Refunds / Disbursements / Tax Credits

Refunds / Disbursements / Tax Credits

Financial Aid Disbursement Process and Requests for Excess Funds

Most financial aid is disbursed in equal payments for each semester of the award period. Students in good standing may have any excess balance in their account returned to them to pay for indirect education expenses. Any time financial aid proceeds credited to a student’s account exceed direct charges, the bursar’s office will automatically forward the credit balance directly to the student, no later than 14 calendar days after the credit balance occurs or the start of the term - whichever is later.

Students are responsible for payment of tuition and fees incurred after a full credit balance refund has been released (e.g., added courses). Credit balance refund distributions are made in accordance with applicable federal guidelines. Any outstanding debt to the University as a result of a required credit balance refund is the responsibility of the student.

Generally financial aid begins disbursing 10 days prior to the start of the term and refunds are released to eligible students by day 14 of the term (14 days after the term started). You must participate in your on-ground or online coursework to establish eligibility and remain eligible for federal aid. Failure to participate in academically related activity will result in loss of eligibility for all or part of the term. If two sequential courses make up your semester and you do not register for the first half of the semester, federal aid cannot disburse until you have established participation in the second half of the term. Disbursements may be delayed if you are subject to academic progress review for a prior term.

Federal Return of Title IV Funds

Federal regulations require the Office of Financial Aid to apply a formula established by the U.S. Department of Education, entitled “Return of Title IV Aid,” (R2T4) to determine the amount of federal financial aid a student has earned as of the student’s withdrawal date. The amount of the federal financial aid returned to federal aid programs is determined by the amount of time a student spends in academically related activity. After 60 percent of the term has passed, students have earned 100 percent of the federal financial aid disbursed to them.

Refund Policy for Withdrawals

The Federal Return of Title IV Funds policy deter­mines the amount of federal loan and grant (Title IV) aid a student may retain based on the amount of time the student spent in attendance at Santa Fe University of Art and Design during the semester a withdrawal occurs. Title IV funds include Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Oppor­tunity Grants (FSEOG), Federal Direct Loans, PLUS Loans, and Perkins Loans. The calculation of Title IV funds earned by the student has no rela­tionship to the student’s incurred institutional charges. For this calculation the withdrawal date is the date the student began the university’s official with­drawal process, the student’s last date of docu­mented participation in an academically related event at the university, or for unofficial withdrawals the midpoint of the se­mester.

Credit Balance

If a Title IV credit balance remains after calculation of the Santa Fe Univer­sity of Art and Design tuition refund, the appropri­ate recalculation of Santa Fe University of Art and Design institutional aid for the semester, and the Return of Title IV Funds policy, the balance will be paid to the student unless the student requests the additional credit be returned to her federal student loans. A non-Title IV credit will be treated in ac­cordance with any third-party requirements or re­turned to the student as appropriate.

Additional Funds

If a student earned more Title IV aid than was disbursed, the institution will credit earned grant funds to unpaid institu­tional charges and will disburse additional earned grant funds to the student. Any unpaid earned loan funds will be offered to the student to apply to unpaid institutional charges, and any additional amounts will be offered to the student to cover other incurred educational expenses. The student should accept these funds within 14 days of the date of the notification. Any post-withdrawal loan disbursement must be paid within 180 days of the student’s withdrawal.

Required Refunds

If federal funds disbursed were greater than considered “earned” after the Return of Title IV Funds calculation, refunds due from Santa Fe University of Art and Design will be made within 45 days of the student’s effective with­drawal date. If the student received credit balance refunds prior to completion of the withdrawal cal­culations, the student may be required to return an amount of those funds. A required Title IV refund may also result in a debit tuition account balance that the student must pay to the university.

Federal refunds are repaid in the following order:
Worksheets used to determine the amount of refund or Return of Title IV aid are available upon request.

  1. Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
  2. Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
  3. Federal Perkins Loan
  4. Federal Direct PLUS Loan
  5. Federal Pell Grant

The following example illustrates how the two policies would apply:

Refund Example

A student has a $10,000 tuition charge and withdrew on Friday of the fourth week of a 110-calendar day semester. The student withdrew on the 26th day of the semester.
The required federal Return of Title IV Funds calculation shows the student attended 26/110 or 23.6% of the semester.

Aid awarded and disbursed prior to withdrawal is as follows:
Total federal aid equals $4,000, and 23.6% or $944 was earned.

  • $2,000 Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
  • $2,000 Federal Pell Grant
  • $3,000 institutional funds (100% earned)
  • $3,000 paid in cash by the student

$4,000 in federal aid less the $944 earned amount results in $3,056 that must be returned to the federal programs as follows:
There is no tuition refund or reduction in charges at this point in the semester, so the $10,000 charge re­mains on the student’s account. Since there is no tuition refund, the full $3,000 institutional award will remain on the account. Thus, $10,000 less the $3,056 that Santa Fe Univer­sity of Art and Design has returned to the Federal Direct Loan and Pell Grant programs results in a cash balance due by the student to the university of $3,056.

  • $2,000 to Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
  • $1,056 to Federal Pell Grant

Any student registering thereafter will be responsible for his or her bill in full on the day of registration.

There are several ways to pay your tuition and fees:
Withdrawals and Refunds

  1. Pay in full by check. You can also pay by American Express, Discover, MasterCard, or Visa by calling 1-505-473-6411.
  2. Submit documentation for employer tuition reimbursement at the time of registration.
  3. Use the Santa Fe University of Art and Design Pay Portal to make convenient and secure online payments.

A student who withdraws from the university must complete a withdrawal form available at the Office of the Registrar. The date the form is submitted, with all required signatures, will be considered the official withdrawal date for all purposes except the Federal fund return calculations described in the Financial Aid section of the 2014-2015 Academic Catalog.

When it is necessary for a student to withdraw or reduce his/her course load, the following policy governing refund percentages will apply:

Traditional Program—16-Week Semesters

Traditional Program—8-Week Semesters

See the academic calendar for specific dates applicable to each semester or 8-week term.

Courses dropped by the end of week one 100%
Courses dropped by the end of week three 50%
Courses dropped after the end of week three 0%
Course cancellations 100%
Courses dropped by the end of week one 100%
Courses dropped by the end of week two 50%
Courses dropped after the end of week two 0%
Course cancellations 100%

Tax Credits

There may be tax benefits for what you pay for qualified education expenses. For more information, we recommend you consult a tax professional or visit the website

Bursar’s Office
Phone: 1-877-747-7719
Office Hours: Monday thru Friday 7:30am-3:30pm Cashier’s Office
Phone: 1-877-397-7502; 1-505-473-6411
Office Hours: Monday thru Friday 8:00am-12:00 and 1:00pm-5:00pm