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Terms and Conditions of Award

To apply for federal and state student aid, students must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) annually to be considered for each academic year. A student has the right to decline all or a portion of any aid offered. By accepting financial aid awards, the student agrees to comply with the terms and conditions listed in the Montevallo Student Aid Office Terms and Conditions information.

The terms and conditions information is subject to change as a result of action by Federal and/or State governments, the Board of Trustees of Montevallo, and the Administration of Montevallo. Questions concerning the content of the terms and conditions information should be directed to the Montevallo Student Aid Office.

Financial Aid Definitions
(What does that mean?)

Montevallo has a strong tradition of helping students finance their undergraduate education. The following definitions should help students/families understand some of the terms used in financial aid programs.

  • Types of Aid

    Scholarships and Grants: Sometimes referred to as “gift aid”, scholarships and grants are financial aid that does not have to be repaid or earned through employment and is awarded on the basis of merit and/or need.

    Educational Loans: Loans are a type of “self-help” aid that is borrowed money to help cover the costs of attending college and must be repaid. Student loan programs offer low interest rates and are not repaid until after students graduate, drop below half-time status, or withdraw. Parent loan programs offer the parents the opportunity to borrow to assist with educational expenses.

    Federal Work-Study (FWS): FWS is a federal funded aid program designed to help students offset some education costs through part-time employment opportunities. Student Employment is considered another “self-help” type of financial aid.

  • Cost of Attendance

    Estimated Cost of Attendance: is used to determine your need for financial aid and to prepare an aid package budget. This includes estimates for fixed costs such as fees and tuition and allowances for variable costs such as books and supplies, housing and food, transportation, and personal expenses (including expenses that are not billed by Montevallo).

    Tuition/Fees: are estimates and will be paid directly to the Montevallo. You will receive a bill for the amount due from the Cashier’s Office after you register for classes. Electronic bills are emailed to students.

    Books and Supplies: is an estimated expense amount for the materials required for class.

    Room and Board: is an expense amount for food and shelter while living on campus, off campus or commuting from home during the period of enrollment. Expenses for housing and food and how they are paid will vary depending on where you will live. Charges for Montevallo housing are assessed by the Montevallo according to the residence hall and meal plan selected and are billed by the Cashier’s Office.

    Transportation: a personal estimated expense amount for travel back and forth from permanent place of residence and around campus.

    Personal Expenses: an estimated personal amount for miscellaneous expenses for personal hygiene, health, loan fees, parking fee, and/or fridge fee, etc.

    Loan Fees: an estimated expense amount based on fees charged to the loan borrower.

    Dependent Care or Disability Related Expenses: an expense allowance for students with dependents or disabilities who may incur dependent care or disability related expenses to enable them to attend classes. Contact the Student Aid Office if you anticipate incurring these expenses.

  • Calculating Aid Eligibility

    Expected Family Contribution (EFC): represents the amount you and your parents (if classified as a dependent student), or you (if classified as an independent student) and your spouse (if married) are expected to be able to provide to help meet your expenses for the enrollment period. You will not receive a bill for the EFC. Your EFC was calculated using a federal formula based on information you and your family provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and other documents submitted to our office.

    Total Financial Aid Eligibility: is the sum of the assistance for which you are eligible.

    Total Financial Need: is calculated by subtracting the EFC, total financial aid eligibility, and estimated other aid from the estimated cost of attendance.

    Unmet Financial Need: is the difference between your need and total aid that is considered in meeting your financial need.

    Award Messages: provide information and/or conditions of a particular type of aid, assumptions we have made in determining your eligibility, actions you need to take, reasons for revisions, etc. Read these messages carefully and take any action that may be required. These messages are found on your forUM account under the Financial Aid tab.

Financial Aid Conditions

By accepting your financial aid awards, you agree to comply with the terms and conditions listed below and within the Financial Aid Award.

    1. I understand that my financial aid eligibility is determined in accordance with laws, regulations and appropriations (existing or anticipated) of the U.S. Congress, the U. S. Department of Education, the Alabama State Legislature or the state legislature of your state of residency, Montevallo, and other donors.
    2. I understand that my financial aid eligibility is subject to adjustment or cancellation in the event changes occur in laws, regulations or appropriations during the period of my award.
    3. I agree to notify the Student Aid Office of the sources and amount of my financial assistance that I may receive from other sources including scholarships, loans, tuition waivers, assistantships, fellowships, educational benefits, etc., which do not appear on my Financial Aid Award. I further understand that if additional assistance reduces my eligibility, an adjustment in my awards may be necessary. This adjustment may include the return of loan funds to my lender/servicer or the necessity to repay other types of assistance already received.
    4. I understand that my aid eligibility is based on the financial information provided by me and/or my family, and that it is subject to adjustment or cancellation if changes occur or if errors are subsequently discovered.
    5. I understand that in order to receive financial aid I must be making satisfactory academic progress toward my degree as described in the satisfactory academic progress policy.
    6. I understand Pell Grant eligibility is limited to the equivalent of 12 full-time (12 or more credit hours) semesters.
    7. Unless otherwise communicated to me, I understand that I must be enrolled full-time to receive all of my financial aid awards (12 credit hours each semester as an undergraduate; 9 credit hours each semester as a graduate or professional student). Student loans require at least one-half time enrollment (6 hours for undergraduate or 5 hours for graduate students).
    8. If I withdraw from the Montevallo, stop attending classes before the end of the term or do not initiate course participation in any classes, I understand that I may be expected to repay all or a portion of my aid funds. Contact the Student Aid Office before leaving school. See Consequences of Withdrawal for more information. I agree to follow the Montevallo of Montevallo withdrawal procedures available from the Registrar’s Office.
    9. I understand that I must meet repayment obligations on any educational loan and repay any financial aid funds due as a result of withdrawal or an over award situation, or I will not be eligible for future financial aid, and I may have a hold placed on my Montevallo records.
    10. I understand that I may have to take additional action before my aid will be finalized (on my Financial Aid Award) if an award is listed as “offered” or “estimated.” Furthermore, I understand that no funds will be disbursed from these aid types until all required actions are completed.
    11. I understand that if I am a transfer student my aid eligibility is subject to adjustment or cancellation based on information received regarding aid usage at my previous institution.
    12. If I am offered and accept Federal Work-Study (FWS), I understand it is my responsibility to secure a FWS position and turn in a Student Personnel Action Form to my employer within the first 30 days of the initial term for my award. Further I understand I earn my award money in wages paid by my employer and will receive a payroll check, as described on the Federal Work Study page.
    13. If I accept a loan, I understand that I am required to sign a promissory note. I understand I am fully responsible for repaying the loan and meeting all other terms and conditions of the loan, including notifying the lender or loan servicer if I move or change my address or if I change my name.
    14. I understand that I must not be in default on any federal education loans or owe any refunds on federal funds that I have received at Montevallo or any other post-secondary institution.
    15. I understand that if I want to borrow from the Federal Direct Sub/Unsub or PLUS Loan programs, I must follow the instructions provided on the Federal Direct Loan Checklist. I also understand that Federal PLUS and private loans require a credit check before any application will be processed and that I am responsible for any balance owed if a loan is denied.
    16. I understand that I must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year that I wish to be considered for financial aid. Montevallo requires the FAFSA to be filed by March 1 for priority consideration.
    17. I understand that eligibility for Federal and State of Alabama student aid will be based on the number of credit hours in which I am enrolled as of the census date, generally the end of the first week of classes of each semester.
    1. I understand that the Student Aid Office communicates updates and important reminders via email to a student’s ForUM email account. It is important to read any email from finaid@montevallo.edu, as this is the listed sender for most student aid email contacts.

    As a student loan borrower I have the right to:

      • Written information on my loan obligations and information on my rights and responsibilities as a borrower
      • A payment grace period and explanation of what this term means
      • A disclosure statement received before I begin to repay my loan that includes information about interest rates, fees, the balance I owe and the number of payments
      • Deferment of repayment for certain defined periods, if I qualify and if I request it
      • Forbearance if I qualify and if I request it
      • Prepayment of my loan in whole or in part any time without an early-repayment penalty
      • A copy of my promissory note either before or at the time my loan is disbursed
      • Documentation that my loan is paid in full
    1. Important Student and Parent Consumer Information should be reviewed.
    1. By accepting your award, you are authorizing the Student Aid Office to release information about the amount and type of aid you are receiving to other offices and agencies as it may be needed to administer the financial aid programs. This includes the release of information for collection of student loans in the event repayment obligations are not met. You also agree to allow the release of your major, grade point average, and general biographical information to donors of any scholarship or special funds which you may receive.
    1. Textbooks may be purchased by students eligible for Federal Student Aid and who have a credit balance prior to the first day of school in the Barnes and Noble Bookstore.
    1. Summer Federal Student Aid is based on the total hours for which you enroll during the summer (May, Summer I, and Summer II) and any remaining eligibility you may have for the year. Summer eligibility is reviewed automatically after you register for classes.

Billing and Disbursement Process

By accepting your financial aid awards, you agree to comply with the terms and conditions listed below and above.

