Withdrawals & Return of Funds
Although we hope it’s never the case, we understand that life happens and that you may need to withdraw early. These are some of the things that will happen if you’ve received financial aid and then withdraw early.
Return of Title IV Funds ("R2T4")
Financial aid is awarded under the assumption that you will attend college for the entire time that the financial assistance is awarded. The federal government mandates that students who withdraw or fail to complete all classes (unofficial withdrawal) within a term may only keep the financial aid they have “earned” up to the time of withdrawal. Any unearned aid must be returned regardless if it has already been disbursed.
This situation is called Return of Title IV Funds or “R2T4.” It can result in owing aid funds to the university, government or both. Title IV funds include federal programs such as the Pell Grant; the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG); the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant (TEACH); Federal Perkins Loan; Federal Direct Stafford Loans (both Subsidized and Unsubsidized loans); the Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS); and the Graduate PLUS Loan.
The higher the number of class days completed, the lower the amount of financial aid that must be returned. Once you’ve completed more than 60% of the semester, you’re allowed to keep 100% of aid even if a withdrawal occurs after that point. If you are considering withdrawing, please speak with our office so we can best advise you for financial aid repercussions.
What is a withdrawal versus a drop?
Drop: Refers to removing one or more individual courses from your schedule but remaining enrolled in other courses for the same term.
Withdraw: Refers to removing all courses from your schedule and no longer attending the university for a specific term.
What is an unofficial withdrawal?
An unofficial withdrawal occurs when you’ve enrolled for a semester but then stop attending all of your courses. UTSA reviews students at the end of the term to determine if they unofficially withdrew from the university. Students who receive all grades of “F, NC, W or NR” in any combination are subject to the R2T4 calculation and reviewed at the end of the term.
Financial Aid and Scholarships contacts professors to provide proof of when the student ceased attendance through graded class assignments, documented group project work, or other documentation from the professor. If professors provide documentation showing the last date of attendance or coursework completed, that date will be used to calculate the R2T4 and federal funds to return. If proof is not provided, 100% of federal funds will be returned. If the professor indicates that the student stopped attending but we cannot determine if it occurred prior to the 60% point of the semester, then we will use the midpoint of the semester and calculate the R2T4 based on 50%.
Will I owe a balance if I withdraw?
There are many variables in determining if a balance will be owed if you withdraw: the number of funds received, the date of the withdrawal (or your last date of attendance), and if you will be entitled to any refund of tuition and fees as designated in the Academic Calendar for the semester you are withdrawing.
If you are receiving financial aid and withdraw from all your courses at UTSA or fail to attend all courses, then you and/or UTSA may be required to return some of the federal, state and/or institutional funds awarded. One Stop must calculate your unearned percentage owed and return the amount of your unearned aid within 45 days of your withdrawal. Even if you receive a refund of tuition and fees, you may still owe UTSA money after we calculate the amounts that must be returned. Refunds of tuition and fees, if applicable, are processed much sooner than the return of federal, state or institutional financial aid funds and will sometimes result in you first receiving a refund of their tuition and fees and then owing a balance after aid is returned. You should not cash your refund until you know what your final balance will be. A complete listing of the tuition and fees refund schedule is available by semester in the Schedule of Classes under the Academic Calendar for that semester.
If you’re enrolled in courses during the semester, but stop attending all courses (unofficial withdrawal), then you will not have your Return of Title IV processed until after the semester ends and grades have been posted. One Stop will then calculate your unearned percentage owed and return the amount of your unearned aid.
Any resulting balance remaining must be paid to UTSA. You may pay your balance by cash, check or money order at Fiscal Services, or online through the ASAP system with a credit card (Mastercard, Discover or American Express) or e-check.
Return of Title IV (R2T4) for Federal Funds
UTSA is required to return a portion of federal aid if a student withdraws on or before completing 60% of the semester. Federal financial aid includes the Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG), the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant (TEACH), Federal Perkins Loan, Federal Direct Loans (subsidized and unsubsidized), the Federal Direct Parent Loan (PLUS) for undergraduate students and the Federal PLUS Loan for graduate students. UTSA will return funds on behalf of the students to the appropriate federal aid program, which may cause the student to incur a balance. You are required to repay any balance owed to UTSA before transcripts or diplomas will be released or you can register for an upcoming semester. Any federal loan amount owed by the student is to be repaid under the terms of their promissory note.
If the amount disbursed to you was less than the amount you earned, you may be eligible to receive a post-withdrawal disbursement of the earned aid that was not received. Financial Aid and Scholarships will notify you if you are eligible for a post-withdrawal disbursement.
Funds will be returned in the following order per federal regulations:
- Unsubsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loans
- Subsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loans
- Federal Perkins Loan
- Grad PLUS Loans
- Federal PLUS Loans
- Federal PELL Grant
- Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants
- TEACH Grants
Example of Federal R2T4 Calculation
If you withdraw on the 30th day of class of a 114 day semester, then the total institutional charges (tuition, fees, housing, meals, etc.) equals $3,750. If you were awarded and received the following federal financial aid: $2,155 PELL Grant, $675 FSEOG Grant, $2,500 Unsubsidized Direct Loan, $2,750 Subsidized Direct Loan and $1,200 Perkins Loan, per the R2T4 policy, you will have “earned” 30/114 or 26.3% (30 days completed ÷ 114 days of the semester) of the federal financial aid requiring the remainder of unearned aid to be returned to the federal aid programs. Under the policy, $2,440.60 would be returned to the Unsubsidized Direct Stafford Loan.
State and Institutional Funds
If you receive state or institutional grant funds (Texas Public Education Grant (TPEG), TEXAS Grant, UTSA Grant, etc.) and withdraw during the tuition and fee refund period, then you will have funds returned based on the tuition and fee refund schedule.
Example of State Refund Calculation: You withdraw on the 18th day of class of a 114 day semester and then are awarded a UTSA Grant for $2,500. One Stop will return 25% of the UTSA Grant or $625.
How am I notified if I owe a balance due to R2T4?
Student Financial Aid & Enrollment Services will notify you if you owe a balance due to R2T4 by sending you a letter to your mailing address that you have indicated on ASAP. Any account balance will appear on ASAP as well. You are responsible for maintaining an updated mailing address, phone number and email address in ASAP.
Does withdrawing affect Satisfactory Academic Progress?
Yes, withdrawing may have an effect on your Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). Please view our requirements for maintaining Satisfactory Academic Progress to remain eligible for subsequent semesters of financial aid.
If I withdraw, what happens during future semesters of aid?
If you withdraw or stop attending in the fall term, we will cancel the spring disbursements of your loans and any grants you were receiving. If you plan to return in the spring you will need to submit a Spring Enrollment Change Form requesting to reinstate your spring aid. If your grants were canceled, you are not guaranteed the funding in the spring with the exception of the Federal Pell Grant. If you withdraw in the spring semester, you will need to submit a Summer Application to be awarded summer aid. Return of Title IV for the summer sessions differs than in the fall and spring. Please review information regarding Summer R2T4.
If you have had federal loans as part of your financial aid, either this year or in previous years, you are required to complete Loan Exit Counseling any time you fall below half-time enrollment. Please complete Online Exit Counseling to clear your Exit Counseling Requirement. If you have taken out loans for the semester in which you withdrew, then these loans will still count toward the total amount of loans you are allowed to borrow as a student. Whenever possible, you should bring back any refund you have received and request that portion of your loans be canceled and sent back to the lender.