Servicemembers who are getting out of the service that are not sure if they want to start college right away, there is hope. You have up to ten years to use your Montgomery GI Bill benefits before they expire, and if you are in the reserves and get mobilized for more than 90 days the 10-year clock resets. So the benefits and support that you enjoy with the Montgomery GI bill will be there for you to use, even if you decide to take your time before using it.
The United State Congress of 2000 worked to make several different types of changes to the Montgomery GI Bill. There were a couple of different types of benefits that were added to the program. These are the Top up And the Buy Up options, and both of these types of options can affect the actual amount of money that you have available when you separate from the service. Both are options that you have to start before you leave active duty service in order for you to be able to utilize them. MGIB Buy up allows a Servicemember to made contributions to their MGIB account up to an additional $600 dollars. That level of contribution will then allow them to receive up to an additional amount of $5,400 dollars, at the monthly rate of about a $150 dollars a month. That increases the total amount of your MGIB quite substantially.
To qualify for the Buy up option of the Montgomery GI Bill you have to have joined the Military after 1985, and be on active duty service at the time you start making your additional contributions. You need only contribute an additional $600 dollars to fully qualify; you can do that in a number of deductions from your pay as you work out with your personnel support office.
Using the Top up option of the Montgomery GI bill is just as easy. It is a specific program that is designed to be used while you are on active duty, it helps cover the difference for going to school beyond what TA or Tuition Assistance pays. You can receive aid and financial assistance if you have been on active duty service for at least two years, if you are a person that qualifies and is receiving the Tuition Assistance military program, and if you qualify in other respects for the New GI Bill.