    1. Authorized Aid is an estimate of available financial aid funds temporarily assigned to the student’s account before disbursement occurs. This allows for a more accurate reflection of term balances due based upon the anticipated financial aid. Payments will not be released to the student prior to the receipt of anticipated funds and the “authorized award” becomes an “actual award.”
    2. Disbursement is the process by which assigned aid is actually placed on the student’s Montevallo account. Refunding is the process where the student receives payment of funds from his/her financial aid in excess of bills due the Montevallo via direct deposit or in the form of a physical check.
    3. Students must be officially registered for the semester and meet enrollment criteria (i.e., full-time enrollment) before any financial aid funds will be disbursed. Financial aid funds will be credited to the student’s account in the following sequence; a) fees and tuition; b) Montevallo housing (if applicable); c) authorized miscellaneous charges (if applicable).
    4. If aid funds remain after fees/tuition and Montevallo housing (if applicable) accounts, and any authorized miscellaneous charges are paid for the semester, the Cashier’s Office will issue a refund to the student no earlier than the third week of each semester.
    5. The Montevallo estimates your award for the Federal Pell Grant based on full time enrollment. IMPORTANT: Students seeking to drop classes below 12 semester hours for undergraduates or 9 semester hours for graduate students at or before the census date, generally the end of the first week of classes, should speak to a financial aid counselor regarding their course load; the reduced hours could result in a loss or reduction of their award package.
    6. Student Loans accepted on the forUM portal will not appear as “authorized aid” and credited toward the bill in anticipation of their arrival until the student completes all requirements and the loan is approved by the Federal Government. Funds from Federal Direct and PLUS Loan programs cannot be disbursed until the Cashier’s Office receives the funds from the Federal Government.
    7. PLUS loan funds will be reflected on the student’s account as a credit toward tuition/fees and Montevallo housing (if applicable), and any authorized miscellaneous charges.
    8. Private loans will not show as authorized aid and will only disburse to a student’s Montevallo account once funds are received from the lender.
    9. Academic year Federal Direct and PLUS funds will be disbursed in two equal installments; however, a student may make a request to the Student Aid Office to change an academic year Direct loan to a one-semester loan. The loan will be disbursed in two equal installments during the semester. If the loan period on the student’s Federal Stafford or Federal PLUS application is for the academic year, the loan funds will be disbursed at the beginning of each semester. If the loan period is for one term the funds will be disbursed ½ at the beginning of the term and ½ at the mid-point of the term. First time, first year borrowers will receive loan funds approximately 30 days after classes start.
    10. Montevallo of Montevallo offers electronic funds transfer (EFT) of student credit balances (portion not applied to fees, Montevallo housing or authorized miscellaneous charges) directly to the student’s U.S. checking or savings account. This is the safest and quickest way to have excess funds deposited, and students are notified via email when their deposit has been made. Approximately 7 to 14 days after the credit appears on your student account a refund will be issued either via direct deposit, or a paper check will be mailed to the current mailing or permanent address on file in Banner Self Services. To sign up for direct deposit for student account refunds students must obtain a form from the Cashier’s Office and return it to the Cashier’s Office with a voided check. A photo ID must be shown when the form is turned in by the student.
    11. Federal Work-Study funds are not “disbursed” to a student account; these funds are earned and paid for hours worked on a biweekly basis.
    12. If a student’s aid is increased for any reason after the initial disbursement, subsequent payments are refunded by the Cashier’s Office. If aid is decreased, a bill may be created listing the current amount due. Failure to pay the amount due will result in a hold placed upon the student account, which can affect future aid eligibility, and the student’s Montevallo records.
    13. Actual scholarship funds from a donor outside the Montevallo will be disbursed to a student’s account in the same manner as noted in item 3. Funds from scholarship donors outside the Montevallo will not apply to Montevallo charges prior to the receipt of funds. Federal and state aid disbursements are subject to federal and state refund policies; See the Cashier’s Office Refund Policy  for more information.

    Students/parents awarded Federal Direct Sub/Unsub, Direct PLUS or Perkins loans have the right to cancel or reduce the loan awarded. Students can contact the Student Aid Office to cancel or reduce a loan disbursement.

Direct Cost Worksheet

The Student Aid Office recommends students complete a worksheet to estimate how much they will be billed by Montevallo and to estimate a balance due or refund amount after aid assignment and disbursement.

  • Step 1: Estimate your expected bills for tuition and fees and campus housing:

    Tuition/Fees Estimate $____________
    Campus Housing/Food Estimate +$____________
    Total Estimated Billing =$____________ (A)
  • Step 2: List total expected financial aid awards you plan to receive as listed on your Financial Aid Award:

    Grants and Scholarships Total (outside/private scholarships cannot be counted until actual funds are received) $_____________
    Student Loan Total (if you plan to apply for student loans) +$_____________
    Parent Loan Total (if you plan to apply for parent loans) +$_____________
    Total Estimated Financial Aid =$_____________ (B)
  • Step 3: Subtract Total Estimated Financial Aid (B) from Total Estimated Billing (A) to determine estimated balance due or refund amount from Cashier:

    Total Estimated Billing $_____________ (A)
    Total Estimated Financial Aid +$_____________ (B)
    Estimated Balance Due or Excess Funds (Refund Amount) =$_____________ *

    *If academic year figures are used, you will need to divide by two (2) to determine balance due or excess funds per semester. A positive amount reflects the estimated balance due, and a negative number reflects the estimated excess funds (refund) amount.