semester has started.  We suggest that you pay for your books in advance and use this as a reimbursement.  It will go to the account that you have set up direct deposit through the VA’s website.

The book stipend will pay out according to how many credit hours you are enrolled in at a rate of $41.67 per credit hour.  This will be split over the academic year and will max out at $1000.

I have submitted my benefit enrollment form, will I receive confirmation?

Yes.  If your form has been submitted properly you will receive three seperate emails.  One, an initial email from the VSO acknowledging receipt of your form.  Two, an email confirming the VSO has certified you (with your certification number included).  Three, an email confirmation from VA-Once with the number of credit hours you are enrolled in. 

If you have not received any of the first two, please log back into the Veterans Portal to see the current status of your certification.  The email from VA -Once should come after the second email from our office.

What do I need to do each semester once I register for my classes?

Complete and submit the Enrollment Form.

I did not get my BAH from the VA this month or it was not the full amount.

Have you submitted your benefits enrollment form on our website

If not, please proceed and complete that process and we will get you certified. 

If you have completed your form you can find your Cert ID in either the email you received from our office or you can get it by logging into the Veterans Portal and then call the VA at 1-888-442-4551 to get additional information.

As a reminder, BAH and stipends, are paid after the fact (like a paycheck, you only get paid after you work, the same is true with these benefits; you only receive them following days in class).  For example, if the semester starts on September 7 and ends on December 23, payments should post October 1, November 1, December 1 and January 1.   The October 1 and January 1 payments will be prorated to reflect the fact that you were not in school for the entire month that you are receiving funds for.

I have other health insurance will the GI Bill pay for student health insurance?

Yes, the GI bill will pay for student health insurance for those who are 100% eligible.  This is a great option for those students who are living on campus as well as those who are on campus regularly. On your enrollement form it will ask if you accept or waive. it.  This is where you will indicate if you want or do not want health insurace.  This will not affect any other health insurance.  Please understand that Tricare, Champ VA or VA health care is not accepted on campus.   

How long does it take to begin receiving benefits after they have been initiated?

Due to the increased volume of students using benefits, we cannot give an estimated time of when you will receive your payment after your certification is processed. It is imperative that you notify the Veteran Services Office about any changes that would affect your benefits.

Am I still eligible to receive financial aid if I am receiving VA educational benefits?

Yes! It is a common misconception that students receiving educational benefits are not eligible for financial aid. This is simply not true. You are eligible to apply for financial aid as any other student would. Even if you receive additional VA Vocational Rehabilitation (Ch 31) assistance, you may be eligible for financial aid. Check out the Financial Aid website for more information about applying for aid.