Chicago – Attorney General Kwame Raoul today, as part of a bipartisan coalition of 42 attorneys general, is urging the U.S. Supreme Court to protect veterans’ rights and benefits, including the Post 9/11 Montgomery GI Bill educational benefit.
In the brief, Raoul and the coalition support a Virginia U.S. Army veteran in Rudisill v. McDonough, who was denied his Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), even though veterans with multiple requisite periods of military service can earn up to 48 months of educational benefits.
“Individuals who serve our country should not be denied benefits when they return home, which is why I am urging the Supreme Court to protect the educational benefits veterans have earned through their military service,” Raoul said. “I remain dedicated to ensuring veterans and their families receive all of the benefits they have sacrificed so much for.”
James Rudisill is a Virginia resident and decorated U.S. Army veteran of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. After his first tour, Rudisill used his Montgomery GI Bill benefits to further his education, successfully completed his undergraduate degree, and returned to the U.S. Army as a commissioned officer. Following his third overseas tour, Rudisill was accepted into the Yale Divinity School, with a goal of returning to the armed forces yet again, as a chaplain.
When the VA denied Rudisill his GI Bill benefits, the decision was overturned by multiple courts. However, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ultimately upheld the VA’s decision, robbing thousands of veterans of the GI benefits they earned while serving their country in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Joining Raoul in submitting the brief were attorneys general from Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, the Northern Mariana Islands, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.