If I Withdraw From a Class While Using Post 9//11 GI Bill Benefits, Will I Have to Pay Money Back?

Q: I have the Post 9/11 GI Bill. I’m taking 12 credit hours and that is considered full-time. I have to withdraw from one of my major classes and there are no other classes for the 2nd 8-week term to take over the spot of this class. How is this going to affect my GI Bill and do I have to pay for that class? I will be taking the same class next semester at a different campus. Does that effect how they will pay for the school?

A: If this is the first class you have had to withdraw from since you started using your Post 9/11 GI Bill, and it totals less than six credits, then the VA will most likely waive you having to repay them for the course.  If you have already had your “grace” withdraw, then whether you have to pay the VA back for the class you withdraw from or not, depends on your reason for withdrawing.

Generally, if it was due to something beyond your control that prevented you from attending class (such as a long term illness) or temporary disability (such as a car accident), then most likely, you would not have to pay for the class. However, it was something within your control, then you may have to pay. It also gets into whether it was punitive or non-punitive, but that get down into the weeds pretty deep and we really don't need to go there.

State your reason for withdrawing at the time you inform the VA about your withdrawal (through your VA Certifying Official). If they agree your reason was not within your control, and you don’t have to repay them for the class, then it can prevent you from getting into an overpayment situation.  If you withdraw without telling them why, then they may assess an overpayment until they find out why. You want to avoid overpayment if at all possible.

If you drop a class, it shouldn’t interfere with your housing allowance though as long as your rate of pursuit is still considered greater than half-time, which in your case would be seven credits.

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