Receiving an Overpayment of Funds

If you receive more aid than you were supposed to, you must give it back. Students who have received financial aid and withdraw from the institution during the academic term or payment period, or were over awarded, or if eligibility changes, may need to return or repay some or all of the funds received, which may result in a debt owed to the institution. Financial aid recipients will be billed for any unearned financial aid and resulting unpaid university charges. 

RETURN OF TITLE IV AID: The law specifies how your school must determine the amount of Title IV program assistance that you earn if you withdraw from school. The Title IV programs that are covered by this law are: Federal Pell Grants, Subsidized and Unsubsidized Direct Loans, PLUS Loans, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOGs), Federal Perkins Loans, Teacher Education and Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant, and in some cases, certain state grant aid (LEAP/SLEAP), GEAR UP grants, and SSS grants to students.

When you withdraw during your payment period, the amount of Title IV program assistance that you have earned up to that point is determined by a specific formula. If you received (or your school or parent received on your behalf) less assistance than the amount that you earned, you may be able to receive those additional funds. If you received more assistance than you earned, the excess funds must be returned by the school and/or you.

The amount of assistance that you have earned is determined on a pro rata basis. For example, if you completed 30% of your payment period, you earn 30% of the assistance you were originally scheduled to receive. Once you have completed more than 60% of the payment period, you earn all the assistance that you were scheduled to receive for that period.

If you did not receive all of the funds that you earned, you may be due a post-withdrawal disbursement. If the post-withdrawal disbursement includes loan funds, you may choose to decline the loan funds so that you don’t incur additional debt. Your school may automatically use all or a portion of your post-withdrawal disbursement (including loan funds, if you accept them) for tuition, fees, and room and board charges (as contracted with the school).

There may be some Title IV funds that you were scheduled to receive that you cannot earn once you withdraw because of other eligibility requirements.

If you receive (or your school or parent receive on your behalf) excess Title IV program funds that must be returned, your school must return a portion of the excess equal to the lesser of

  1. your institutional charges multiplied by the unearned percentage of your funds, or
  2. the entire amount of excess funds.