Return of Title IV Funds

Return Policy & Procedure

Financial aid funds are awarded to a student under the assumption that the student will attend school for the entire period for which the assistance is awarded.

When a student withdraws from the institution or from the semester, drops courses, or fails to participate in courses, that student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of aid they were originally awarded. If a recipient of Title IV grant or loan funds withdraws from a school after beginning attendance, the amount of Title IV grant or loan assistance earned by the student must be determined. If the amount disbursed to the student is greater than the amount the student earned, the unearned funds must be returned. If the amount disbursed to the student is less than the amount the student earned, and for which the student is otherwise eligible, he or she is eligible to receive a post-withdrawal disbursement of the earned aid that was not received. If your post-withdrawal disbursement includes loan funds, Bluefield College must get your permission before it can disburse them. You may choose to decline some or all of the loan funds so that you do not incur additional debt. There may be some Title IV funds that you were scheduled to receive that cannot be disbursed to you once you withdraw because of other eligibility requirements. Additionally, if your financial aid file is incomplete, some or all of your aid may be canceled.

Anytime a student begins attendance in at least one course, but does not begin attendance in all the courses he or she was scheduled to attend, regardless of whether the student is a withdrawal, the school must check to see if it is necessary to recalculate the student’s eligibility for Federal, State, and Institutional funds based on a revised enrollment status and cost of education.

If the student is a withdrawal, this recalculation must be done before performing a Return of Title IV Funds calculation, and the school must use the recalculated amounts of aid in the Return calculation.

The withdrawal date for a student who officially withdraws will be the date provided by the Registrar. For a student who leaves the College without notice or ceases participating (considered unofficial withdraw or a drop-out), his or her withdrawal date will be the midpoint of the semester, or alternatively, the College may use the last date of attendance or participation in an academically-related activity if we have documentation he or she participated and that the activity was academic in nature. The refund calculation is based on the number of calendar days attended within the semester or term, divided by the total number of calendar days in the semester or term, excluding any break of five days or more. This ratio will produce a percent of attendance and a percent of non-attendance, and thus percentages of earned aid and unearned aid. The College will charge back to the student (by removing financial aid awards posted to the account) amounts equal to the percent of unearned aid and return that amount to the government funding sources and financial aid programs.

For federal awards, the money will be returned to the U.S. Department of Education programs in the following order until the required amount of unearned funds have been returned:

  1. Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loans
  2. Subsidized Federal Direct Loans
  3. Plus (parent) Loans
  4. Federal Pell Grants
  5. Federal SEOG

If the student received aid in excess of direct costs, and thus received a credit balance refund check from BC Central, the student is responsible for returning their share of the unearned aid; however, if the credit balance check received was in the form of federal loan proceeds, the Department of Education will allow the student to repay in the normal method of loan repayment in accordance with the terms of the promissory note. That is, you make scheduled payments to the holder of the loan over a period of time. Any amount of unearned grant funds that you must return is called an overpayment. The maximum amount of a grant overpayment that you must repay is half of the grant funds you received or were scheduled to receive. The student has 45 days to repay the money or make arrangements with either Bluefield College or the federal government for repayment. If the student does not comply with repayment requirements, he or she will be reported to the Department of Education and lose eligibility for future Title IV funds until payment has been made in full.

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