If a student intends to withdraw, or does withdraw, from all courses at the University of St. Thomas School of Law before the completion of an academic term they need to be aware of the financial aid consequences. Different policies exist depending on the type of aid (federal, state or institutional) received. The following information will help the student understand the different policies in effect.
A. Return of Title IV (Federal) Aid
Withdrawal from all courses at St. Thomas during any given term results in a calculation of “earned” versus “unearned” federal financial aid. This policy assumes aid is earned based on the number of days enrolled in a particular term. The date of withdrawal, not institutional costs, will determine how much aid must be returned to the federal programs.
B. Withdrawal Procedure
The student must withdraw officially in one of three ways: through MURPHY telephone registration, MURPHY On-line (at https://banner.stthomas.edu/) or by permission of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. The withdrawal date is the date the withdrawal process is begun. If the student fails to withdraw officially, the withdrawal date will become the midpoint of the term, unless the university can document a later date. In certain circumstances if an earlier date of last academic activity is determined, this date may be used in the calculation of “earned” federal aid.
C. Calculation of “Earned” Federal Aid
Once the withdrawal date is known, the university divides the total number of calendar days in the term for which the student was enrolled, including weekends and excluding breaks that are 5 days or longer, by the total number of calendar days in the term. This figure is the percentage of federal aid that has been “earned” and the student is allowed to keep. If the student withdraws after completing 60% of the term, they have earned all of the federal financial aid for that period.
St. Thomas and the student share the responsibility of repaying unearned federal aid. Before a student’s portion is determined,St. Thomas’ share is calculated. Federal funds will be returned to the programs in the following order:
St. Thomas’ share may be enough to cover all unearned aid that must be returned to the federal programs. If this is the case, no further payment is required from the student. However, should the student be required to repay a portion of their loan through the student’s share calculation, they will NOT be expected to return the loan funds immediately, but rather when repayment begins according to the terms and conditions of the promissory note.
D. Institutional and State Refund Policy
The return of Title IV Aid calculation, as cited above, only takes into consideration federal funds. It does not include institutional, state or outside funding sources that may be included in a student’s financial aid package. This section explains the institutional refund policy and how these other sources of aid may be affected by a withdrawal from St. Thomas.
The St. Thomas offers tuition refunds if a student withdraws from the university, or drops an individual course, according to the following schedule for fall and spring semesters:
Through the first 14 calendar days of the semester 100%
From the 15th through 21st calendar days 80%
From the 22nd through 28th calendar days 60%
From the 29th through 35th calendar days 40%
From the 36th through 42nd calendar days 20%
After the 42nd calendar day 0%
If a student withdraws during a period of time that allows for a tuition refund, a portion or all, of the institutional, state, and/or outside funding may be reduced or cancelled. If the student received a 100% tuition refund on all courses for a particular term, all institutional, state and outside funding must be returned to the appropriate aid program(s). If the tuition refund was not used to fully repay the Return of Title IV Aid, then a proportional share of the remaining tuition refund must be returned to the appropriate aid program(s).
It is very likely that St. Thomas would be required to return more federal money to the various programs than the student received in institutional refund. If this happens, the student will be responsible for paying the balance. However, if this causes undue hardship, a satisfactory payment arrangement can be made with the St. Thomas Student Accounts Office. The office can be reached at 651-962-6609.