Frequently Asked Questions


Eligibility

Q. Who determines what I am eligible for? Can I talk to someone for more in-depth information regarding my VA status?

A. Frostburg State University falls under the VA Regional Processing Office in Buffalo, NY. Call 888-442-4551 for answers to your questions or submit a question through the GI Bill website at https://gibill.custhelp.com/

Semester Certification

Q. What is certification? When should I turn in my paperwork?

A. Certification (VA Form 22-1999 – electronically through VAONCE) is the information your school's certifying official sends to the VA regional processing office. The student's enrollment dates, training status, and class standing are all part of the certification. The sooner you turn in your paperwork, the sooner you will start receiving your monthly benefits. Rule of thumb: Turn in your forms as soon as possible after class registration to ensure a timely certification. You have one year from the start of a semester to file for benefits.

Q. What is a Letter of Intent (LOI)?

A. For each semester, you need to turn in a completed Letter of Intent (LOI). Semester enrollment forms are available on this website under Forms. They are also available at FSU’s Office of Veterans Services, Sand Spring Hall, Room 124.

Q. Do I need to submit anything with the LOI?

A. Yes, you will need to be sure to submit a copy of your academic requirements or Degree Plan. Graduate students will need to provide a copy (digital or hard) of their degree plan with their advisor’s signature.

Q. What should I do if I change my enrollment?

A. If you change your enrollment, immediately fill out and submit a change of enrollment form or send an email to the School Certifying Official. Withdrawing from a course may reduce your benefits. You may have to repay benefits unless you can show the change was due to mitigating circumstances. (If you have mitigating circumstances, let the School Certifying Official know so the information can be added to the updated certification.) Indicate on the change of enrollment form which classes were dropped and/or added and the effective date of the change.

Q. What if I change my major?

A. You need to submit the VA Form 22-1995 and a copy of your new academic requirements or Degree Plan. Your certification cannot be done until this paperwork is received by the school certifying official (SCO). You have 30 days to report the change to the VA.

Grades and the GI Bill

Q. If I fail, will the GI Bill still pay? May I retake a class to improve my grades?

A. If you fail a class, the professor will record your grade and last date of attendance. This can be determined by the last time homework was received, last test, etc. If this date is earlier than the end of the semester, the failing grade needs to be reported to the VA. For example, if the last date the professor received any class work from you is one month before the class ends and awards you a failing grade, your grade is reported to the VA and is treated as if you dropped the class on that date. When processed by the VA, under the Post-9/11 chapter, a debt will be created for the cost of tuition and fees, BAH and possibly book money paid for that class. Other chapters would have a debt established for the monthly stipend payment you had received for that class.

Q. What if I'm placed on academic probation because of low grades?

A. The VA uses the same progress standards listed in the FSU catalog. If your low grades lead to suspension due to unsatisfactory progress, the suspension will be reported to the VA. The School Certifying Official is required to report when students are placed on academic probation.

Q. Can I receive tutorial assistance?

A. You should first contact the Tutoring Center in Pullen Hall Room 151 to see if there is tutoring for the subject needed. Individual tutorial assistance can be reimbursed by the GI Bill for chapters 30, 33, 35 and 1606. Tutorial assistance is not available for chapter 1607 at this time. You must provide a letter from the course instructor stating you are deficient in the course and that individual tutoring would help correct the deficiency. The Tutoring Center has a list of available tutors. The monthly amount reimbursed cannot exceed $100. To apply, complete VA Form 22-1990t, Application and Enrollment Certification for Individualized Tutorial Assistance. Forms are available on the GI Bill website, or, from FSU's Office of Veterans Services. You will be required to pay the tutor up front and the VA will reimburse you.

What the GI Bill Pays For

Q. Can I take any courses I want?

A. The VA will only pay for classes that are degree-applicable. This means only classes that will count towards your degree program. The VA will pay for required orie courses or pre-requisites. See below concerning remedial classes.

Q. Will the VA pay for classes toward a minor?

A. If your degree has elective credits, you can use these electives to take classes for a minor. Otherwise, classes for a minor cannot be counted for certification. When you have filled your open electives, no future elective credits can be certified.

Q. What if I want to take degree applicable classes at another school?

A. Attending classes at two different schools at the same time is called concurrent enrollment. An example would be taking classes during the same semester at FSU and HCC. Use the Concurrent Enrollment Form for the classes being taken at the other school. The form is available from the Registrar’s Office and the Veterans Services Office. Complete the form and return it to the Registrar’s Office for processing. Once the form is approved, the Registrar’s Office will provide a copy to the SCO. The form is then signed by FSU’s certifying official and faxed with a parent letter to the concurrent school for certification.

Q. Will the GI Bill pay for remedial courses?

A. Yes, if you can demonstrate need. Low test scores on the ACT, SAT, or placement testing warrant need for remedial courses. If you do not have qualifying test scores, your remedial course cannot be considered for GI Bill benefits.

Q. Will the GI Bill pay for courses I audit?

A. No. The VA views an audited course the same as a dropped course.

Q. Will the GI Bill pay for honors courses?

A. Yes, but only when those courses count toward your major/degree. If a course is not degree-applicable, you cannot receive benefits.

Q. Can I receive benefits for a test for a license or certification?

A. Tests approved by the State Approving Agency may be reimbursed. Information about license and certification test reimbursement is at the GI Bill website.

Miscellaneous

Q. How do I update my direct deposit information or my address?

A. Call the VA at 877-838-2778 to update your direct deposit information. Chapter 30, 1606 and 1607 students who verify their attendance online can change their address and direct deposit information at that site. Other chapter students should call the VA hotline number at 1-888-442-4551 to update their address.

Q. Are VA education benefits taxable?

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

Q. What is enrollment verification and do I have to do one?

A. Only Chapters 30, 1606 and 1607 must verify at this time. In order to receive your monthly benefits from the GI Bill, you must verify your enrollment at the end of each month. There are two ways to verify; both are available 24 hours a day.

Go to GI Bill website under Information for Benefit Recipients/WAVE.

Telephone 877-823-2378 and use the Interactive Voice Response.

Q. Who pays my tuition and fees?

Chapters 30, 35, 1606 and 1607

A. It is your responsibility to see that tuition and fees are paid on time. Tuition and fees are due prior to the start of each semester. Your benefits are paid at the end of each month for that month.

Chapter 33

A. Students should supply their Certificate of Eligibility to the FSU school certifying official. A completed and signed LOI form must also be supplied prior to the start of the semester. The school certifying official and student billing office will then determine the amount due from the VA.

If this anticipated payment will not pay the student's bill completely (i.e., your eligibility level is not 100% or you have housing & meal plans), the student will be required to either pay the balance and/or complete a deferment form. The student billing office has the forms and the forms are also located under the Forms section of this website. Students who do not pay the remaining balance will accrue late fees and could have all classes dropped for non-payment. VA cannot be charged for late fees or reinstatement fees.

Chapter 31

A. When paperwork is received from the VOCREHAB case manager, FSU’s Veterans Services Office will present the Student Billing Office with a voucher to cover degree applicable classes. A copy will also be provided to the FSU Bookstore so the student can pick up their books and supplies prior to the start date of classes.

Veterans Services Office
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD 21532
Phone: 301.687.0131
Fax: 301.687.0148 
vets@frostburg.edu