IG: VA overpaid hundreds of millions to GI Bill schools

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A military photo illustration depicts a servicemember studying. (Nell King/Defense Department)
From Stripes.com
A military photo illustration depicts a servicemember studying. (Nell King/Defense Department)

IG: VA overpaid hundreds of millions to GI Bill schools

by: Nikki Wentling | .
Stars and Stripes | .
published: October 01, 2016

WASHINGTON — Schools approved for the GI Bill received $247.6 million more than they should have during the 2013-2014 academic year, according to a report released Friday from the Department of Veterans Affairs inspector general’s office.

The post-9/11 GI Bill paid out $5.2 billion for 796,000 veterans to go to school from 2013 to 2014, the report states. However, about 5 percent of the payments were made in error, costing $247.6 million in overpayments. An additional $205.5 million was not recouped when students withdrew from school or dropped a class or repeated courses, making the veterans ineligible for the benefit that was already paid.

The IG report concluded the design of the post-9/11 GI Bill program made it “susceptible” to doling out improper payments.

If the program isn’t fixed, the report states, the Veterans Benefits Administration, which administers the program, could issue $1.2 billion in overpayments in the next 5 school years and fail to recover about $1 billion.

Read more at: http://www.stripes.com/1.431840

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