VA Opens New Phone Line for Survivor Education Benefits

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On Monday, the Department of Veterans Affairs announced the opening of a new helpline dedicated to assisting family members of fallen and wounded warriors with their education benefits.

The VA offers two major dependent education benefit programs to family members of those who gave the ultimate in service to their country:

  1. The Dependents Education Assistance (DEA) program, also known as Chapter 35, which provides benefits to survivors and dependents of veterans who died or are permanently and totally disabled as the result of a service-connected disability.
  2. The Marine Gunnery Sgt. John D. Fry Scholarship or "Fry Scholarship," which is available to surviving spouses and children of service members who died in the line of duty after Sept. 10, 2001.

The helpline can be reached by calling the VA Education hotline at 888-442-4551 and selecting Option 5 from the menu. Callers will be connected with a VA employee who is an expert in education benefits for survivors and trained to assist beneficiaries to receive the maximum benefits to which they are entitled. They are also trained to rapidly fix any problems that callers may be experiencing with their benefits.

While the employees are experts in education benefits, they also are cross-trained in other VA benefits and can help callers connect with the proper office, government agency or organization to ensure all beneficiaries receive the maximum benefit they are entitled to from local, state and federal agencies.

The hotline is available from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Central time Monday to Friday.

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