post 911 or voc rehab? confused

Discussion in 'VA Benefits' started by italianguy4, Oct 17, 2012.

  1. italianguy4

    italianguy4 PEB Forum Veteran

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    hey guys, i am on pdrl 30% and rated by the va 70% TDIU. i want to try and get my going being i am only 22 years old. i want to try and go to school so i have been calling va reps and what not asking questions on voc rehab and post 911 and all its details. generally what i got from everything is that voc rehab is a special program for disabled vets only, and it doesnt differ much from post 911. you get full tuition for a degree of your choice for 48 months plus the monthly gi bill payment as of august 2011. i cant decide which i would like to do and which would be better. i see most leaning towards the post 911 now a days, but voc rehab looks like a good program for disabled vets and doesnt differ much from post 911. i was told by the voc rehab office that you can actually use the post 911 for the full 36 months, and then use voc rehab afterward. is this true? anyone have any experience with doing that? any advice on which to apply for is greatly appreciated. i am not the best decision maker. thanks everyone.
     
  2. SGT B

    SGT B PEB Forum Regular Member

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    VOC REHAB is better...same benefits but you will get your monthly housing stipend if you qualify for Post 9/11 GI Bill and you will get 48 months instead of the 36 for the Post 9/11. You can't use them at the same time because they come from the same pot. So if you use your GI bill it will take away from your VOC Rehab and vice versa. So if you used 24 months of your GI bill you will still have 24 months left with VOC Rehab and if you used 24 months VOC Rehab you will only have 12 months of your GI bill left. Essentially Voc Rehab is better from my understanding because not only will you get 48 months of benefits but you will have a counselor to help you along the way with deciding what it is you would like to do, figuring out if you will need remedial courses, they let you know what the job market is and future of the market you are looking into and they also help with resumes' and the job search once your schooling is over with. With the GI Bill you figure out everything on your own. Seeing as how you're not the best decision maker Voc Rehab may be best for you. Good luck and I hope I helped!
     
  3. italianguy4

    italianguy4 PEB Forum Veteran

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    yes sgt thank you, you helped alot. a vfw rep told me today, to apply online for the post 911 benefits FIRST and then depending how that goes, i could always apply for voc rehab after. i do like the idea of voc rehab, but i hear mixed things. alot of people say the new post 911 is better, but then i am told they are essentially the same thing. what i dont understand is should i apply for post 911 to see if i get granted 100 percent eligibility? then at least i know. then from there i can apply for voc rehab if that is what i decide?
     
  4. pittpan2005

    pittpan2005 PEB Forum Veteran

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    You should apply for both at the same time. That way you can start on one program and switch to the other if you choose. The key difference is vocation rehab is designed to get you back to work. They don't have to approve education. They could decide a degree is not the best course of action for you. They might also decide that a degree is the best course of action. Do some research and you'll see "success" stems from how well you support your vocational rehab plan. Also, 48 months isn't the max. It can be extended. What's nice about vocational rehab is they can provide extra benefits like tutoring services, computers, special chairs, etc. The GI Bill pays tuition and stipend only.
     
  5. grizz13

    grizz13 PEB Forum Veteran

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    Yes there is some confusion on the subject of the voc rehab college benefit (chapter 31) and the GI Bills (you can use all type in conjunction with chapter 31.)
    Yes GI bills give you 36 months, yes voc rehab gives an additional 12 months for a total of 48.
    Question 1. If I gave a family member 12 months of my 9-11 bill, what do I qualify for with voc rehab? A: 36 months, because you have "already used" 12 months by giving it to your family member.
    The Math: GI Bill @ 36 months + Chapter 31 @ 12 = 48 months
    12 months given to family member minus 36 months of GI Bill = 24 plus Chapter 31 = 36 months available to you
    Question 2: I only have 30 days left of my GI do I still qualify for voc rehab? Yes, you must have a minimum of 30 days of available from the GI Bill to get the additional 12 months.
    Question 3: Can I use my GI Bill seperate from the Voc rehab? Yes, but as stated in Question 2 you need to have that minimum amount.
    Question 4: I don't have a laptop available to me for college and I need one for a class, what can I do? The voc rehab has a free laptop program to assist with this, ask the counselor for the assistance.
    Question 5: I had some issues with being able to complete my degree in the alloted amount of time, am I out of luck? No, you counselor can request a hardship extension to add more time for you to complete your degree plan.

