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I Got Kicked Out of ROTC and DFAS Wants Me to Repay My Tuition

Written by Steve Rhode

Question:

Dear Steve,

I had a full scholarship to attend university via the ROTC program. I was performing well, no health issue, but I was kicked out under the accusation that I had “Created a negative environment for other cadets”.

I went through the appeals process, and the board voted unanimously to drop the charge and keep me in the program. However, the officer who had accused me had veto power in the appeals case and vetoed the decision.

I hired a lawyer who took the issue to DFAS who said they couldn’t make a decision on the case. I am wondering what other resources I have, as I am disputing not only the charge, but the veto power of the accusing officer (this, to me, was unjust).

All I want is to appear before an impartial court on this matter, as I’m sure the ruling will be the same as my original trial. I’m wondering what my options are. Needless to say, there is no way I can pay this off.

A

Answer:

Dear A,

I’m assuming since DFAS (Defense Finance and Accounting Service) is involved that the military is going after you for previously paid tuition. They seem like the wrong entity to try to appeal to.

At the very least you should consider speaking with an attorney who is experienced in ROTC disenrollment situations. I have no knowledge about these attorneys but you might want to look them over and schedule a consultation to get some professional advice about your situation. Look here, here, or here.

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About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

4 Comments

  • Hello A,

    I understand how difficult your situation is. I had an NROTC scholarship that I was ordered to reimburse after I was summarily and unjustly disenrolled from the NROTC unit. I became a lawyer, and filed suit against the United States. To the best of my knowledge, I am the first and only lawyer who has sued the United States to force it to honor its obligation to pay out on an ROTC scholarship. I got my debt erased and the government returned the money that it exacted from me over the years. I would be honored to review your situation to see if you have a case. If you would like, you can look me up at chivalryllc.net. Best of luck to you.

    Yours truly,
    Jason

    • Jason –

      Perhaps you can help in my situation. My son voluntarily disenrolled in Spring 2013 from AROTC after 2.5 years. He refused a board hearing and has been paying on the debt since graduation. Original bill ~96k down to ~76k now. Is there any way to get this compromised? He typically submits a financial hardship form annually. Annual salary ~25k.

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