Financial Aid Award Guide 2014-2015

Financial Aid and Your Statement of Account

Financial Aid Disbursement Procedures

Financial aid funds must be used first to pay university tuition and fees and then to pay health insurance, university housing, and other institutional educational expenses. Before the start of each term, your university Statement of Account will be available on your Student Center, accessible via Buckeye Link. Your online statement will show instructional and general fees, health insurance, room and board, and other appropriate charges. Any aid for which you are eligible will not initially appear on the Statement of Account, but will be reflected under "Pending Financial Aid." Beginning ten days prior to the first day of each term, your financial aid will be reflected as credits on your Statement of Account. All fees, including penalties, must be paid according to the deadline indicated on your Statement of Account.

Athletes: Due to NCAA regulations, there are additional procedures for disbursement of certain types of aid and the release of credit balances. Please contact the Office of Athletic Aid for more information.

Eligibility Checks:

Please be aware that you must fulfill certain criteria of enrollment status and eligibility to receive your financial aid funds. Your eligibility is monitored on an ongoing basis throughout the term. Aid which was initially credited to your Statement of Account for which you cease to be eligible will be withdrawn. Eligibility checks include incomplete verification (see Verification), hours of enrollment, Suspension Status (see SAP), and being in default or owing a refund to a financial aid program (see Eligibility Criteria).

If you are ineligible for any of the aid originally credited to your account, you will be responsible to pay those charges which were covered by that aid on your original Statement of Account.

Financial Aid Payment Process:

If your financial aid award appears on your Statement of Account and all else remains the same, it will credit toward your charges. Any overage, a credit balance, will be directed to you for other educational expenses including off-campus housing (see Credit Balances below). Federal regulations state that Title IV federal financial aid funds cannot be disbursed to you until ten days prior to the start of classes each term. The Office of the Bursar sends credit balances via direct deposit or check only after the tenth day prior to the first day of the term; therefore, you may not receive those funds until five to seven days prior to the start of the term.

Credit Balances:

Credit balances (credits which exceed the charges on your account) can be made available to you in the following ways:

  1. direct deposit to your personal checking or savings account. To set up direct deposit, access your Student Center via Buckeye Link. Under the Finances section, click on the "Account Refund" hyperlink. You will be directed to the appropriate website, where you can enter your deposit information. Please contact the Student Service Center for more details or with questions about the direct deposit of your credit balance.
  2. paper check. Unless you request direct deposit, your credit balance will be mailed to you in the form of a check. Refund checks will no longer be mailed to regional campuses for pick-up. Refunds that are not direct-deposited will be mailed to you at the address listed for you as your local address regardless of your campus of attendance. To update your local address information, go to Buckeye Link and click on Change Address.

Reductions in Disbursed Aid:

If SFA determines that you are no longer eligible to receive aid that has already been disbursed to you, you may be asked to repay it. This is a result of the continuous, ongoing eligibility and reconciliation checks that SFA performs for all aid programs to ensure that funds are going only to students eligible to receive them. If necessary, a recovery of disbursed funds from you will take one of the following forms:

  1. SFA may reduce future disbursements of aid to make your award consistent with your eligibility status. This reduction might result in an increase of your personal financial obligation for university charges for those terms.
  2. SFA may reduce your aid for the current term to make your award consistent with your eligibility status. This reduction would take the form of a reduced credit placed on your account that may increase your personal financial obligation for university charges. (In rare circumstances, a recovery of prior term aid is necessary. In this case the reduction would take the form of a charge placed on your current term account that may increase your personal financial obligation for university charges.)
  3. SFA may reduce prior term aid which would result in an additional charge on your account. This will increase the amount you owe for university charges (or reduce your credit balance) and could result in a balance due.

Please periodically check your statement of account to ensure any balance that may be created due to an enrollment change or loss of eligibility does not remain unpaid. If you have questions regarding your eligibility for financial aid, please contact the Student Service Center.

Summer Aid Disbursement:

If you attend Summer Semester First Session only or Summer Semester Second Session only, your session only includes seven weeks. Since living expenses, based on standard allowances determined by the SFA, can only be included for your period of attendance attendance, your financial aid may be adjusted accordingly.

If You Co-op

There are a number of co-op courses at Ohio State for which you can pay a nominal fee to be considered enrolled and at a fee-paid status with zero hours of enrollment. This arrangement allows Ohio State to report you as "enrolled" to the loan servicer so that you do not enter the grace period for your loans. It also allows you to remain eligible for coverage under health insurance programs.

You are not eligible for financial aid for the terms in which you co-op. Any financial aid which has been awarded to you for a co-op term will not apply to your university account, and you will not be able to receive any credit balance from your account. The SFA will recalculate your financial aid eligibility, if necessary, based on your reduced number of terms of enrollment. If you receive departmental funds, contact your college or department to see if re-distribution of the award is allowed.

Co-op terms during which you are not enrolled for additional hours for credit will not affect your standing under the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy.