Students receiving federal financial aid who withdraw from or stop attending all courses may be required to return a portion of financial aid received.
Federal regulations [HEA Section 484B, 485(a)(1)(F), 34 CFR 668.22], referred to as the Return of Title IV Funds policy, require Missouri State University to calculate a refund and repayment of federal aid received by students who withdraw prior to the 60% point of a term for which he/she has received federal aid. The Title IV (federal) programs under this policy are: Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG), Teacher Educational Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant and Federal Direct Loans (Subsidized, Unsubsidized and PLUS). According to the Return of Title IV (R2T4) Funds policy, the student is allowed to retain only the amount of Title IV financial aid that was earned. If a student withdraws or stops participating in classes, a portion of the aid received is considered to be unearned and must be returned to the Title IV programs from which it was received. If the R2T4 calculation results in unearned aid that must be returned, both the school and the student are responsible for returning funds.
Students wishing to completely withdraw from the University should refer to the Procedures for Adding and Dropping Classes (and Withdrawing).
A student who fails all of their classes in a term may be subject to the R2T4 calculation. If a student “earned” at least one of their F’s (i.e. they participated in class until the end of the semester and received an F for poor performance), then no calculation is required. However, if the student failed all classes because they stopped attending at some point in the semester, then a R2T4 calculation is required based on the last documented date of attendance. If a last date of attendance cannot be determined, the 50% point of the term will be used as the withdrawal date, and the unearned aid will be 50%. At the end of the term, the Financial Aid Office will notify students who have received all F's of the requirement to perform the R2T4 calculation.
Upon determination that a student has withdrawn, the Financial Aid Office will process the R2T4 calculation.
The following steps are used to calculate the amount of aid a student has earned and how much must be returned (if any).
Determination of the Withdrawal Date
For Title IV purposes, the last date of academic attendance is one of the following:
- The date the formal withdrawal process beings
- The date the student otherwise gives officials notice of intent to withdraw (e.g., letter, withdrawal form, in-person)
- The mid-point of the term, or
- The last documented date of attendance in an academically-related activity (e.g., documented attendance in a class, lab or submission of an assignment in an on-line course)
Determination of the amount of aid the student earned
The percentage of aid the student has earned is equal to the percentage of the semester (payment period) the student has completed. The percentage of the payment period completed is calculated by dividing the total number of calendar days completed (first class day to the last date of attendance) by the total number of calendar days in the term. The percentage of Title IV assistance to which the student is entitled (has "earned") is equal to this completed percentage up to 60%. If the withdrawal occurs after the 60% point, the percentage is equal to 100%. The amount of aid the student has earned is calculated by multiplying this percentage by the total amount of Title IV aid disbursed (and could have been disbursed) to the student.
Determination of the amount of aid the student did not earn
The amount of Title IV aid which must be returned is based on the percentage of unearned aid. That percentage is computed by subtracting the earned aid percentage from 100%. If a student did not receive all of the funds that they earned, they may be due a post-withdrawal disbursement. If the calculation determines that a student is due a post-withdrawal disbursement, the school must obtain the student's permission to disburse any loan funds. Furthermore, the school may keep all or a portion of grant funds to pay for any tuition, fees, and room and board charges that are due.
Determination of the amount of aid the University must return
The University is required to return the lesser of the unearned aid percentage applied to institutional charges or the unearned aid percentage applied to the total. Title IV aid received within 45 days of the date of determination of the withdrawal. Unearned aid will be returned to the aid programs in the following order:
- Unsubsidized Direct Loans
- Subsidized Direct Loans
- Pell Grant
- TEACH Grant
The University will bill the student for any account balance created when Title IV aid is returned.
Financial Aid Overpayments and Loss of Eligibility for Title IV Aid
Within 30 days of the determination that the student owes Title IV funds, the student will be sent a letter notifying them of the balance they owe. Students are given 45 days from the date the notification was sent to repay the debt to Missouri State University. Any unpaid accounts will be reported to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS). Any student reported to have received an overpayment is not eligible for federal financial aid at any institution until the overpayment is resolved. The overpayment may be resolved by being paid in full to Missouri State University.