Servicemember holding books in front of American flag

Veterans Benefits & Yellow Ribbon Program

With nine military bases in our backyard, California Western is a natural choice for service members pursuing a legal education.  The California Western JD Program is approved for the training of veterans and eligible persons under the provisions of Title 38, United States Code.

General GI Bill® Education Benefits

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). 


Veterans and eligible dependents admitted to California Western School of Law will find that their Veterans education benefits are a valuable resource in paying for law school. Education benefits may be used independently or paired with scholarships, Federal Work-Study, and student loans to help meet most education-related costs.

You will also find that California Western School of Law is committed to your success and proudly participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program at the 100% level, and we award Yellow Ribbon Program benefits to all eligible students.  Read on for more information about how the Yellow Ribbon Programs works at California Western School of Law.

Education Benefit Types and Amounts

Chapter 30 Montgomery GI Bill® – (MGIB), Chapter 1606 (Montgomery GI Bill® Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR), Chapter 32 Veterans Education Assistance Program – (VEAP), and Chapter 35 Survivors and Dependents Assistance Program (DEA) pay benefits directly to eligible students. The amount to be received is specific to the chapter and to the student. Information is available on the VA website at Payment Rates.

The Chapter 33 (Post-9/11 GI Bill®)  and the Fry Scholarship pay tuition and fees directly to the school up to an annual tuition/fee allotment, and a monthly housing allowance and up to $1,000 per year for books and supplies to the student. The amount paid is based on the student’s level of eligibility, 

NOTE for Survivors and Dependents about Chapter 35 Survivors and Dependents Assistance Program (DEA) and the Fry Scholarship: You may be eligible for one or both of these programs. In most situations, you will be required to make an irrevocable election between the DEA program and Fry Scholarship when you apply. 

Chapter 31 Veteran Readiness and Employment (formerly Vocational Rehabilitation) benefit amounts are determined by the VR&E Counselor on an individual basis for each recipient. For general information about what VR&E will cover, see: VR&E.


How to Apply for VA Benefits

The Veteran’s Administration determines your eligibility for education benefits. You may wish to review the types of benefits available and the eligibility requirements for the specific chapters. Detailed information is available on the VA website at: Eligibility.

The VA will also help you decide which education benefits to use. You can ask them a question online through Ask VA call them at 888-442-4551 (TTY: 711). If you are overseas, call +1-918-781-5678.  The VA is available to help from Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. ET.

Once you have determined the type of benefits that apply to you, apply online on the VA website at After you have been approved for education benefits, please email a copy of your Certificate of Eligibility (COE) Letter, from the VA, to JavaScript Required

Veterans Readiness and Employment, formerly Vocational Rehabilitation, recipients will find information about eligibility and applying for benefits on the VA website at: VR&E. If you need assistance or documentation for your VR&E Counselor, please contact us at JavaScript Required. Once your Counselor has approved your benefits for law school, please email your approval letter to the Financial Aid office at JavaScript Required


Request Certification

Use the Veterans Education Benefits Certificaiton Request Form to request certification of your attendance and costs at California Western.  The School Certifying Official will continue to report your enrollment to the VA while you remain enrolled. If you wish to pause using your benefits, please notify the School Certifying Official at JavaScript Required well in advance of the start of classes for the term(s) you do not want certified. 


General Information

To check the status of your benefits, change your address & more, use the eBenefits portal or call the VA at 1.888.442.4551.

Post-9/11 GI Bill® students who receive Monthly Housing Allowance (MHA) and/or kicker payments must verify their enrollment to continue receiving their payments. See Enrollment Verification for information about when and how to complete this requirement.

Changes in enrollment after classes begin may result in increased or reduced eligibility for benefits and may result in the need to return some, or all, of your VA funds. Contact the School Certifying Official immediately upon deciding to alter your enrollment for a given semester.

Payments to the school may be deferred for students who will receive full coverage of tuition and fees through some combination of student aid and VA education benefits. When you receive your tuition/fee invoice, it will include a link to our Tuition Deferment Form which you will want to complete and submit to Student Accounts.

Scholarships, Federal Work-Study, and Student Loans are available to all students who meet the eligibility criteria.  College Financing Plans will be available on the Documents and Messages screen of the Financial Aid Portal

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available on the official U.S. government website:

Yellow Ribbon at California Western School of Law

As part of our commitment to veterans and their dependents, California Western School of Law participates at the 100% level in the Yellow Ribbon Program, which is a provision of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008. As part of the program, degree-granting institutions of higher learning in the U.S. voluntarily enter into an agreement with the Veterans Administration to help fund tuition expenses for eligible veterans not otherwise covered by scholarships or the annual tuition allotment in the Post-9/11 GI Bill® or Fry Scholarship. 

California Western offers Yellow Ribbon Program funds to all eligible admitted and continuing JD candidates. Yellow Ribbon funds, combined with the Post-9/11 GI Bill® or Fry Scholarship annual allowance, will cover full tuition and fees for as long as the student remains eligible.  To receive Yellow Ribbon Benefits at California Western School of Law, you must be admitted and eligible for Post-9/11 benefits or the Fry Scholarship at the 100% level. Students awarded will continue to receive Yellow Ribbon benefits while California Western participates in the program, while the student remains continuously enrolled, and while they continue to meet all applicable eligibility criteria.

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). 

CWSL Financial Aid Office

To request certification of your attendance and costs at California Western, please submit a Veterans Education Benefits Request Form.

Feel free to to contact Associate Director of Financial Aid and School Certifying Official, Kelly Fernando, if you have additional questions about benefits.

Contact Us
Attn: Kelly Fernando
Associate Director, Financial Aid Office
225 Cedar Street
San Diego, CA 92101