Below you will find a number of resources available to Graduate and Professional students. Many of these items are important to understand as they potentially impact a student's aid eligibility.
Loan forgiveness and cancellation programs are intended to encourage individuals to enter and continue in the teaching profession and the Public Service sector. It is important to be aware of the options available to you, as well as the requirements of each so that you can better plan for the financing of your graduate program:
Federal Student Loan Forgiveness Program for Teachers:
A loan forgiveness program offered by the federal government and administered by the Department of Education.
Loan Forgiveness for Public Service Employees :
A loan forgiveness program offered by the federal government and administered by the Department of Education.
LMU Financial Aid is required by federal regulations to calculate a Return to Title IV Funds for all students who withdraw, are dismissed, take a leave of absence, or stop attending before completing the semester. The policy applies to all students who discontinue enrollment in all classes, on or after the first day of the semester.
Title IV financial aid funds are awarded under the assumption that a student will attend the institution for the entire period in which federal assistance is awarded. When a student withdraws from all courses for any reason, including medical withdrawals, the student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of Title IV funds they were awarded. The return of funds is based upon the premise that students earn their financial aid in proportion to the amount of time in which they are enrolled. A pro-rated schedule is used to determine the amount of federal aid a student will have earned at the time of the withdrawal. Thus, a student who withdraws in the second week of classes has earned less of their financial aid than a student who withdraws in the seventh week. Students who complete more than 60 percent of the semester are considered to have earned 100 percent of their financial aid.
Based on these federal guidelines, any student who receives federal financial aid and does not complete at least 60% of the semester could be responsible for repaying a portion of the aid they received. Students who do not begin attendance must repay all financial aid disbursed for the term. Academic policies on withdrawing from the Law School are available in the policy and procedure section of our website.
The Return of Title IV Funds policy is separate from the university’s refund policy. A student who withdraws from the university may be required to return unearned federal aid and still owe LMU for tuition and fees. For more information on Loyola Marymount University’s withdrawal policy, please contact the Office of Student Financial Services or visit their website.
The withdrawal date established by the Office of the Registrar is the date used by the Financial Aid Office to determine the percentage of Title IV aid earned by the student. Students are responsible for notifying the Office of the Registrar of their intent to take a Leave of Absence (LOA) or Withdraw (W) from courses. Please visit the Office of the for more information on how to officially withdraw or take a leave of absence.
When the student withdraws, whether it is an official withdrawal or unofficial, the amount of aid earned by the student must be determined. If the amount disbursed to the student is greater than the amount earned, unearned funds must be returned. Students who fail to earn a passing grade in at least one class will be evaluated to determine if they withdrew unofficially (stopped attending classes) or they must prove they participated in an academically related activity past the 60% point of the payment period. In most cases, if a student cannot prove they were in attendance past the 60% point of the payment period, the institution can use the midpoint of the payment period (semester) as the last date of attendance for calculation purposes.
Examples of academically related activities are exams, quizzes, tutorials, computer-based instruction, academic advising or counseling, academic conferences, completing an academic assignment, paper or project, and attending a school-assigned study group.
Repayment of Unearned Aid
Once LMU has determined that a student has completely withdrawn, a Return of Title IV Funds calculation will be performed within 30 days. LMU will notify the student in writing of their revised eligibility after the Return of Title IV Funds calculation is completed. If the student owes unpaid tuition and fees, the student will receive an updated invoice from the university.
The responsibility to repay unearned aid is shared by the institution and the student. Students might be required to return additional funds directly to the Department of Education. If this occurs, you will be notified in the written letter that is sent to you by the Financial Aid Office.
How is earned aid determined
The earned portion of federal aid is calculated on a daily basis using calendar days from the first day of instruction. Based on the date of withdrawal, drop or leave of absence, the Financial Aid Office will determine the amount, if any, of "unearned" federal financial aid received by the student. The calculation to determine the percentage of the enrollment period completed by the student is as follows:
Enrolled days ÷ total number of days in the semester = % of Aid Earned
The result will equal the percentage of the enrollment period completed. The amount of federal financial aid that was paid or could have been paid to the student will be based on this percentage. Any aid received in excess of the earned amount is considered unearned. If a student receives more financial aid than the amount earned, the unearned portion will be returned to the Department of Education and the student will be billed for the overpayment.
