Inadvertent Overborrowing and Reaffirmation

If you exceed your aggregate or annual borrowing limits (you can find these limits at studentaid.ed.gov), you are no longer eligible for any form of financial aid until they reestablish your eligibility. 

You must reestablish your eligibility if you want to use any of your remaining financial aid eligibility during the award year. Without reestablishing your eligibility you cannot receive Pell, FSEOG, MAP, FWS funds, Stafford, or PLUS loans. (Please note that if you are not Pell or MAP eligible and have exhausted your Stafford loan eligibility, you may choose not to reestablish your eligibility.)

For questions about how you inadvertently borrowed more than your limit, please check with your Federal Loan Servicer. If you have problems identifying your Federal Loan Servicer, please contact Columbia Central.

Reestablishing Eligibility

First, contact your Federal Loan Servicer, who will provide detailed instructions about the steps you need to take. 

To establish your eligibility, you can either repay the excess loan amount in full, or make repayment arrangements with your Federal Loan Servicer (a process called Reaffirmation).

  • If you repay your excess loan amount

    Once you have repaid the excess amount in full, your Federal Loan Servicer will send you a confirmation message. You must submit a copy of this confirmation to Columbia Central, along with your name and MyColumbia ID. We will review the documentation and determine your aid eligibility based on the information provided.

     

  • If you make satisfactory repayment options (reaffirmation)

    If you received notification from Columbia Central that included the "Reaffirmation Request" form, you may complete it and return it to columbia Central. Once we receive your signed form, we will initiate the reaffirmation process with your Federal Loan Servicer on your behalf. 

    Note: Columbia Central will only initiate the reaffirmation process for currently-enrolled Columbia students.

    If you did not receive a notification and want to initiate the process yourself, or if you are no longer enrolled at Columbia, you may contact your Federal Loan Servicer and indicate that you want to reaffirm the debt to reestablish your eligibility.

    After you receive the Reaffirmation Agreement from your Federal Loan Servicer, you must read, sign, and return the agreement to your servicer. Keep a copy for your records! Once you receive confirmation from your Federal Loan Servicer that your reaffirmation agreement has been accepted, you must submit a copy of this confirmation to Columbia Central, along with your name and MyColumbia ID. We will review the documentation and determine your aid eligibility based on the information provided. 

    We recommend you allow at least 4-6 weeks for the reaffirmation process, once the request has been initiated.

Additional Assistance

If you're having difficulties working with your Federal Loan Servicer, we encourage you to contact the Federal Student Aid Ombudsman. 

Please note that Columbia Central is unable to contact your Federal Loan Servicer or the Ombudsman on your behalf. 

Academic Dates and Deadlines