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How to Apply For Education Benefits

When looking into Veteran Affairs benefits, learning how to apply for veterans education and training programs is crucial. Any mistakes on the veterans education and training program application could result in a failure to receive benefits. If an applicant is intimidated and unsure of where to begin to apply for veterans education benefits, he or she is encouraged to first determine eligibility. If an applicant is eligible, they will move on towards the application process. For more information on how to apply for VA education and training programs, the following topics are available:

  • Applicable forms
  • Methods to apply

Learn About Applicable Forms

The forms necessary to apply for education program applications for veterans can either be downloaded from online or picked up at the local VA office. The four main types of applications that will be useful for veterans are the Post 9/11 GI Bill, the Montgomery GI Bills and the post Veterans’ Educational Assistance Program (VEAP). To be eligible to apply for VA education and training programs such as the post 9/11 GI Bill education benefits, an applicant must have been on active duty 90 days following the 9/11 incident. The GI Bill pays for all tuition including books and living expenses. Both Montgomery GI Bills are offered to active duty

When filling out the education program applications for veterans, it is important to have all dates of active military service that pertain to the particular benefit’s criteria. Another important thing is to note if the applicant is currently enrolled in any other VA education programs. If he or she is enrolled into a program, be sure to list the number of months of eligibility remaining. This is important because some programs will allow for additional benefits to be added under certain programs a veteran is already enrolled in. For example, veterans receiving benefits from the Montgomery GI Bill detailing active duty or REAP are eligible for the Buy-Up Program, which is an education program application for veterans that provides extra funding to the GI Bill Benefits.

Be aware that applicants looking to apply for the Post 9/11 GI Bill while enrolled in another program is irrevocable if the applicant decides to apply with the Post 9/11 GI Bill program. Meaning, that once a veteran has switched to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, he or she cannot revert back to the previous plan.

Another factor that a veteran should be aware of is that if he or she is also looking to apply for Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E) services, the applicant cannot use the education program application for veterans to apply for VR&E. Despite how similar the two applications are, a veteran must apply for the VR&E with a separate application. Additionally, programs such as Dependents Education Assistance Benefits, Transfer of Entitlement, National Call to Service and the Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship all require a different application than the education program application for veterans.

Learn About Methods to Apply

Before going down to pick up a veterans education and training program application, be sure to identify which benefit is going to be the best fit. Not all veterans will be eligible for all of these benefit programs. In some cases, if a veteran is eligible for one program, it makes them ineligible for others. Once a veteran has determined which benefit will work best for them and is ready to apply, then he or she must go and retrieve the paperwork. To apply for veterans education benefits, there are a few different methods available. If the veteran decides to go and fill out the paperwork by hand the applicant will have a few options for obtaining the forms.

If the veteran has yet to choose their institution or training program, he or she must contact their regional VA processing office for the applications. The other option to apply for veterans education and training program applications is to contact the school or training program establishment that a veteran is applying for to have them provide the forms. All VA certified schools have these forms available along with assistance for completing them.

For veterans who want to apply online for veterans education and training program applications, her or she can do so. Once the forms have been filled out, the form must be submitted for review. The veterans education and training program applications will be processed by the VA even if the veteran has not selected their institution or training program. In these instances the VA will process the application to determine if education benefits can be disbursed to the applicant.

Different ways you can apply

Some states may allow you to apply for energy assistance online through a state website. This is typically the case for states that operate LIHEAP at the state level rather than the county level. The department accepting applications can vary from state to state. However, generally the state Department of Health and Human Services will host and process the application. To apply for LIHEAP online, you typically need to make an account with your state’s benefits program. For example, the state of Vermont requires you to make an account with myBenefits, operated by the Department for Children and Families Agency of Human Services.

Once you create an account, you can begin the process of applying for LIHEAP online. You should expect to provide personal and financial information throughout the application, including your name, gender, marital status, physical and mailing address and more. You will typically need a Social Security Number (SSN) as well. Then, you will need to provide information for every member of your household. Depending on the state you live in, you may or may not be required to include income information for all members of the household, including children. You may also be asked for information regarding how often everyone in the household shares meals and whether anyone sometimes lives elsewhere. You may be asked about your work history or whether you have any disabilities as well on the HEAP application.

On your online LIHEAP application, you should provide information about your income sources. This can include what was on your most recent paychecks, how often you work and contact information for your employer. You will also be asked about how much you pay in rent, energy and other bills to determine your financial need. The level of detail required can vary from state to state, with some requiring a breakdown of income sources and others requiring more general information. Once you complete the application, you should be able to submit it online. You may be required to verify additional information by mail or in person, depending on your state.

Download our comprehensive guide to learn more about the HEAP application process.

In some cases, you can apply for LIHEAP by mail or by email. This may be the case if your state operates LIHEAP at a county or district level rather than at a state level. This is also mostly limited to states that have a statewide application form, even if they administer benefits at a local level. To find the printable HEAP application, you may have to visit your state’s DHHS website. In some states, such as Vermont, you can call a number to have a form delivered to you.

When you receive your LIHEAP application form, you should fill it out completely. You will typically be required to fill out information for all members of your household. Be prepared to supply the same information that is requested in the online section above. You may additionally have to include documents like recent pay stubs and utility bills to complete your HEAP program application.

Contact your local LIHEAP office to determine whether you should submit originals or copies of documents included in the application. Mark your envelope and mail it with the appropriate postage to the address indicated on your form or your nearest office. After submitting your application, you should receive a decision on whether you receive LIHEAP benefits within a few weeks, depending on your location.

In some cases, you can submit your Home Energy Assistance Program application through email. Rather than including copies of necessary documents, you should include scans and attach them to the email as necessary. Research your municipality’s specific instructions to determine if you can email your application and where you should send it.

Many states and municipalities require you to apply for energy assistance in person. This is particularly true of states that operate LIHEAP at the local level. States like Texas require you to make an in-person visit to an agency to get approved and submit an application for benefits. In some cases, you may be required to bring everyone in your household or provide signatures from the adults.

You can find LIHEAP application locations on your state’s DHHS or LIHEAP website. You may be required to schedule an appointment with the LIHEAP agency first. In that case, you can either schedule an appointment online or by calling the office directly, depending on your state. Schedule an appointment with the agency nearest to you and begin gathering necessary documents. This may include pay stubs, rental verification if you rent and utility bills to demonstrate your need for assistance. In some states, you must locate a printable LIHEAP application and fill it out to bring with you to your appointment. In others, you will not fill out an application until you arrive at the appointment.

Arrive at your appointment on time to complete the fuel assistance application. Bring all your necessary documents with you to the appointment, as well as any household members that are required. Depending on your state’s process, it may take more than one visit to complete the application process.

Once your application is processed, your power provider will typically receive a single one-time lump sum payment. This payment may be to settle debts or to cover part of your electricity bills for the season. To learn more about how to apply for low income electricity benefits, download our comprehensive guide on LIHEAP.