REAP provides educational assistance to members of the Reserve components called or ordered to active duty in response to a war or national emergency declared by the president or Congress.
Change in REAP Eligibility
The National Defense Authorization Act of 2016 ended REAP on November 25, 2015. Some individuals will remain eligible for REAP benefits until November 25, 2019, while others are no longer eligible for REAP benefits.
The Post-9/11 GI Bill ® in many ways has replaced REAP because it also provides educational assistance benefits for Reserve and National Guard members called to active duty on or after September 11, 2001, and in many cases provides a greater benefit than REAP.
VA is committed to ensuring that Reservists, National Guard members, and Veterans understand this change, and they are working to identify individuals who no longer have eligibility for REAP and inform them of potential eligibility to other benefit programs.
This change affects beneficiaries differently:
- Current REAP beneficiaries—Veterans who were attending an educational institution on November 24, 2015, or during the last semester, quarter, or term ending prior to that date, are eligible to continue to receive REAP benefits until November 25, 2019.
- REAP beneficiaries not attending school—Veterans who applied for REAP but were not attending an educational institution on November 24, 2015, or during the last semester, quarter, or term ending prior to that date, are no longer eligible to receive REAP benefits. You may be eligible to receive benefits under the Post-9/11 GI Bill ®.
- New REAP applicants—Veterans who have not enrolled in school and applied for REAP benefits prior to November 25, 2015, are no longer eligible for REAP benefits. However, in most cases, you will be eligible for the Post- 9/11 GI Bill ®.
You may be eligible for Post-9/11 GI Bill ® benefits depending on the dates of your periods of service. If VA receives a new application for REAP on or after November 25, 2015, VA will evaluate your eligibility for all programs, including Post-9/11 GI Bill ®, and may award you benefits under a different program.
If you’re using REAP but would like to learn how to make an irrevocable election to use the Post-9/11 GI Bill ® instead, please call us at 1-888-GIBILL-1 (7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST Monday – Friday) to speak with an Education Call Center Agent.
Refer to VA’s website at www.benefits.va.gov/gibill for more detailed information.