Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP) Chapter 1607
Chapter 1607 is a Department of Defense education benefit program designed to provide educational assistance to members of Reserve components called or ordered to active duty in response to a war or national emergency (contingency operation) as declared by the President or Congress.
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.
What is Chapter 1607?
Chapter 1607 was established as a part of the Ronald W. Reagan National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2005. The Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security determines who is eligible for the program. The Department of Veterans Affairs administers the program and pays benefits from funds contributed by DOD.
The benefit makes certain individuals who were activated after September 11, 2001 either eligible for education benefits or eligible for increased benefits.
Note: “Contingency Operations” as defined in Title 10 U.S. Code means “military operations that are designated by the Secretary of Defense as an operation in which members of the armed forces are or may become involved in military actions, operations or hostilities against an enemy of the United States or against opposing military force; or results in the call or order to, or retention on active duty of members of the uniformed services…”
Who is eligible for Chapter 1607?
The Secretaries of each military service, Department of Defense, and Department of Homeland Security (Coast Guard) will determine eligibility.
A member of a reserve component who serves on active duty on or after September 11, 2001, under Title 10 U.S. Code for a contingency operation and who serves at least 90 consecutive days or more is eligible for Chapter 1607. National Guard members also are eligible if their active duty is under Section 502(f), Title 32 U.S.C. and they serve for 90 consecutive days when authorized by the President or Secretary of Defense for a national emergency and is supported by federal funds. Individuals are eligible as soon as they reach the 90-day point whether or not they are currently on active duty.
DOD will fully identify contingency operations that they qualify for benefits under Chapter 1607.
You may be eligible for benefits even if you are no longer attending monthly Drill. Complete VA Form 22-1990 and let VA determine eligibility.
Disabled members who are injured or have an illness or disease incurred or aggravated in the line of duty and are released from active duty before completing 90 consecutive days are also eligible.
How many months will I be entitled to Chapter 1607?
You will receive 36 months of full-time entitlement at your given rate. A Chapter 1607 participant may not use more than 48 months of entitlement under any combination of VA Educational programs. For example, if you’ve already used 20 months of Chapter 1606, you will only receive 28 months of Chapter 1607.
What’s the earliest date I can use Chapter 1607?
Chapter 1607 benefits may be paid before the date of enactment, the law, which was October 28, 2004. Chapter 1607 benefits are potentially payable form December 9, 2001 (90 days after September 11, 2001) for persons who were serving on a contingency operation on September 11, 2001 and who were in school on December 9, 2001. The Department of Defense may provide further guidance as to the retroactive nature of this program.
How long do I have to use my benefits under Chapter 1607?
There is no fixed delimitating period (ending date) for persons eligible under Chapter 1607, as there is for all of the other VA education programs.
There are exceptions. If you are separated for a disability which was not the result of your willful misconduct, you are entitled to Chapter 1607 benefits for 10-years after the date of entitlement.
Call 1-888-442-4551 for case-specific information.
Can I receive Chapter 1607 with any other education benefits?
No, you must make an irrevocable election choosing which program you want your military service to count towards.
You also cannot receive assistance under more than one VA Education program at one time. If you are eligible for a Chapter 1606 kicker, you can still be paid that kicker while receiving Chapter 1607.
Do I have to contribute $1,200 to receive the Chapter 1607 Benefit?
No. Unlike the MGIB-Active Duty, Reserve Component service members do not have to pay anything to participate in Chapter 1607.
The only eligibility criteria is at least 90 continuous days of service after September 11, 2001, under one of the qualifying operations.
When can I receive Chapter 1607?
VA has begun processing claims for REAP. However, there are over 9,000 REAP claims pending so please be patient while they process these claims.
Do I lose my Chapter 1606 kicker under Chapter 1607?
No, you will not lose the kicker.
The Chapter 1606 kicker will be included in the Chapter 1607 benefit, so long as you were entitled to a Chapter 1606 kicker before the call-up.
What programs can I take under Chapter 1607?
All education programs (except Licensing and Certification test reimbursement) that are approved for veterans under the Montgomery GI Bill Active Duty program are approved for the Chapter 1607 program.
Do I have Chapter 1607 eligibility, if released early due to disability?
Members released early for a disability incurred or aggravated in the line of duty may receive Chapter 1607 benefits at the 40% rate.
The member is entitled to Chapter 1607 benefits for 10 years from the date of eligibility.
How do I apply for Chapter 1607?
Apply now! VA Regional Processing Offices in Atlanta, St. Louis, Buffalo and Muskogee are accepting applications and supporting documents for Chapter 1607 claims.
If you have never submitted an Education Claim to VA, Submit "Application for VA Education Benefits" (VA Form 22-1990) and submit any available documents such as your Discharge from Military Service (DD Form 214) (do not send originals), copies of orders to active duty and anything else available as evidence of qualifying service.
Annotate "Chapter 1607" prominently on all correspondence and documents.
What if I have previously filed a claim for education benefits?
If you have previously filed a claim for Education Benefits, a new application form is not required.
However, you should submit any available documents such as your Discharge from Military Service (DD Form 214) (do not send originals), copies of orders to active duty and anything else available as evidence of qualifying service to help establish eligibility for this program.
You should also submit a “Request for Change of Program or Place of Training” (VA Form 22-1995) which should be annotated “1607.” Annotate “Chapter 1607” prominently on all correspondence and documents.
What is the new benefit amount?
Please check www.va.gov for the latest rates.
Where may I obtain an application for education benefits?
Applications may be obtained from your school, or you can download a copy of the application from VA.
- VA Form 22-1990 Application for VA Education Benefits
- VA Form 22-1995 Request For Change of Program or Place of Training
- Or you can use the VA online application program
Contact the Education and Training Division if you have additional questions about this benefit.
You can also call VA's toll free number 1-888-GI-BILL-1 (1-888-442-4551) or visit any VA Regional Office.