Financial Aid Appeals – 508.2

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University of Arkansas at Little Rock
Policy Name: Financial Aid Appeals
Policy Number: 508.2
Effective Date: August 4, 2014

Policy:

The UALR Office of Admissions and Financial Aid follows federal, state and institutional regulations in administering financial aid.

If a student has unusual or extenuating circumstances that they feel are not addressed by the policies of this office, a written request for review may be submitted. All supporting documentation should be submitted with the appeal. For further information, see http://ualr.edu/financialaid/policies-procedures/appeals/.

All information will become a part of the student’s financial aid record. Items cannot be returned. Students will receive a written response within four weeks unless submitted during high volume periods such as the beginning of each semester.

Students who file an appeal or reconsideration are responsible for payment of tuition and fees and other charges that are incurred while the appeal or reconsideration is being considered. Failure to make the appropriate payment arrangements by the published confirmation and/or payment deadlines may result in:

  1. Cancellation of registration.
  2. Assessment of late fees.
  3. Referral of an unpaid account to a collection agency.
Types of Financial Aid Appeals

Academic Appeal

Students who fail to meet UALR Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards and have extenuating circumstances may file an appeal with the UALR Financial Aid Appeals Committee.

The following documentation is required to file an appeal:

  1. A typed and signed statement from the student which explains both the extenuating circumstances that caused the failure to make satisfactory academic progress and the change in circumstances that will allow the student to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress standards at the next evaluation.
  2. Supporting documentation that verifies the circumstances referenced in the appeal statement.
  3. A current copy of the student’s degree plan which is signed by the student’s academic advisor.

Scholarship Appeals

Academic scholarship students who fail to meet the Academic Scholarship renewal requirements and have extenuating circumstances may file an appeal with the UALR Financial Aid Appeals Committee.

The following documentation is required to file an appeal:

  1. Typed and signed statement from the student which explains the extenuating circumstances that caused the failure to meet the scholarship renewal requirements.
  2. Supporting documentation that verifies the circumstances referenced in the appeal statement.
  3. Current copy of the student’s degree plan.

Private Scholarships

Students who fail to meet renewal requirements for a private scholarship and have extenuating circumstances may file an appeal with the Office of Development.

The following documentation is required to file an appeal:

  1. Typed and signed letter of appeal from the student which explains the extenuating circumstances that caused the failure to meet the scholarship renewal requirements.
  2. Supporting documentation that verifies the circumstances referenced in the appeal statement.
Other Requests for an Exception to Financial Aid Policies

Request for Financial Reconsideration

The federal needs analysis formulas use the most recent federal income tax information to calculate financial need. For example, financial need for the 2012-2013 academic year is based on income reported on the 2011 federal tax return. If the student’s and/or family’s financial situation(s) have changed since the reported tax year due to unusual or extenuating circumstances, a request for financial reconsideration may be submitted.

The following documentation is required to request financial reconsideration:

  1. Typed and signed explanation of the change in financial circumstances.
  2. Documentation of the reason for the reduction in income (termination letter, verification of layoff or job termination, documentation of required job transfers, etc.).
  3. Statement from previous employer confirming last date of employment.
  4. Documentation of year-to-date earnings for all wage earners in household: student (and spouse, if married) and, if student is a dependent, parent and parent’s spouse.
  5. Documentation of year-to-date unemployment benefits.
  6. Documentation of any other expected income, including job severance pay.
  7. Verification of FAFSA income (if not previously provided):
    1. Verification worksheet
    2. Copy of student’s (and parent’s, if dependent) most recent federal tax transcript.

Request for a Change in Dependency Status

Students who do not meet the criteria for independent status are considered to be dependent students. Dependent students are required to provide parent information and parent signature on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The parent data is taken into account when determining financial aid eligibility for a dependent student. Students who have extenuating circumstances may file an appeal to be considered exempt from the requirement to provide parent information on the FAFSA.

The following conditions do not support a dependency status change:

  1. Parents refusal to contribute to the student’s education.
  2. Parents are unwilling to provide information on the FAFSA or for verification.
  3. Parents do not claim the student as a dependent for income tax purposes.
  4. Student demonstrates total self-sufficiency.

The following documentation is required to request a dependency status change:

  1. A typed and signed statement explaining the extenuating circumstances that prevent the student from providing parent information and a parent signature.
  2. Supporting letter(s) from a professional, such as a high school counselor, member of the clergy, attorney, caseworker, counselor, or therapist. The individual writing the letter of support cannot be a family member and the letter must confirm the circumstances listed in your statement.
  3. A copy of the student’s most recent federal tax return.
Other Types of Appeals

Residency Appeals

Information regarding residency appeals is located at http://ualr.edu/admissions/residency-appeals/.

Request for Refund of Tuition and Fee Charges

Questions concerning tuition and fee payment and/or refunds should be directed to the Student Accounts Office in the Student Services Center, first floor, room 120, 501.569.3450, or at studentaccounts@ualr.edu.


Source: Existing Policy
Revised: April 1, 2010 (reviewed)
Approved By: Dean R. Kahler
Custodian: Office of Financial Aid