    I hope this clearified any of your questions, PM if you have anything more specific.
     
  6. alibs

    alibs PEB Forum Veteran

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    I was told the same, I'm using the 9/11. when that runs out, I can apply for VOC REHAB. I kbnow a older Vet who used up all of her Ch 30 GI Bill and is now using Voc Rehab.
     
  7. grizz13

    grizz13 PEB Forum Veteran

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    I understand this, but these are the rules for the 9-11 bill.
     
  8. Robert Albright

    Robert Albright PEB Forum Veteran

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    I did Voc Rehab during a break in service in the 1990s. Use them in the order that the VA office recommends. If you use them in the wrong order it can affect the total months of benefits you get.

    For example, I used the Montgomery GI Bill before I received my 20% VA Disability rating. The months of Montgomery GI Bill use affected the number of months of Voc Rehab I was elgible for. Back then, Voc Rehab was the better deal.

    Don't know how it stacks up against Post 9/11 or even what the stipend is these days. I believe that there is also a difference between what the guys rated at 20% and those rated at 30% and above are elgible for. I seem to remember something about being able to go past the usual number of months if neccesary.
     
  9. CW2 Retired

    CW2 Retired PEB Forum Veteran

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    Ok I am in VOCRehab now. Heres the deal. If you have exsausted your 9/11 then you still get 48 months of VOCRehab. I gave all my 9/11 GI Bill to my kids and only kept 1 month for myself. This allowed me to recieve the 9/11 rate which is slightly higher than the VOCRehab rate. The 48 months was not limited by my non availability of the 9/11 as I am in my second year of schooling and still only have 1 month of 9/11 left.

    I would contact the Education department of VA as they have Education, Disability,and Medical departments.

    Also contact the education councelor at your local Soldier Family Assistance Center SFAC. Good Luck!
     
  10. italianguy4

    italianguy4 PEB Forum Veteran

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    very helpful everyone, thank you. i have a better understanding to both sides now. va rep told me to apply for 9/11 first, then voc rehab. so one thing i want to clear up is what grizz and cw2 said, if i apply for 9/11 right now and use it...when i have 30 days left of it i can go ahead and apply for voc rehab on vonnapp? or do i apply for 9/11 today, and then for example apply for voc rehab over vonnapp tomorrow? or is that not allowed. im feeling that i should apply for 9/11 and then down the line when i almost used the 36 months up, then go ahead and apply for voc rehab.
     
  11. pittpan2005

    pittpan2005 PEB Forum Veteran

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    The main challenge with Vocational Rehab is it is NOT FOR EDUCATION! You can be approved for education, but its purpose is to allow someone to be employable. You have to prove to VOCAB why education is a necessity. This becomes increasingly difficult if you already have a degree or a profession in high demand and you're able to be employed with your disabilities. You can use VOCAB for an "indefinite" period if you play your cards right, but there is an application and approval process.

    If you're already approved for college and enrolled being granted approval by VOCAB is easier; therefore if education in your goal I recommend applying for both GI Bill and VOCAB at same time. Vocation rehab takes time and in case your semester starts before VOCAB is approved GI Bill will pick up the tab.

    Many people are denied education through VOCAB, while many are approved. You have to justify the decision.

    I am working on a graduate degree using GI Bill now and will be transferring to VOCAB hopefully next semester. Keep in mind my undergraduate degree combined with work experience makes me qualified for employment, but my medical problems prevent it from being a viable work option. Therefore my request for an advanced degree allowing me to work and make a livable wage was relatively easy to argue for.
     
