The University of Idaho has generously expanded the Choice Act, Section 702, to include all out-of-state veterans with GI Bill benefits, within three years of when they were discharged. The 2014 Choice Act for Veterans was signed into law by President Obama on Aug. 7, 2014. The law went into effect on July 1, 2015.
What the Law Does
The law prevents state colleges or universities from charging out-of-state tuition to veterans who are within three years of discharge from active duty (defined as a period of 90 days or more) and using the Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB, Chapter 30) or Post 9/11 GI Bill (Chapter 33). It also applies to dependents who have received benefits transferred to them, if the service member has been discharged within the past three years, or is still on Active Duty.
What Do I Need to Qualify?
Proof of Idaho Domicile
Students must provide a copy of a rental or lease agreement, utility bill or bank statement as proof that they are living in Idaho. If living in campus residence halls, we will determine your Idaho domicile by reviewing your U of I Student Account Bill. If living on campus in a fraternity or sorority, students must provide a copy of their House Bill.
Effective fall 2015, non-resident veterans using the Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB, Chapter 30) and the Post 9/11 GI Bill (Chapter 33) who have been discharged from active service and are living in Idaho will not pay out-of-state tuition at the University of Idaho. A discharged veteran doesn’t have to live in Idaho for a certain length of time, but they do have to be within 3 years since discharged. To qualify for this out-of-state tuition waiver, we will use a student’s VA Certificate of Eligibility (CE) as proof of qualifying military service. If the CE has not been received, then we will accept a DD Form 214 as proof of military service. Proof of living in Idaho is still required as stated above.
The Choice Act out-of-state tuition waiver does apply to some dependents (children or spouse) using transferred benefits under the Post 9/11 GI Bill (Chapter 33) as follows:
- If the service member (sponsor/parent) is within three years since discharge, then their dependents living in Idaho qualify for an out-of-state tuition waiver under the new Veterans Choice Act.
- If the service member is still on active duty, students using transferred benefits will qualify for the out-of-state tuition waiver beginning 1 July 2017 under the Veterans Choice Act. The requirement remains that any student using the Choice Act must live in Idaho to qualify.