For tips and more information on how to use the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill, click here.

In 2016, according to Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) data, more than 790,000 students used Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits to go to school. However, not all of them were current or former service members.

Thanks to a transferability option in the bill, servicemen and women have the ability to hand off all — or some — of their unused benefits to certain relatives who can then put it toward their own higher education.

A Service Member Can Transfer Their G.I. Bill to …Who?

Dependents. To find out who officially qualifies as a dependent, click here.

How Does a Service Member Start the Process?

The request to transfer benefits must be completed by the service member while they’re active in the military. It’s called a Transfer of Entitlement (TOE), and it can only be filed through the Department of Defense (DoD) — by clicking here, then clicking on the “Transfer my education benefits” button in the middle of the page.

Once that’s filed, whether or not the bill can be transferred will determined (by the DoD alone — not the VA). If they approve, the process then moves back to the VA, and the TOE can then be used to apply for G.I. Bill benefits here.

Qualified dependents may receive money (up to 36 months-worth) to put towards the following: tuition, housing, books and supplies.

For more information on when qualifying dependents are permitted to use the benefits, or to contact a career counselor or personnel center, click here.