The Department of Defense has changed the stipulations in regards to transferring the GI Bill to the service member’s family members. In the past, the primary stipulation was that the service member had to serve at least six years before their GI Bill could be applied to their spouse or children. This has remained the same, but now if the person decides to stay in the military for longer than 16 years, their family members are no longer eligible to have the benefit transferred to them. They also must have signed up for another four years after their initial six to meet this criterion.

In short: if you are a career military person, after 16 years in the service your spouse and/or children will no longer be able to use your GI Bill.

The director of Accessions Policy, Office of the Secretary of Defense, Stephanie Miller, said that, “After a thorough review of the policy, we saw a need to focus on retention in a time of increased growth of the Armed Forces. This change continues to allow career service members that earned this benefit to share it with their family members while they continue to serve … this change is an important step to preserve the distinction of transferability as a retention incentive.”

The precise wording reads as follows: