Section 31-6-6Educational benefits for spouses and children of partially disabled veterans; reinstatement of entitlements.
(a) The spouse and children of any veteran who is suffering from 20 to 90 percent service-connected disability brought about from service in the Armed Forces of the United States, or the unmarried widow or widower and children of a deceased veteran who was suffering from 20 percent or more of service-connected disability at the time of death, provided such disabilities as are mentioned herein are incurred from military service, as established by the State Department of Veterans' Affairs, shall be entitled to the following educational advantages and opportunities:
(1) The spouse or unmarried widow or widower, as the case may be, shall be entitled to up to 27 months of schooling or the equivalent of 27 months if enrolled part-time, in any Alabama state-supported institution of higher learning, college, or university, or to a prescribed course in any Alabama state-supported trade school without the payment of any tuition, fee, or books. One change of program will be allowed without counseling. It is provided, however, that all training received at state institutions of higher learning or state trade schools under this subdivision must be completed within a period of six years after the beginning date of such two-year course or such prescribed course.
(2) Each child of such disabled veteran shall be entitled to five standard academic years, or the equivalent of 45 months if enrolled part-time, in any Alabama state-supported institution of higher learning, college, or university, or to a prescribed course at an Alabama state-supported trade school. If the course of training at the trade school does not require the full time to which such child is entitled hereunder, then the remaining entitlement may be taken in a state-supported college or university only, without payment of any tuition, fees, or books. One change of program will be allowed without counseling. Training under this subdivision must be initiated prior to the child's twenty-sixth birthday, and must be completed within eight years after its initiation, except for delays caused by military service during the training period, and in no case may training be received under this section beyond the thirty-fourth birthday of such child.
(b) Except as provided in Section 31-6-11(e), the educational benefits provided by this section to spouses, children, and unmarried widows and widowers making application for benefits for the first time beginning with the fall term of the 2014-2015 academic year, and thereafter, shall be limited to undergraduate courses of study only, and the value of tuition paid shall be limited to the in-state tuition rate of the Alabama state-supported institution of higher learning, college, or university attended.
(c) The benefits provided under this section shall be available in addition to federal government benefits. Any child, spouse, or unmarried widow or widower who was denied full entitlement, 27 or 45 months, whichever the case may be, shall have the remainder of their entitlement reinstated under this chapter.
(Acts 1951, No. 47, p. 259, §3; Acts 1957, No. 617, p. 883, §3; Acts 1966, Ex. Sess., No. 206, p. 250, §3; Acts 1969, No. 418, p. 816, §2; Acts 1973, No. 1275, p. 2177, §3; Acts 1978, No. 585, p. 678; Acts 1985, No. 85-758, p. 1262, §1; Act 2009-559, p. 1606, §1; Act 2014-177, §1.)