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Student Account Refunds

Student Account Refund Basics

What is a refund?
Refunds are processed when the amount of funds applied to a student account exceed the total semester charges.

Refunds are not issued for credit balances less than $5.00
What are the steps involved to receive a refund?
Before a refund can be processed, several things need to happen:
  • Funding must be secured by the student
  • Funding must be received and applied to the student account by SFS
  • Refund must be processed and sent by SFS
To who are refunds issued?
Refunds are issued to the following:

Student -part or all of the credit balance is created by funds in the student’s name.


Parent PLUS Loan Borrower - all or part of the credit balance is created by the Parent PLUS loan and the parent did not authorize the refund to be issued to the student. Parent PLUS Loan Refunds are issued to the student when the Parent PLUS Loan borrower selects the student refund preference on the PLUS Loan application. Refunds will be issued to the parent borrower if no student release is authorized on the PLUS Loan application.
  • In the event more than one Parent PLUS Loan borrower is on file, a refund is issued to both parent borrowers. The refund amount is determined by the percentage of the cumulative PLUS loan amount disbursed for the academic year by each borrower. The graphs below illustrate an example of how refunds are issued for multiple borrowers.
  • Refunds are issued to the student when at least one parent borrower authorizes refunds released to the student. Upon receipt of this request, all subsequent PLUS loan refunds for the academic year will be issued to the student regardless of subsequent Parent PLUS Loan applications received.
  • If the parent borrower(s) want to change to whom the refund is issued (parent/student) after an application has been processed, they must complete a Refund Release Form and change the refund recipient. Refund Release Forms are available by contacting SFS and are processed within 10 business days of receipt. The Refund Release Form must be reviewed and approved by SFS prior to the issuance of a subsequent refund for which the parent borrower is requesting the change.


Refund Calculation for Multiple Parent Borrowers





Combined PLUS Loan Amount
Loan 1 $3,000 $6,000 -----------
Loan 2 $2,000 ---------- -----------
Total Borrowed $5,000


Percentage Borrowed 45% 55% 100%
Total Refund of $3,500 Distributed by Borrower based on Percentage Borrowed $1,575 $1,925 -----------

PLUS Loan     plus loan 2

How are refunds issued?
SFS encourages all students and/or parent borrowers to sign up for Direct Deposit (D2U) to expedite the refund process. If no Direct Deposit account is on file, refunds are mailed to the mailing address on file.
What is the Account Inactivity Fee
The Account Inactivity Fee is charged to the student tuition account when a student has been separated from the college for more than 90 days and has a cumulative credit balance of less than $5.00 on their tuition account.  The amount of the Fee is the amount of the remaining credit balance on the account.  In addition, any unused Columbia Cash funds are withdrawn from the student’s Campus Card and the funds are credited to their tuition account 30 days after they separate from the college.
I think my financial plan should include a refund. How do I determine how much I will need?
Funds can come from various funding sources. When the funds obtained exceed the total billed charges it can result in an overpayment on your student account thus creating a refund. You can use the CRCW - Cost Resources Comparison Worksheet to calculate your direct and indirect costs to accurately determine the amount of funds you need and how much you may need to plan to receive in a refund. Refunds are intended to pay for educational expenses such as transportation, books and supplies, personal expenses and off-campus housing.
I only need my refund for books. Is there another option?
Yes. You can obtain funds to purchase books through our book charge program.
Why did I get a refund if I still have a balance?
Federal Financial Aid from the current academic year cannot be used to pay an unpaid balance from a prior academic year. You may have been issued a Federal Loan refund for the current academic year but may still owe a past due balance for charges incurred prior to the current semester. Registration for future semesters will be restricted until your account balance is current.
Please review your student account on Oasis to determine if you still have a remaining balance due on your student account.
Will a change in enrollment status (i.e. adding or dropping classes) after a refund is processed affect my student account?
Yes, it can. A change in your enrollment status after a refund is issued will result in a change in your student account charges and financial aid awards. You may owe a balance to the college as the result of additional tuition charges or as a result of a reduction in your financial aid awards. Please always consult with Student Financial Services before you drop or withdraw from courses to discuss the possible effects to your student account.
When will I receive my refund?
Funds secured by the Priority Deadline are applied to the student account one week before classes begin to ensure refunds are processed by the end of the first week of classes each semester.

Funding secured after the start of the semester will take 20 - 30 business days for the funds to be applied to the student account. After funds are applied to the account it will take 3-5 business days for the refund to be processed.

