Late Refund Checks Won’t Keep The Lights On

By: Cody Dowler

CHATTANOOGA, TN (UTC/The Loop) –  A few unlucky UTC students have reported troubles they’ve had receiving money from financial aid. This has resulted in students receiving refund checks up to 3 weeks late.

My late refund check added late fees to my utility bills
Late refund checks have added late fees to utility bills.
Photo from Salon.com

As many students know, whenever you take out a federal loan you must sign something called a master promissory note which basically is your promise to the government that you will pay them back for your loan.

Some students waited two weeks after the refunds were supposed to be given out before going to the financial aid office to find out what was wrong. This is because they originally thought the problem was with the bursar’s office.

The financial aid office said they hadn’t received some students master promissory notes yet. These students became furious at this point and let the office know it very well. Students complained about being late on rent, Comcast, and EPB bills, and also about receiving late fees for each of these bills all because financial aid hadn’t received the promissory note yet.

As it turns out, they found these promissory notes the following day and these students received refunds the following Wednesday which was 3 weeks later than most people.

Josh Hawkins, a senior from Dickson, said, “I’ve had quite a few issues with receiving my money on time from financial aid. This semester I got my refund two weeks later than everyone else.”

When asked about how much he was depending on that refund money, Hawkins said, “I needed it really badly, I had to call home and ask my parents to pay my rent for the month. If my rent wasn’t so cheap though, they wouldn’t have been able to pay it. I don’t know what would’ve happened then.”

Sylvia Graves helping out a student in the financial aid office

Sylvia Graves helps out a student in the financial aid office

Sylvia Graves, a student services assistant who works in the financial aid department, said, “Yes, sometimes we do misplace things. We’re not perfect and it is important that students bring their issues to our attention. We can always hand out emergency loans if students need money immediately while we resolve whatever issues there may be.”

For more information on emergency loans and financial aid services, click here

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