Washington University recognizes that students using U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) education benefits may encounter situations where payments to the institution and the individual are delayed through no fault of the student. This policy recognizes and makes appropriate allowances for students in such situations; it applies to all university schools and programs.

It is Washington University’s policy to not impose penalties on individuals using Veteran Education Benefits, including the assessment of late fees, the denial of access to classes, libraries or other institutional facilities, or the requirement to borrow additional funds to cover the student’s inability to meet his or her financial obligations to the institution due to the delayed disbursement of a payment by the VA. This applies to individuals who submit their Certificate of Eligibility for entitlement to educational assistance to their VA School Certifying Official (SCO).

  1. Students should submit a Certificate of Eligibility not later than the first day of a course for which the student wishes to use the entitlement for educational assistance. The SCO will advise the student to provide additional Documentation and information necessary for the proper certification of enrollment.
  2. If a student does not receive their Certificate of Eligibility from the VA by the start of the academic term, the student should notify their SCO of their intent to use Veteran Education Benefits and should submit additional Documentation and forms as requested.
  3. In cases where a student is unable to meet a financial obligation to the university because the amount of a disbursement from the VA is less than anticipated, the university will require additional payment from the student and will provide the student with a timeline for payment before assessing late fees. Students should contact their SCO for assistance.
  4. Students may request certification for previous academic terms if they were eligible for benefits at the time for which they want to be certified. In cases where Veteran Education Benefits are used to certify previous academic terms, students are responsible for any late fees incurred prior to the date of the certification request. This excludes Yellow Ribbon benefits, which are not retroactive for previous fiscal years.

Access the VA Educational Benefits page for step-by-step guidance on accessing your benefits.

The point of contact for this policy is the Office of Military and Veteran Services. Students may contact the office at (314) 935-2609 or veterans@wustl.edu or their School Certifying Official for guidance and assistance.


  1. Veteran Education Benefits: Education benefits provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to eligible Service Members, veterans, and certain dependents and survivors. Beneficiaries may receive financial support for undergraduate and graduate degrees, vocational and technical training, licensing and certification tests, apprenticeships, on-the-job training, and more.
  2. Certificate of Eligibility: Letter from the VA issued to an eligible individual showing approval to pursue a stated program of education at a particular institution, the remaining entitlement of the eligible individual, and the ending date of the eligible individual’s eligibility.
  3. School Certifying Official (SCO): Person on campus, typically within the Registrar’s office, who reports student status and progress to VA. Access the list of SCOs on campus.
  4. Documentation: Substantiating proof of Military Service that will vary from case to case and that may include (but is not limited to) the following:
  • A DD 214 Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty;
  • A copy of duty orders prepared by the facility where the orders were fulfilled carrying an endorsement indicating completion of the described service;
  • A letter from the commanding officer of a personnel support activity or from someone of comparable authority;
  • A certificate of completion from military training school;
  • A discharge certificate showing character of service;
  • A copy of extracts from payroll documents showing periods of service; and
  • A letter from a National Disaster Medical System (NDMS) team leader or administrative officer verifying the dates and times of NDMS training or federal activation.