Return of Title IV Funds

Process Overview
This policy is effective for withdrawal dates of July 1, 2006, and thereafter. Ivy Tech Community College will calculate a refund to any student who is a Title IV recipient (except Federal Work Study) and withdraws completely from or stops attending all classes enrolled before the 60 percent point (in calendar days) in the period of enrollment.The refund applies to institutional charges, which are defined as tuition, fees, books, and reasonable supplies and equipment (including consumable fees). These fees will be determined by the charges made to the student's account. It does not include items such as late registration, test-out fees, deferment charges, shipping charges, etc.

The refund dictates the amount of Title IV aid that must be returned to the federal government by the school and the student. The federal formula is applicable to students receiving Title IV financial aid, if the student withdraws on or before the 60% completion point of the semester. The percentage of Title IV aid to be returned is equal to the number of calendar days remaining in the semester divided by the number of calendar days in the semester. Scheduled breaks of five (5) or more consecutive days are excluded when determining the total number of days in the payment period.

Policies
Ivy Tech Community College is not required to take attendance. As per federal regulations, the calculation will be performed within 45 calendar days of the date of the school's determination that a student withdrew. The date the school determines that a student completely withdrew will be one of the following:

  • the date the student initiates the withdrawal from all enrolled classes for the term,
  • the date the student initiates the withdrawal from the last enrolled class for the term, or
  • the date the last failing grade is submitted to the Registrar's office.

Official Withdrawal Date
The student may begin the withdrawal process in writing or verbally. The student's official withdrawal date is the earlier of (1) when the student initiates written notification or (2) when the office responsible for accepting official notification receives the notification. If a withdrawal is taken verbally, the designated office must document the date and other pertinent information and keep this notification in the student's record. If verbal notification was given, the designated office will use this as the official withdrawal date. If the student begins the withdrawal process orally, the designated office can ask the student to come in and complete the withdrawal process in writing, but it is not required.

Unofficial Withdrawal Date
If the student does not officially notify the College of his/her intent to withdraw, the College will use the midpoint of the semester, or if later than the midpoint, the last date an academically related activity can be documented by the institution. An academically related activity includes, but is not limited to, an exam, a tutorial, computer-assisted instruction, academic counseling, academic advisement, turning in a class assignment or attending a study group that is assigned by the institution. If the student continues to attend the institution after notifying the institution and before actually withdrawing, the subsequent attendance may be taken into account by documenting a last date of attendance at an academically related activity. A student's certification of attendance alone is not acceptable documentation; such a certification must be supported by institutional documentation of the student's last date of attendance at an academically related activity.

Post Withdrawal Disbursements
For the student who has withdrawn, disbursement of earned aid that has not been disbursed before the student withdrew is a "post-withdrawal disbursement". An institution may apply a post-withdrawal disbursement to a student's account to cover institutional charges and other charges for which the student has submitted appropriate authorization. Any amount not applied to institutional charges must be offered to the student (or parent, in the case of a PLUS loan) as a direct payment. An institution may apply a post-withdrawal disbursement to pay minor prior-year charges, as long as the institution has the necessary authorization from the student (or parent, in the case of PLUS proceeds). The institution must offer a post-withdrawal disbursement in writing to the student (or parent, in the case of a PLUS loan) but is not required to make the disbursement if the student does not reply to the offer within fourteen (14) calendar days from the date of the offer. If the institution receives a late response (after the 14 day deadline) accepting a post-withdrawal disbursement, the institution can choose whether or not to disburse. The school must respond in writing to the late request if the decision is to not disburse the funds.

Overpayment
Federal regulations require that a student repay the portion of the original grant overpayment that is in excess of half of the total Title IV grant funds that he or she received or could have received. The student does not have to repay grant overpayments of $50.00 or less.

If a student owes a grant overpayment, the student must be notified by the College within 45 days of the date the school determines that a student completely withdrew. The student must be notified that a grant overpayment is due and his/her eligibility for additional Title IV funds will end if the student fails to take positive action by the 45th day following the date the school sent or was required to send notification to the student. If the student fails to pay the overpayment amount in full to the school by the 45th day, the student's overpayment will be reported to the Department of Education and referred to the Department for collection. A student can contact ED Collections by calling 1-800-621-3115 or by sending an e-mail to DCS_HELP@ed.gov. A student may also write ED Collections at the following address:

US Department of Education, Student Financial Assistance Programs, PO Box 4222, Iowa City, Iowa 52245

If the student does not take action during the 45-day period, the student becomes ineligible for Title IV funds on the 46th day from the earlier of the date the school sends a notification to the student of the overpayment or the date the school was required to notify the student of the overpayment. The school may continue to accept payment on an overpayment after the overpayment has been referred to the Department. If the school accepts a check from a student made to the Department of Education the school must note the student's name and social security number on the check, indicate the type of Title IV grant, and forward the payment to ED Collections at:

US Department of Education, National Payment Center, PO Box 4169, Greenville, Texas 75403-4169

The school may also reduce the student's award(s) and return the funds through the regular electronic process.

Order of Return of Funds
It is the College's responsibility to return Title IV refunds in the proper order. Those funds must be credited to the outstanding balance for the semester of enrollment for which return of funds is required in the following order:

  1. Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans
  2. Subsidized Federal Stafford Loans
  3. Federal PLUS loans received on behalf of a student
  4. Federal Pell Grants
  5. National SMART Grant
  6. Federal SEOG

Repayment
It is College policy to prevent repayment situations by withholding all payments to students until after the refund period. Final awards are made based on enrollment at the end of the 100 percent refund period for a standard 16 week semester. Since the Summer semester is shorter than the standard semester, final awards are based on enrollment at the end of the 100 percent refund for a standard summer term for each Region. It is the position of Ivy Tech Community College that if any admitted student has received valid financial aid awards, has registered for classes, has attended each of the registered classes at least once, and has not dropped courses until after the refund period, the student has completed his/her contract for financial aid and is eligible to receive all financial aid dollars.

A repayment relates to any cash disbursed directly to the student for payment of non-institutional educational costs such as living expenses. A repayment is the amount of cash disbursements that the school decided was greater than the student's expenses while enrolled. Repayments are often caused when a student withdraws or drops out before the end of the payment period, thereby resulting in grant payments that exceed the amount the student is eligible to receive. If the student received Title IV funds (except Federal Work Study or Loan funds), a portion of the repayment must be returned to those programs. Federal Work Study is excluded because it has been earned by the student; Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) funds are excluded because the student is already obligated to repay those funds to the lender.

Title IV funds cannot be used if a student never attends the class. Simply enrolling for classes does not trigger the use of those dollars. The College must be able to document class attendance before Title IV funds can be used to defray student expenses of any kind. Periodically, cases are tested to insure compliance with the regulations. Refund and repayment worksheet calculations must be made for all Title IV recipients who either officially or unofficially withdraw from 100 percent of enrolled classes for the term.