The 85 percent rule, or 85/15 rule, prohibits Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) from paying benefits to students who are enrolling in a program when more than 85 percent of the students that are already enrolled in that program have any part of their tuition, fees, or other mandatory charges paid for them ("supported") by the educational and training institution (ETI) or by VA under Title 38 or Title 10. In other words, at least 15 percent of the students enrolled in a given program must be self-supported ("non-supported"), or VA cannot pay benefits for newly enrolling GI Bill® students.
The provisions of the 85/15 rule do not apply to the following types of programs:
All other approved programs offered at non-exempted educational and training institutions must follow the 85/15 rule.
Congress adopted the 85/15 rule as a way to combat the predatory school abuses that occurred after the implementation of the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944. To this day, the 85/15 rule remains an important safeguard to the integrity of the GI Bill.
VA cannot pay benefits for a program if more than 85 percent of the students in that program are having any part of the cost paid by VA or the school. When the ratio of supported students to non-supported students exceeds 85 percent, GI Bill students may continue to receive benefits as long as they remain enrolled in the program.
Students who receive benefits under VR&E or DEA programs count as supported students under the 85/15 rule, but they may receive benefits even when enrolling in a program that exceeds 85 percent supported students.
|Additional 85/15 Webpages|
|85/15 FAQS||Full-Time Equivalency||Suspension and Review|
|Restricted Aid||Supported and Non-Supported Students||Reporting Requirements|
|35 Percent Exemption||DoD Exemption||Education Service Waiver|