In some cases, a student may be eligible to receive a “post-withdrawal” disbursement after the student completely withdraws from the university when the amount of aid earned is less than the amount of aid disbursed. In such cases, the Financial Aid Office will notify the student of the “post-withdrawal” disbursement by sending an award letter to the student via US postal service. The award letter must be returned to the Financial Aid Office within fourteen (14) days or the “post-withdrawal” disbursement will be canceled.
There are some Title IV funds that a student may have been scheduled to receive that cannot be disbursed to a student once they have completely withdrawn because of other eligibility requirements. For example, if a student is a first-time, first-year, undergraduate student and has not completed the first 30 days of their program before they withdraw, they will not receive any Federal Direct Loan funds that they would have received if they had remained enrolled past the 30th day.
Return of Title IV Funds
Federal Title IV financial aid is returned in the order mandated by the U.S. Department of Education. No program can receive a refund if the student did not receive aid from that program. Funds must be returned within 45 days of the established withdrawal date. Federal guidelines mandate that we return federal funds in the following order:
- Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans
- Federal Perkins Loan
- Federal Direct Plus loans
The Return of Title IV Fund Policy does not apply to state grants such as the Cal Grant, institutional loans, or university grants or scholarships. These types of aid are returned based on the LMU Refund percentage calendar. The percentage calendar below provides the ‘earned’ percentages by dates. Please contact the Financial Aid Office for more information on the consequences of dropping classes if you receive these types of financial aid.
LMU Refund Percentage Calendar
The Return of Title IV Funds policy is separate from the university’s refund policy. The university refund policy is based on the calendars below by term. For more information on the university’s refund/cancellation policy, please review the Tuition Liability/Refund Policy on our website.
Please Note: The procedures and policies listed above are subject to change without notice based on changes to federal laws and regulations. For further guidance on Title IV Refund‘s (R2T4) policies and procedures, please see the reference material found in Volume 5 of the Federal Student Aid Handbook under Withdrawals.
Creating a budget may sound complicated, but all you need to do to get started is set aside some time and get organized—the benefits will make the effort worthwhile. The following steps will help you set up your budget and manage your finances by helping you track your income and expenses.
If you are denied a graduate PLUS loan you can attempt to secure funding through one of the options detailed below, even though you have received a PLUS denial.
Step one: Seek a Credit Appeal
The Department of Education allows borrowers whose credit was denied the opportunity to document either of the following situations.
- Information showing that credit reporting used in the credit denial is incorrect and/or has been corrected.
- Extenuating circumstances exist relating to the adverse credit history of the primary PLUS borrower.
Borrowers make a credit appeal through one of these means.
- Log in to studentaid.gov and select "Document Extenuating Circumstances" on the left navigation bar. Follow the directions and a representative from the Department of Education’s Applicant Services will contact the borrower with further instructions.
- Contact Applicant Services at 1-800-557-7394 between 8a to 8p, Monday through Friday.
Step two: Utilize an Endorser
An endorser is someone who will pass the credit check and who agrees, similar to a co-signer, to repay the PLUS Loan if the student borrower is unable to do so. Almost anyone can serve as an endorser.
If you choose to obtain an endorser, the endorser should complete the endorser addendum at studentaid.gov The endorser will need the PLUS Endorser Code (if a Direct PLUS Loan Request was completed) or Loan Identification Number to connect the endorsement to the denied Grad PLUS Loan. Completing the endorsement online also requires a Federal Student Aid ID (FSA ID) that utilizes a username and password.
- If the borrower completed the Direct PLUS Loan Request at studentaid.gov the PLUS Endorser Code is found in the confirmation email received in the denial notice or by logging into studentaid.gov and selecting "Direct PLUS Loan Requests."
- More often, the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan was initiated by accepting the loan as part of a financial aid offer. In this case, the Loan/Award Identification Number will be needed and can be obtained by contacting the LMU Financial Aid office.
- If the endorser does not already have an FSA ID, they may create one at fsaid.ed.gov.