  12. italianguy4

    italianguy4 PEB Forum Veteran

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    Thank you pitt. I havnt applied for either yet, due to waiting to be placed on tdrl. Did you apply through vonnapp twice? Once for the gi bill then again for VOCAB? That is what i am still confused about, can i apply for both one after another? I always wanted to become a police officer, but unfortunatly i have generalized anxiety disorder (which i was pdrl'd for) and also diagnosed with ptsd. So im guessing i have no chance :/. Anyways yes, i curious if you applied on vonnapp one after another. Thanks again
     
  13. pittpan2005

    pittpan2005 PEB Forum Veteran

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    VONAPP one right after the other. Both (separate) letters came in the mail within 2-3 weeks. Once the school submitted my enrollment info back to the VA, it took about 4 weeks for the paperwork to be processed and first monthly stipend paid. My first VOCAB appointment was within 1 month of applying; keep in mind timeframe may depend on location. There are also numerous appointments for VOCAB. I am on appointment three, two months since first appointment date, and it's still at the local level. It will have to go somewhere else for final approval.
     
  14. ikory

    ikory PEB Forum Veteran

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    I hate voc rehab however I will use it because I can get the Illinois veterans grant and Voc rehab to pay for tuition. So tuition cost $4,000 my school gets a $8,000 check and reimburses me the $4,000. Post 911 GI Bill will not let me use both grants but they do give a $500 book/supply check each semester. If you are 100% with the Post 911 Gi Bill you can choose to use Post GI pay instead of Voc Rehab monthly pay.

    I will graduate next year with 20 months left because Voc Rehab gives you 48. So after I graduate I will use the Post 911 Gi Bill to get my masters.
     
  15. nwlivewire

    nwlivewire PEB Forum Veteran

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    Dear One and All:

    If you can elect to receive the Post 9/11 GI Bill stipend while in the VA Voc Rehab, does the VA subtract any eligibility time off of your GI Bill?

    If so, in what ways?

    I have 100% Post 9/11 GI Bill for 30 months (used some time from Reserve GI Bill years ago), but am afraid to go to VA Voc Rehab for my education FIRST as I do not know if I will lose any time or stipend on my current GI Bill of 30 months. I'd like to save my current 30 months of 100% GI Bill for later use.

    Can someone clear this up for me please?

    V/r,
    nwlivewire
     
  16. pittpan2005

    pittpan2005 PEB Forum Veteran

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    They take month for month away from GI Bill. You can receive either the VOCAB stipend or GI Bill stipend while using the VOCAB program.

    If you enroll in VOCAB for 30 months, regardless of which stipend you receive, your GI Bill will most likely be fully depleted. One of the main problems is councilors all tell a different story or we each hear the info differently. When I was there for orientation they said, "month for month will be reduced." Could they be wrong? Yes. I will ask next week when I go back.
     
  17. italianguy4

    italianguy4 PEB Forum Veteran

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    Everything sounds good. What i am going to do is go ahead and finish my post 911 application then see how that goes then apply for vocab. What i have been worried about is if i go to school using the 911 i will lose my 100% TDIU payment, and dropped to 70%. If that happens it will be tough to support myself, i dont see why they would take it away though since i am not working, i am going to school.
     
  18. nwlivewire

    nwlivewire PEB Forum Veteran

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    Thanks pittpan2005!

    I keep getting different answers, too, which is why I asked here on this forum.

    Please let me know what you find out.

    V/r,
    nwlivewire
     
  19. grizz13

    grizz13 PEB Forum Veteran

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    I also have been told the same thing pitt and nw.
     
  20. pittpan2005

    pittpan2005 PEB Forum Veteran

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    TDIU is based on gainful employment; school shouldn't have any impact. If anything the VA should look "positively" on it because hopefully one day you will be off TDIU and employed in a new career field.
     

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