Federal Title IV and State of MN Funds Refund Policies

Federal Return of Title IV Funds

The Return of Title IV Funds Policy applies to all students who have or could have been, disbursed federal student aid funds. In accordance with federal regulations, the University and the student are required to return unearned portions of Title IV assistance (federal grants and/or federal student loans). This return of unearned funds only applies to students who have completely withdrawn from courses.

If you withdraw during the trimester, a calculation of “earned” versus “unearned” federal student aid must be determined. This federal policy assumes you earn student aid based on how much time has elapsed in the trimester. If you receive federal student financial aid, that aid may be reduced as a result of your withdrawal.

Return of Title IV funds calculations will be completed prior to application of Northwestern’s Tuition Refund Policy.

Steps for the return of Title IV funds

There are four steps that the University must complete to comply with the federal policy:

Step 1. Determine the official or unofficial withdrawal date

The withdrawal date is the date you begin the official withdrawal process. To officially withdraw, contact the Registrar’s office (registrar1@nwhealth.edu) to request an official withdrawal form.

If you fail to officially withdraw, 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.

Step 2. Determine the amount of earned federal aid

The percentage of earned aid is determined by dividing the total number of calendar days enrolled by the total number of calendar days in the term. If you complete 60 percent of the term, you earn all federal financial aid for the term. If you withdraw before completing 60 percent of the term, you “earn” federal funds in direct proportion to the length of time you were enrolled.

Unless a student subject to verification has provided all required verification documents in time for Northwestern Health Sciences University to meet the return deadlines, the University will include as Aid Disbursed or Aid That Could Have Been Disbursed in the Return calculation only those Title IV funds not subject to verification. If a student who failed to provide all required verification documents in time for the University to meet the Return deadline later provides those documents prior to the applicable verification deadline, the University will perform a new Return calculation on all aid the student qualified for based on the completed verification documents and make the appropriate adjustments.

Step 3. Return unearned federal funds to the appropriate program(s)

The responsibility to repay unearned aid is shared by the University and the student. The University’s share is the lesser of unearned aid or unearned institutional charges. The University’s share must be repaid to the federal aid programs in the following order, before the student’s share is considered: Unsubsidized Direct Loan, Subsidized Direct Loan, Direct PLUS Loan, Federal Pell Grant, Federal SEOG. The University will always return any unearned Title IV funds it is responsible for returning within 45 days of the date the University determines the student withdrew and offer any post-withdrawal disbursement of loan funds within 30 days of that date.

If you are required to repay a portion of your loan through the student’s share calculation, you will not be expected to return those funds immediately, but rather when repayment begins according to the terms and conditions of the promissory note. If your share includes grant funds, federal rules allow the grant to be reduced by 50 percent, and you will be responsible for repaying this money to the Department of Education. If this causes undue hardship, a satisfactory payment arrangement can be made with the University.

Step 4.  Post-withdrawal Disbursement

Northwestern will disburse any Title IV grant funds a student is due as part of a post-withdrawal disbursement within 45 days of the date that the University determines the student withdrew and disburse any loan funds a student accepts within 180 days of that date.

Failure to repay

Failure of the student to repay the Federal Government could jeopardize the student’s eligibility for future federal financial assistance. Failure to pay Northwestern Health Sciences University could jeopardize the student’s eligibility to return to the school and/or receive official academic transcripts.


If you have questions, contact the Financial Aid Office.


State of Minnesota Funds Refund Policy

If you cancel a portion of your enrollment or completely withdraw from classes during the trimester, you may be required to return all or a portion of the state of Minnesota financial aid to the state financial aid program from which the aid was received. This may include:

  • Minnesota State Grant
  • Student Educational Loan Fund

If you withdraw from all courses, state funds are subject to a worksheet calculation based on the federal Return of Title IV Funds formula, in addition to other contingencies. If you drop credits, but still maintain some enrollment, state financial aid funds may be reduced by the amount of any tuition and fee refund received by you. A notification letter will be sent to you if your financial aid is reduced, and a return is required.