Aid & billing updates related to COVID-19

The health and safety of students, faculty and staff remains UNC Charlotte’s top priority. The University has been monitoring the rapidly evolving situation around coronavirus (COVID-19) and has been working in close collaboration with local and state resources.


Below are the most recent updates regarding financial aid and billing.

 

Satisfactory Academic Progress

  • All students are required to maintain a certain level of academic performance in order to be eligible for financial aid. This is known as Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).
     
  • Some of the changes related to the COVID-19 operation changes for Spring 2020 will affect how the Office of Financial Aid will your academic progress.
    • GPA Calculation 
      • If you elect to use the Pass/NC Option option on one or more of your classes during the Spring 2020 semester, those classes will not count toward the GPA calculation for Academic Progress. 
         
    • Completion Rate Calculation
      • Any attempted credits that were not completed during the Spring 2020 semester will be excluded from the completion rate calculation. This means that any class that was attempted during the term in which you didn’t earn the credits through a passing grade will not be counted against your completion rate for the semester.

CARES Act

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act provides approximately $12 million in funding to UNC Charlotte for distribution to qualifying undergraduate and graduate students to help cover expenses related to the disruption of spring 2020 campus operations due to COVID-19. Funds will begin to be distributed in mid-May.

Eligibility and Distribution of Funds

  • This money will be distributed to those students identified as having the highest need based on their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • Approximately 74% of the funds will be given out immediately to students with the most significant need in the form of block grants in set amounts.
    • A student’s Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) will be used to determine if they qualify for block grant funding and only those students with the most significant need will be given a block grant. 
    • No application is needed to be eligible for the block grant because distribution is based on your FAFSA information. 
  • The other 26% of the CARES funding will be given out in emergency aid throughout the summer and fall via an application review process. 
    • Students who did not receive CARES Act block grant funding, or whose financial situation has changed since filing their FAFSA, may request funds by completing the Emergency Aid application
    • Graduating seniors are eligible to apply for funds using the Emergency Aid application.
  • Requests will exceed funding availability. Not everyone who meets the criteria will receive grant funds.

Please review details about eligibility requirements and FAQs on the NinerNationCares website.


UNC Charlotte Emergency Fund for Students

 
  • The UNC Charlotte Emergency Fund helps current students by providing financial support when they need assistance with unexpected, unforeseen, and unavoidable emergency expenses, including the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Currently enrolled students can apply for an Emergency Fund grant via this website.

Housing & Meal Plan Refunds

  • Refund amounts will be posted in student accounts on Wednesday, April 15. Please allow additional time for mailing and direct deposit processing. 
  • Housing refunds are calculated based on the 48 days between March 21, the day after students were instructed to leave campus, and May 8, the end of the housing contract. You will receive refunds for 48/124 days (38.7%) of the original contract amount.
  • Meal plan refunds are also calculated based on the housing contract dates (48/124 days). Refunds are based on the type of meal plan you signed up for. View details on the Meal Plan Refund Information web page.
  • If you have a balance due on your student account (from Spring 2020 and/or prior terms), any refunds will first be applied to your outstanding balance. Any remainder will be paid back to you via direct deposit or check. 
  • To view the amount of your housing/meal plan refund or to see if you have a balance due on your account, go tMy UNC Charlotte and click the View Account & Statements button in the My Student Account block.
  • International students - If you originally paid through Flywire and are due a refund, you will receive your refund via direct deposit/mailed check unless you specifically request payment via Flywire by contacting Niner Central.

Parking Refunds

  • Parking refund amounts will be posted in student accounts on Wednesday, April 15. Please allow additional time for mailing and direct deposit processing.
  • Parking refunds are based on the date that classes moved to online delivery (March 16).
  • If you have any outstanding parking fines, any refund will first be applied to your outstanding parking balance.  To see if you have any outstanding parking fines, view your account in the parking portal.
  • If you have a balance due on your student account (from Spring 2020 and/or prior terms), any refund will also be applied to your outstanding student account balance. Any remainder will be disbursed to you via direct deposit or check. 
  • To view the amount of your parking refund or to see if you have a balance due on your account, go to My UNC Charlotte and click the View Account & Statements button in the My Student Account block.

Timing of Refunds

  • Direct Deposit is the fastest and most secure way to receive your refund. By electing this option, your refund will be directly deposited into your checking or savings account, at the financial institution of your choice, which will ultimately be faster than waiting for the check to arrive in the mail. 
  • If you have direct deposit, you will receive your refund 3 to 5 days from the date the refund was posted to your student account.
  • If you don’t have direct deposit, a paper check will be mailed to your permanent address. Please allow 5 to 7 days from the date the refund was posted to your student account.
  • You can confirm that your refund has been processed by viewing your Account Activity.  There will be a line item posted that reads "Refund," as well as the date and amount.

Reconsideration requests for changes in financial circumstances

  • Your financial aid offer for 2020 is based on 2018 tax information.
  • If you feel that your current financial circumstances are not reflected correctly in your 2018 tax return, complete this form to request a reconsideration.
  • Examples of circumstances which may warrant a Reconsideration are: job loss, death of parent or spouse, separation or divorce of parents, high unreimbursed medical and dental bills and receipt of one time payments.

Student Loans

  • The Department of Education (ED) officially announced Wednesday it has stopped requests to withhold the wages, tax refunds, and Social Security benefits of borrowers who are in default on their federal student loans for at least the next 60 days as a means of relief during the novel coronavirus outbreak

Students with outstanding balances or past due installment payments

We understand you may be facing increased financial difficulties during this time, and we want to offer the most flexibility possible. 

  • If you owe more than $2000 on your account and you have a registration hold:
    • We will remove your registration hold if pay your balance down to less than $2,000, and we will allow until your next enrolled term’s payment due date (May 19 for summer or August 12 for fall) for you to pay off any remaining balance for both terms. 
  • If you are in a payment plan and can't pay your next installment, and you have a registration hold on your account:
    • To release the hold, we will only require you to pay your payment plan through the installment due February 28. We will allow until your next enrolled term’s payment due date (May 19 for summer or August 12 for fall) for you to pay off any remaining balance for both terms.

Students with Federal Work-Study Jobs

  • While on-campus operations are minimized due to the COVID-19 situation, please communicate with your supervisor regarding your options for continuing to work.
  • If your supervisor agrees that you have work that can be performed online, we encourage you to work your regularly allotted weekly hours, and submit timesheets based on those scheduled hours.
    • For example, if before campus operations changed you were working 11 hours per week, then you should continue to work 11 hours and submit a time sheet for 11 hours per week.
  • If you cannot or are not able to work (either remotely or off campus), please contact your supervisor for further instructions.

Study Abroad

  • The Office of Education Abroad (OEA) will determine which program costs, if any, are refundable and will communicate that information to students.  
  • After contacting OEA, you may speak with a Niner Central student services representative to determine if any changes will need to be made to your financial aid package.
  • This will be done on a case by case basis.