Survivors' and Dependents' Assistance

If you are a dependent or survivor of a Veteran, you may be eligible for educational assistance through a GI Bill program.

Are you eligible for benefits?

Yes, if you are the child or spouse of a Servicemember:

  • Who died in the line of duty after September 10, 2001, or

  • Who is missing in action or was captured in the line of duty by a hostile force, or

  • Who was forcibly detained in the line of duty by a foreign government or power, or

  • Who is hospitalized or receiving outpatient treatment for a service-connected permanent and total disability and likely to be discharged for that disability. Yes, if you are the child or spouse of a Veteran:

  • Who is permanently and totally disabled due to a service-connected disability, or

  • Who died while on active duty or as a result of a service-connected disability. Yes, if you are eligible to receive a transfer of Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits.

Who is covered

Your family

Available benefits

  • Education and training opportunities
  • Significant tuition-funding assistance
  • A location-adjusted housing allowance for you to pay your living expenses during enrollment
  • A stipend for books and supplies

How it works

There are two main GI Bill programs offering educational assistance to survivors and dependents of Veterans:

You may be eligible for both of these programs, but you can use only one of them. You’ll have to decide which one when you apply, and once you make this decision, it is final.

Exception: As a beneficiary, you cannot use the same qualifying event for more than one benefit unless you are a child of a Servicemember who died in the line of duty before August 1, 2011.

Compare DEA and Fry Scholarship Benefits
DEA Fry Scholarship
Benefit Payments VA pays the monthly amount directly to the student. The current monthly payment for full-time training is $1,018.
  • Tuition and Fee Payment (paid to the school): VA covers the full in-state tuition costs for training at public institutions and up to $20,035.02 per year at private institutions.

  • Books and Supplies Stipend (paid to the student): VA covers up to $1,000 a year, divided up equally among the terms, for books and supplies.

  • Monthly Housing Allowance (paid to the student): VA bases this allowance on local BAH for E-5 with dependents and pays it monthly. Online students receive half of the BAH national average.
 
Duration of Benefits 20 years from the Servicemember’s date of death 15 years from the Servicemember’s date of death
Maximum Months of Benefits 45 months 36 months
Simultaneous Receipt of DIC and Education Benefits for Spouse Yes Yes
Programs Covered
  • College, business, technical, or vocational programs
  • Certification tests
  • Apprenticeships and on-the-job training
  • Tutorial assistance
  • Work study
  • College, business, technical, or vocational programs
  • Certification tests
  • Apprenticeships and on-the-job training
  • Vocational flight training
  • Tutorial assistance
  • Work study