Education loans may be authorized by VA to spouses and surviving spouses with Chapter 35 eligibility who have passed their periods of eligibility for educational assistance benefit payments but who still have unused months of that entitlement. The loan program is based upon financial need.
Basic eligibility for an education loan may exist if these individuals:
Individuals wishing to apply for an education loan should complete Form 22-8725. A loan application may be submitted as early as 30 days prior to the commencement of the enrollment period, but, in any case, an application must be received by VA before the end of the enrollment period for which the loan is requested. The application for an education loan requests a statement of financial resources, educational costs, enrollment data, etc. A separate loan application is required for each semester and for each summer term.
The instruction page attached to Form 22-8725 contains complete information regarding completion of items in the application by the applicant and by the certifying official. The applicant must indicate the enrollment period for which the loan is requested. Education costs for that period only, along with financial resources based on that period, will be used to determine the loan amount to be authorized. Loans may be approved only for students who are satisfactorily pursuing their educational programs and who need additional financial assistance to remain in school.
In addition to certifying information that is routinely furnished on Form 22-1999, Enrollment Certification, for other students, the certifying official must furnish the cost of room and board at the institution, if available, and to validate the applicant's reported receipt or nonreceipt of other types of financial assistance. If the institution participates in the VA education loan program by agreeing to receive the applicant's loan payment and to deliver the check to him or her, the certifying official will also be responsible for completing a certification of delivery of the loan check (Form 4-5220a), which will be enclosed in the same envelope as the check. If a loan payment is received for a student and that student has not reported to the certifying official within 30 days to claim the check, the unopened envelope must be returned to the U.S. Treasury.
Before a loan payment is released, the student must execute form 22-8726, Promissory Note (Veterans or Eligible Persons Education Loan Program), which provides for repayment of principal and interest. Repayment of both principal and interest is deferred during any period the student is enrolled in training and attending on at least a half-time basis.