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Financial Aid Refund Policy

Financial Aid Refund Policy

Students are eligible to receive a financial aid refund when their financial aid/scholarships exceed the allowable charges their student account. We say allowable charges because federal financial aid funds are restricted in what they can cover. Federal financial aid can only be applied directly to what are termed as "institutional charges". This includes items such as tuition/fees and on campus housing charges. Other items such as parking permits, printing charges, health services charges, etc. cannot be paid directly by federal financial aid funds. Even if a student receives a financial aid refund they should still be checking their monthly eBill statements as they still may owe a balance on their student account.

Direct Deposit

OSU offers students the option of signing up for direct deposit for their financial aid refunds. Direct deposit benefits students in a number of ways:

  • No lost or stolen checks or delay with the mail
  • No running to the bank to deposit funds and then waiting for the check to clear
  • No special arrangements because a student is not on campus, studying abroad, or not moved into their apartment yet
  • It puts students in control over their time and money.

Students receiving refunds that have not signed up for direct deposit will receive paper checks which are mailed to the current mailing address on record.

Signing up for Direct Deposit

Signing up for direct deposit is easy:

  • Log on to Student Online Services.
  • Click on Personal Information
  • Select View or Update Direct Deposit Authorization
  • Enter banking information under Student Accounts/Employee Payables

 Please note that direct deposit for financial aid refunds is separate from direct deposit for payroll checks. Students can also print off the Direct Deposit Authorization form online and bring it to the Cashier's Office in Kerr. Once students have submitted their information it takes approximately three weeks for direct deposit to be set up. Generally if we receive the information by the 10th of the month, it will be set up by the first day of the following month. If a refund processes for a student before the direct deposit set up is complete, the student will receive a paper check.

Once a financial aid refund is initiated, it can take up to three business days before the funds are transferred to the student's bank account. If, due to any action taken by the student, the student's financial institution is not able to deposit any transfer to the student's account, the University cannot process supplemental financial aid until the funds are returned by the student's financial institution.

We strongly urge students to verify that funds have been transferred to their bank account before they write checks against their refund. If a student's financial aid is not ready for release for any reason, it will not appear in their bank account when they expect it. OSU is not responsible for bank charges that students may incur by writing checks on an unconfirmed deposit.

Paper Checks

Students electing to receive paper checks should ensure that their current mailing address is up to date. Students can update their current mailing address anytime online at Student Online Services under "Personal Information." All paper checks are mailed to the student's current mailing address on file, so it is critical that students keep this address up to date.

Lost, Missing, Destroyed or Stolen Checks

Students who were issued a refund check and have never received the check, lost the check, destroyed the check by mistake, or had the check stolen may request a replacement check. Replacement checks can only be issued after 10 business days from the date of the original check. Students requiring a replacement check may request one at the Student Accounts Office (Windows 13 or 14) in the Kerr Administration building. Staff members will check the account to verify when the original check was issued and that it has not been cashed. If all requirements are met, a replacement check will be issued. Students must present two forms of picture ID when requesting a replacement check.

Students should remember to keep their banking information and address current to ensure that they receive their direct deposit funds and related correspondence in a timely manner.

Additional Refund Policy Information

First Two Weeks of Each Term

Accounts will be reviewed on a daily basis and refunds will be issued to all students who have refunds due to them as a result of financial aid/scholarships having been applied to their accounts.

After The First Two Weeks of the Term

Students must request their refunds.  To request a refund students need to send their requests to refund@oregonstate.edu.   Students should be sure to include their name, student ID number and date of birth.  Due to the complexity in the calculation of the refund amount, refund checks cannot be processed “at the window.”