The amount of time it will take to have the funds in your possession after the refund is processed will depend on whether the refund was processed as a paper check or direct deposit.
Will I receive a notification when my refund is processed?
Yes, SFS will email a refund confirmation to the payee at the time the refund is processed. If the payee is the student the email will be sent to the student’s Loop Mail. If the payee is the plus loan borrower the email will be sent to email address provided on the plus loan application.
How will I receive my refund?
Refund checks can be directly deposited into the payee’s bank account or mailed to the payee.
Will my student account reflect the processing of a refund?
Yes. Refunds on your account that were directly deposited into your bank account will be displayed in CCCPay; Check with your bank to match up the amounts and ensure you received them or view student account detail to confirm processing of all refund checks including paper checks. In the event you are positive you did not receive a refund check, contact SFS.
What is the fastest way to receive a refund?
Direct Deposit is the fastest way to receive a refund. This option allows the recipient to have the funds available in their chosen bank account within 3 - 5 days of the refund being processed. If the payee is the parent the parent can only sign up for direct deposit if the student gives access to the parent to become a CCCPay Authorized Payer.

D2U – Direct Refund is the fastest and most secure way to receive your student account refund. Students, Authorized Payers and Parent Plus Loan borrowers can receive their refunds by Direct Deposit (D2U) to their bank account. Refunds issued through D2U will be deposited directly into your bank account within 3 business days. No more waiting for a paper check to arrive through the mail. Enrollment in D2U is fast, easy and secure. Simply log into CCCPay, select the Direct Deposit menu option and enter your name, address, phone number and bank account information.
Please click here for D2U enrollment instructions

Students – Log into the Oasis Portal, select the Student Financial Services tab at the top of the page, then click on the link Online Payment and Billing/CCCPay. Select the Direct Deposit menu option and enter your name, address, phone and bank account information. You will receive an immediate confirmation and your D2U enrollment will be activated within 48 hours.

Parents – Your Parent PLUS Loan refund can now be deposited directly to your bank account. You must be signed up as an Authorized Payer by your student in order to enroll in D2U. For more information about Authorized Payers, click here. Click here to logon to CCCPay. Select the Direct Deposit menu option and enter your name, address, phone and bank account information.
  1. You will receive an immediate confirmation and your D2U enrollment will be activated within 48 hours.
  2. Direct Deposit bank account profiles will remain active until the user cancels the profile.
  3. In the event your direct deposit refund transaction failed as the result of a closed account or incorrect account information, you will be notified via email and your D2U direct deposit profile will be deactivated. A refund check will be mailed to the payee’s address within 3 -5 business days. You may add a new D2U direct deposit profile to receive future refunds electronically.

Frequently Asked Questions

What do I do if I did not receive my anticipated direct deposit refund?
First check your personal bank account to ensure the funds were not received.  If your funds are not available the direct deposit transaction may have failed due to a closed account or inaccurate account information.  If your transaction failed you will be notified via Loop Mail and your D2U direct deposit profile will automatically be deactivated. A refund check will be put in the mail to the payee’s address within 3 -5 business days so it is important you verify that your mailing address is always updated. You may add a new D2U direct deposit profile to receive future refunds electronically.
What do I need to consider if I do not sign up for direct deposit and prefer to receive a paper check?
Paper check refunds payable to the student are mailed to the student’s mailing address. Parent PLUS Loan refund checks payable to the parent borrower are mailed to the parent’s address provided on the original PLUS Loan application. Once it is mailed delivery time will depend on the U.S. Postal Service. Please allow ten business days to receive a mailed refund.  Once you receive your check you will need to deposit the check into a bank account or present it for cash.  Banks have individual requirements and timeframes for this process.
What do I do if did not receive my paper check refund?
If you do not receive your paper refund check within 10 business days of the refund email notification, contact Student Financial Services at 866-705-0200. If the check was mailed to an incorrect address, you will be required to either update the address or enroll in D2U direct deposit before the refund is reissued.  Students can update their address through the Oasis Portal. Parents will need to provide signed notification requesting a change of address.
Does a paper refund expire?
Paper check refunds are voided after 90 days. It your refund has expired please contact our office to find out if it can be reissued. Refunds not cashed within a certain amount of time may be turned over to the state as unclaimed property or returned to the federal direct lender if the funds derived from a federal loan.
Returned Refunds by the US Postal Service
Refunds may be returned to SFS by the US Postal Service if the mailing address is incorrect or if you are no longer residing at this address. You will be notified by email if this occurs. Please make sure if you prefer your refund be mailed you have the correct mailing address on file.