Federal Aid Refund | Mount St. Joseph University

Return to Title IV Policy – Return of Federal Student Aid Funds

Title IV program funds are required to be returned when a student withdraws from all course work during a term or when he/she fails to earn any credit hours in a term in which the student was registered and in which he/she received federal student aid.

The Title IV programs that are covered by this policy are: Federal Pell Grants, Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants, TEACH Grants, Federal Direct Loans, Federal Direct PLUS Loans, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG), and Federal Perkins Loans.

Withdrawal Policy
Students who completely withdraw, ceasing enrollment in all classes at the Mount during the semester, must complete a Withdrawal Form and withdraw from all classes on an add/drop form. These forms are available in Student Administrative Services. Failure to process a drop form will result in a grade of "FA" (failure due to absence) for all courses taken during the semester, and the student may be subject to suspension or dismissal.

MSJ Refund Policy
The requirements for returning Title IV funds when a student withdraws is separate from the tuition reduction schedule of the Mount. Therefore, students may still owe funds to the school to cover unpaid institutional charges. The Mount will also charge the student for any Title IV program funds that we are required to return. The Mount’s tuition reduction schedule can be found at https://www.msj.edu/tuition-aid/policies-rules-regulations/tuition-reduction-schedule/.

Complete Withdrawal from the Mount during the Semester
Though aid is normally posted to a student’s account at the start of each semester, federal aid funds are “earned” as the period is completed. If a student withdraws during the semester, the amount of Title IV program assistance that is earned up to that point is determined by a specific formula. If the aid that has been disbursed by the time of withdrawal is less than the amount that the student earned, they may be able to receive those additional funds as a post-withdrawal disbursement. If the student received more assistance than was earned, the excess funds must be returned by the school and/or the student to the federal government. The Mount must return the Title IV funds within 45 days of the date the school determines the student withdrew.

Through the 60% point in each semester, a pro rata schedule is used to determine how much federal student aid a student has earned at the time of withdrawal. If the day the student withdraws occurs on or before the student completed 60% of the term, the percentage of federal funds earned is equal to the percentage of the term that has been completed. After the 60% point, they have earned all of the federal aid funds for that term.

For example, if a student completed 30% of the semester at the time of withdrawal, they would have earned 30% of the federal student aid they were awarded. In this example, if the student had received $1000 in federal aid, only $300 of those funds would have been earned, resulting in $700 being returned to the federal government.

The percentage of the term completed is determined by the number of calendar days (not class days) completed at the time of withdrawal divided by the total number of days in the term. The withdrawal date used is either:

  • the date that the student began the withdrawal process
  • the date that the student otherwise provided official notification to the school of the intent to withdraw;
  • in special circumstances such as a serious illness or accident, a date determined by the school;
  • in the event the student failed to earn any credit hours during the term, the midpoint (50%) of the semester is used or a later date if attendance can be documented.

Order in which unearned funds are returned to the federal aid programs:

  1. Unsubsidized Direct Stafford Loan
  2. Subsidized Direct Stafford Loan
  3. Federal Perkins Loan
  4. Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan
  5. Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan
  6. Federal Pell Grant
  7. Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant
  8. Federal TEACH Grant
  9. Iraq & Afghanistan Service Grant

Post-Withdrawal Disbursement
If the student did not receive all of the funds that were earned prior to withdrawing, a post-withdrawal disbursement may be due. If the post-withdrawal disbursement includes loan funds, the student must give permission before the funds can be disbursed. The Mount may automatically use all or a portion of the post-withdrawal disbursement of grant funds for tuition, fees, and room and board charges. Permission is required to use the post-withdrawal grant disbursement for all other school charges. Students will be notified of post-withdrawal disbursement eligibility within 30 days of the date of withdrawal determination.

Withdrawing also affects your ability to make Satisfactory Academic Progress. You can review that policy at http://www.msj.edu/tuition-aid/policies-rules-regulations/satisfactory-academic-progress/.

If you have questions about your Title IV program funds, you can call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FEDAID (1-800-433-3243). TTY users may call 1-800-730-8913. Information is also available on Student Aid on the Web at www.studentaid.ed.gov.