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Reducing credits - return of financial aid

If you find it necessary to withdraw from all or some of your classes, you may be required to return all or a portion of the financial aid you've received for that semster to the government and/or University programs. 

If your circumstances require you to withdraw from all classes, you are encouraged to contact your academic advisor and the Financial Aid Office so your decision will be based on a clear understanding of the consequences of withdrawing from all classes.

Official Withdrawal:  to officially withdraw the student must manually cancel or drop their classes in their MyU portal, whether for current or future terms.  The date of withdrawal will be stored on your academic record.

Unofficial Withdrawal:  If the student does not formally withdraw, but stops attending or participating in classes and does not successfully complete any credits, the Financial Aid office will calculate their financial aid earned.  The calculation will be based on the students last date of class attendance or participation as determined by their instructor and bill the student for the unearned portion of the financial aid they received. Instructors must indicate the last date of attendance (participation) on the grade submission report when reporting an F or N grade.  In the event the school is unable to determine an unofficial withdrawal date we will default to the federally allowed 50% point in time for the calculation for the return of funds.

The federal formula requires a return of Title IV aid if you received federal assistance in the form of a Pell Grant, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG), Federal Direct Subsidized/Unsubsidized Loan or Federal Direct PLUS Loan and withdrew on or before completing 60 percent of the semester. 

The federal government mandates that if you withdraw from all classes, you may only keep the financial aid you have "earned" up to the time of withdrawal. The Title IV funds that were disbursed in excess of the earned amount must be returned to the federal government by the University and/or you. If you received a credit balance check for financial aid that was credited earlier in the semester (which was to be used for personal expenses or non-University housing expenses), you may be required to return a portion of those funds to the University. This portion represents funds that were intended to pay your education-related expenses through the end of the semester. The amount to be returned to the University will be calculated from the date on which you officially withdraw (officially, unofficially, or express intent to withdraw).

Determining Aid Earned

To determine the amount of aid you earned up to the time of withdrawal, the Office of Student Finance will divide the number of calendar days you attended classes by the total number of calendar days in the semester (less any scheduled break of 5 days or more). The resulting percentage is then multiplied by the total federal funds that were disbursed to your University student account for the semester. This calculation determines the amount of aid that you are allowed to keep. The unearned amount of aid must be returned to the federal government within 45 days from the date the school determined the student withdrew or ceased attendance.   The student may have an obligation to repay funds that were paid directly to him/her. If the university returns funds that were applied to the student’s account, a balance due the university by the student will result. Federal student aid may not cover all unpaid institutional charges due the university upon withdrawal.  Failure to repay will prevent future registration at the university and initiate delinquent collection procedures, which will adversely affect the student’s credit rating.  If a credit balance is due to the student, funds will be disbursed as soon as possible and no later than 14 days after the calculation has been completed.  A notification letter will be sent to your permanent address if your financial aid is reduced and a return is required.  

A student may be owed a disbursement of Title IV funds after the withdrawal date if the conditions for Post Withdrawal Disbursements are met according to the code of federal regulations 34 CFR 668- 22(1)(2) and (3) and 34 CFR 690.61(a). A post withdrawal disbursement, whether credited to the students account or disbursed to the student or parent directly, will be made from available grant funds before available loan funds. In cases where a post-withdrawal disbursement is due, the university will notify the student of the amount and ask for consent to disburse these funds.  The student has 14 days to respond to the notification and if no response is received within the allotted period, the loan will be cancelled.

Returned Title IV Aid Allocation

Funds that are returned to the federal government are used to reduce the outstanding balances in individual federal programs. Financial aid returned by you and/or your parent or the University must be allocated in the following order:

  1. Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loan
  2. Federal Subsidized Direct Loan
  3. Federal Direct PLUS Loan
  4. Federal Pell Grant
  5. Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  6. Federal TEACH Grant
  7. Other federal loan or grant assistance

If you cancel a portion of your enrollment or completely withdraw from classes during the semester, you may be required to return all or a portion of the state of Minnesota financial aid to the state financial aid program from which the aid was received. This may include but is not limited to:

  • Minnesota State Grant
  • Student Educational Loan Fund
  • Minnesota State Child Care Grant
  • Minnesota Public Service Safety Officer Program

If you withdraw from all of your courses or drop credits while maintaining enrollment, state funds are subject to a worksheet calculation based on tuition and/or fee changes, in addition to other contingencies. A notification letter will be sent to your permanent address if your financial aid is reduced and a return is required.

If you completely withdraw on or before completing 60 percent of the semester, you may be required to return all or a portion of your University financial aid to the financial aid program from which the aid was received. This may include but is not limited to:

To determine the amount of institutional aid earned up to the time of withdrawal, the number of calendar days you attended classes will be divided by the total number of calendar days in the semester (less any scheduled break of five days or more). The resulting percentage is then multiplied by the total University funds that you accepted. This calculation determines the amount of aid that you earned and are allowed to keep. The unearned amount of aid must be returned to the institutional program(s) by the University. A notification letter will be sent to your permanent address if your financial aid is reduced and a return is required.

If you receive an approved Tuition Refund Appeal, your university financial aid may be reversed accordingly.

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