by Patrick Campbell
The VA just relaunched their new GI Bill website. It is easier to use and has more GI Bill resources than before. The completely redesigned gibill.va.gov highlights key information such as “Finding a School,” “Applying for Benefits,” and a “Submit a Question” feature all in a simple to use manner.
These much needed improvements go a long way towards improving the accessibility of the site. Unfortunately, the VA has made no meaningful improvements to their GI Bill calculator other than changing the name from GI Bill “Benefits Estimator” to “Benefits Calculator.” Newgibill.org continues to offer the best GI Bill benefits calculator on the web because it answers the simple question: “What will I get using the new GI Bill?” Other sites still require a calculator and a slide rule to determine what you will actually receive. Below is a comparison of three different GI Bill benefits calculators commonly used by veterans; Newgibill.org, the VA and Military.com.
|Basic Living Allowance Rates|
|Basic Book Stipend|
|Adjusts for Nat'l Guard (40-100%)|
|Active Duty Rates|
|Enlistment Kickers Adjustment|
|Buy-up Program Adjustment|
|Search by School Name|
|Identify ineligible schools|
|Compare New/Old GI Bill|
|Remaining months of GI Bill|
|Correctly Totals Benefits|
IAVA pledges to continue working with the VA to improve their GI Bill resources so that all veterans can make smart choices about their hard earned benefits. In the meantime we strongly urge the VA to reach out to IAVA to help develop the second phase of their website development, due out in May. We are ready to work with the VA to improve their benefits calculator, FAQ section and application process.
For breaking updates on the Post-9/11 GIBill, follow IAVA on Twitter @NewGIBill.