WASHINGTON (NNS) — NAVADMIN 170/18 announces updated changes to the Department of Defense Post-9/11 GI Bill instruction. Department of Defense released changes July 12, to department policy on the transfer by service members in the Uniformed Services of “Post-9/11 GI Bill” education benefits to eligible family members.

Effective July 12, 2019, eligibility to transfer those benefits is limited to Sailors with less than 16 years of total service, active duty service and/or selected Reserves as applicable.

Previously, there were no restrictions on when Sailors could transfer education benefits to their family members. The provision for a Sailor to have at least six years of service to apply to transfer benefits remains unchanged.

Sailors with more than 16 years of credible service who have not completed the transfer eligibility by July 12, 2019 will not retain the ability to transfer education benefits to eligible family members.

GARDEN CITY, N.Y. (Sept. 15, 2017) Chief Navy Counselor Danielle Marbley reacts as her daughters help pin anchors to her uniform, signifying her advancement to the rank of chief petty officer, during a ceremony at the Cradle of Aviation Museum in Garden City, N.Y. (U.S. Navy photo by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Travis Simmons/Released)

The policy change allows Sailors to retain their eligibility to transfer education benefits even if they have not served the entirety of their obligated service commitment through no fault of their own. This means if a Sailor fails to fulfill their service obligation because of a “force shaping” event (such as officers involuntarily separated as a result of being twice passed over for promotion, or enlisted personnel involuntarily separated as a result of failure to meet minimum retention standards, such as high-year tenure) the transfer of benefits to a family member would not be impacted.

All approvals for transferability of Post-9/11 GI Bill continue to require a four-year commitment in the Armed Forces and, more importantly, the member must be eligible to be retained for four years from the date of election.

For more information about the Post-9/11 GI Bill policy changes, see NAVADMIN 170/18 at www.npc.navy.mil.

For more on the policy, visit http://www.esd.whs.mil/DD/.