March 19, 2020

House Passes Bill Supported by Duckworth & Durbin to Protect GI Bill Benefits as Universities Move Online Due to Coronavirus


[WASHINGTON, DC] – Bipartisan legislation supported by combat Veteran and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) as well as U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) that would make sure student Veterans and their loved ones receiving benefits through the GI Bill continue receiving full benefits today passed through the U.S. House of Representatives and now heads to the President’s desk for his signature. The legislation, which both Senators helped introduce in the Senate, would temporarily allow these beneficiaries to continue receiving education benefits without change as their classes transition from in-person to online in response to coronavirus. The GI Bill calculates education benefits based on whether or not veterans attend a physical university in person versus an online program.

“Even during difficult times, our country needs to keep the promises we made to our Veterans, and that includes ensuring those who've earned GI Bill education benefits—and their loved ones—are still able to receive them during the COVID-19 crisis,” Duckworth said. “I was proud to help introduce and vote to pass this critical bipartisan legislation in the Senate, am proud the House passed it as well and I hope the President signs it into law as soon as possible.”

“This temporary measure will ensure veterans don’t lose their G.I. Bill Benefits as our nation continues to address the coronavirus pandemic,” Durbin said. “I’m glad Congress agreed to extend this relief to our veterans and I urge President Trump to sign this now.”

The legislation was introduced in the Senate by Veterans’ Affairs Committee Ranking Member Jon Tester (D-MT) and Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Jerry Moran (R-KS).