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IV Funds Refunds Policy

Liverpool Hope University will follow the requirements of the Federal Student Aid programme “Return of Title IV Funds” regulations. In some cases these requirements may differ from the University’s standard procedures. Therefore, policies stated below will apply to all US Federal Loan Aid recipients when the University is dealing with a student’s Federal Loan funds. Students may receive a copy of the University’s Title IV Refund Policy from the Finance Office. This policy statement should be read in conjunction with Liverpool Hope University's Federal Loan Programme “Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy,” which is also available from the Finance Office.

Requirements for Title IV programme funds when students withdraw are separate from any refund policy that the University has – details of which can be found at;

http://www.hope.ac.uk/gateway/students/studentfinance/2013financeinformation/policies/

The student may therefore still owe funds to the University to cover unpaid institutional charges. Liverpool Hope University may also collect from the student any Title IV programme funds owed to the University that it was required to return to the funding source.

In calculating Return of Title IV funds the Finance Office will use worksheets and software provided by the US Department of Education. All such funds must be returned to the lender within 45 days of the date when the University determined that a student withdrew from studies or Interrupted studies. Students who have questions about their Title IV funds can phone the Federal Student Aid Information Centre at 1-800-4-FEDAID (1-800-433-3243). Information is also available on Student Aid

Title IV funds will be returned in the following order:

  1. Unsubsidized Federal loans
  2. Subsidized Federal loans
  3. PLUS Loan funds

Official Withdrawal from Studies

A student wishing to withdraw from the University should normally complete a Liverpool Hope University “Withdrawal from Studies Form” (undergraduate or postgraduate, as appropriate). It should be submitted to the Student Administration office either via the Help Desk in the foyer of the Gateway Building or posted to: Student Administration, Liverpool Hope University, Liverpool L16 9JD. Under exceptional circumstances a student may inform the Registrar in writing, including the date of intended withdrawal. In either case you are strongly advised to keep a photocopy of your method of notification.

If possible the Liverpool Hope University “Withdrawal from Studies Form” should also be completed, even if written notification has been given. Should the student fail to file the Withdrawal Form or there is a lag between the written notification and the filing of the form, the earlier date of withdrawal stated will be used to calculate the Return of Title IV funds.

If a student does not indicate a clear date of withdrawal, and this cannot be determined from their attendance record, the University will assume a 50% attendance and use that date as the last date for attendance.

The amount of assistance earned (i.e. the amount owed to the University) is determined on a pro rata basis, with the following exceptions:

  1. The £3000 Non-refundable Deposit to secure an International Student’s place at Liverpool Hope University, except when a student’s visa is denied before arrival.
  2. No Refunds are given for Withdrawal from University Halls of Residence except at the discretion of the Dean of Students. Refunds will only be considered under the exceptional circumstances of serious student illness or family bereavement.
  3. Meal Plan Refunds are discretionary and decided on an individual student basis, again granted only for non-academic reasons of serious student ill health or family bereavement.

The payment period is the semester period for which the loan was certified. For example, if the student completes 30% of the payment period or period of enrolment, the student has earned 30% of the assistance they were originally scheduled to receive. Once the student has completed more that 60% of the payment period or period of enrolment, all the assistance that the student was scheduled to receive for the period is considered to have been earned (i.e. owed to the University).

If the student did not receive all the funds that were earned, he or she may be due a post-withdrawal disbursement. The University may automatically use all or a portion of the post-withdrawal disbursement (if the student accepts it) for tuition, fees, and room and board charges, as contracted by the student with the University. The student may choose to decline the loan funds so that additional Federal loan debt is not incurred. However, it may be in the student’s best interest to accept the disbursement and allow the University to keep the funds owed in order to reduce their indebtedness to Liverpool Hope University. If the student received more assistance that was earned, the excess funds must be returned by the school and/or the student.

First-time, first-year undergraduates who do not complete the first 30 days of their programme before withdrawal will not earn any loan funds that he or she would have received had the student remained enrolled past the 30th day. If the student receives (or the university receives on behalf of the student) excess Title IV programme funds that must be returned, the university must return a portion of the excess equal to the lesser of:

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

 

Interruption of Studies: (Leave of Absence)

Students are allowed to interrupt their studies only after receiving formal approval from the University. Interruption of Study will normally only be granted for medical reasons, family bereavement or other serious non-academic circumstances outside the student’s control. Any student wishing to interrupt their studies should make an appointment with a Senior Academic Advisor in their Deanery (Academic Division) and complete an “Interruption of Study Form”. (See Liverpool Hope University’s “Satisfactory Academic Progress” policy for completion time-frames.)

An Interrupting student will be charged for all Liverpool Hope University fees owed up to the approval date on the Liverpool Hope University “Interruption of Study Form”. Otherwise, the same Refund Rules apply as for Office Withdrawal From Studies (see above p. 2). Students receiving US Federal Loan aid may be liable for the return of a portion of those funds, depending on the effective date of the Interruption. Any student considering Interruption of Study is strongly advised to seek advice from the Liverpool Hope University Finance Office before making their decision. Otherwise, during an approved Interruption of Study period the student continues in their LHU registered student status. For US Federal Loan recipients this means “in-school” status For repayment purposes you will not have to begin repayment of loan funds. However, if you do not return to study at the approved date, the Last Day of Attendance for start of repayment calculation will be the date the Interruption of Study was effective (i.e. the date it began), and you may have already used up your allowed grace period.

A student granted an official Interruption of Study that meets the criteria stated above is not considered to have withdrawn and no Return calculation is required. Upon the student’s return, he or she continues to earn the Federal Student Aid previously awarded for the period.

If a student fails to return to their studies at the approved date, they will be deemed to have Withdrawn from Studies and the University must report their change of status to the loan holder. In this situation Title IV regulations stipulate that the student’s withdrawal date is the date the student began the Interruption of Study, not their stated return date.
 

Unofficial Interruption of Study

Any student who interrupts their studies without University approval by completing the Liverpool Hope University “Interruption of Study Form” will remain registered on all their modules and will be liable for all Liverpool Hope University fees. No Refunds to the student are allowed. For Title IV purposes an unofficial Interruption of Study will be treated as a Withdrawal from Studies. The University must report the student’s status to the loan holder as soon as the University recognises that the student is no longer attending their classes.