Financial Aid

Federal Aid Withdrawal Policy

Federal regulations mandate how Union determines the amount of Title IV program assistance earned if a student withdraws from school. The federal programs covered by Title IV regulations are: Federal PELL Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOGs), Direct Loans and Parent PLUS Loans.

When a student withdraws during a payment period (fall, winter, or spring term), the amount of Title IV program assistance earned up to that point is determined by a formula provided by the U.S. Department of Education. These regulations are separate from, and should not be confused with, Union's tuition refund policy. The amount of assistance earned is determined on a pro rata basis. For example, if 30% of the payment period has passed, 30% of the federal assistance originally scheduled to pay is earned. Once more than 60% of the payment period has passed, 100% of the scheduled federal assistance for that period is earned.

For the 2023/2024 academic year this means that any student withdrawing during the fall term prior to October 23, 2023 will require a refund of a portion, if not all, of their federal funds. Similarly, refunds of federal funds will be necessary for students who withdraw during winter term prior to February 19, 2024, and for those who withdraw during spring term prior to May 15, 2024.

The following example illustrates the federal refund calculation. In this example, the student withdraws during the winter term on February 3, 2024. Having completed 32 days in a term of 77 days, the student is eligible for 41.6% of the federal funds (32/77).

Title IV Aid Awarded and Paid (grants and loans)

  • PELL Grant $1,500
  • SEOG Grant $333
  • Subsidized Federal Direct Loan $1,814
  • Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan $660
  • PLUS Loan $4,500

Total Federal Funds Paid :$8,807

Student's Eligibility: x 41.6%
Funds Student is Eligible to Keep : $3663.71
Unearned Title IV Funds: $5143.29

When refunds are necessary, as in the example above, the federal government requires that loan funds be refunded first and in the following order: (1) Unsubsidized Federal Direct Loan, (2) Subsidized Federal Direct Loan, and (3) Parent PLUS Loan. If further refunds are necessary then grants are refunded.

There are rare circumstances when students may not receive all of the funds they have earned. An example of this would be if a student loan has been originated and certified, but withdrawal from school occurs prior to the funds posting to the student's account. Students may be eligible for a portion of the funds en route to the student account, but not the entire loan amount. When this takes place a post-withdrawal disbursement may be due. If the post-withdrawal disbursement includes loan funds, the Financial Aid Office will contact the student to notify them of their eligibility. After notification, the student must respond to the Financial Aid Office, in writing, their desire to accept or decline some or all of the loan funds. Again, the requirements for Title IV program funds are separate from Union's tuition refund policy. Accepting post-withdrawal loan funds can help students cover any tuition, fees, and room and board charges they are responsible for. For information on Union's Tuition Refund Policy, please see the Bursar's Office website.

In addition to the refund of federal funds, a refund of a portion, if not all of the student's institutional scholarship(s) may be required. If institutional scholarship funds have been awarded, please schedule an appointment with a financial aid counselor prior to withdrawing to determine the status of these funds.

If you have questions about Title IV program funds, please call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at (800) 433-3243, TTY users may call (800) 730-8913. Information is also available at Federal Student Aid.