Financial Aid

News & Analysis as of

The Nuts and Bolts of Reauthorization

As most in higher education are aware, Congress is currently working to reauthorize the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), the seminal legislation that created and governs the administration of the federal...more

CFPB Files Suit Against Student Financial Aid Company

On October 29, the CFPB filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California against a California-based student financial aid operation and its owner (Defendants). According to the complaint,...more

CFPB sues company and owner for alleged student financial aid scam

A new lawsuit filed by the CFPB in a California federal district court alleges that the defendants, a company and its individual owner, are engaged in a nationwide student financial aid scam. In addition to injunctive relief,...more

Ninth Circuit Holds That NCAA’s Amateurism Rules Violate Section 1 of the Sherman Act

In a decision handed down on September 30th, the Ninth Circuit affirmed in part and reversed in part the District Court’s ruling that the NCAA’s “amateurism” rules unlawfully restrained trade in the market for certain...more

Alert: New Proposal Offers Limited Access to Federal Student Aid for Alternative Providers

On October 15, 2015, the US Department of Education ("ED") issued a long-awaited notice announcing an "Experimental Sites Initiative" ("ESI") to permit limited access to federal loan and grant programs for students enrolled...more

Alert: ED Guidance on Competency-Based Education: Barriers to Adoption Remain

Institutions that are in the process of developing competency-based education ("CBE") programs now have a clearer window to the US Department of Education's perspective on how federal student financial aid rules can...more

Is Your Institution Ready for the October 1 Clery Report Deadline?

By October 1, all colleges and universities that participate in federal financial aid programs must publish and distribute to all current and prospective students and employees an Annual Security and Fire Safety Report. As in...more

Alert: "Ability to Benefit" is Back, But Not the Same

Recently, a number of third-party test providers have begun promoting the Department of Education's ("ED") approval of their Ability-to-Benefit ("ATB") assessments by notifying institutions that, after a three-year hiatus,...more

Alert: Seven Steps To Prepare For The New Gainful Employment Rule

The Gainful Employment Rules became effective on July 1, 2015, and you probably already know that your institution has a deadline to report six years' worth of institutional, student and financial data to the Department of...more

CFPB settles action against provider of student financial aid assistance

The CFPB has announced a proposed settlement with Student Financial Aid Services, Inc. (SFAS) to resolve charges that the company engaged in unlawful sales and billing practices in connection with offering fee-based financial...more

Department of Education requests emergency review of Guaranty Agencies’ security over student financial aid information

On July 16, 2015, the Department of Education issued a request through notice to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for emergency clearance so that Federal Student Aid (FSA) can initiate a formal security assessment...more

5 Ways to Pay for College

Here in Arizona it seems that school starts earlier each year. With the new school year right around the corner it is a good time for soon- to – be seniors and current college students to put some time into planning out how...more

Alert: California Approves Pathway for Non-Profit Institutions to Maintain Exemption from State Oversight

Governor Jerry Brown has now signed into law Senate Bill 81, which included language amending the California Private Postsecondary Education Act of 2009 (the "Act") to permit "independent institutions of higher education"...more

Alert: Recent Developments on State Authorization at Department of Education and in California

The US Department of Education ("ED" or "the Department") has decided against an earlier plan to send letters to every institution believed to be out-of-compliance (or rather, located in a state that is considered...more

U.S. Department of Education Proposes New Restrictions on Campus Financial Products

The U.S. Department of Education has issued proposed revisions to its Title IV Higher Education Act (HEA) cash management rules that include significant new restrictions on financial products used to disburse credit balance...more

No ‘Gain’? Know Pain: Coming Federal Regulations Could Mean Less Federal Aid for Colleges and Universities

New federal education regulations take effect this summer that could substantially reduce federal aid to community colleges and for-profit colleges whose students fail to meet certain standards for finding “gainful...more

Special Needs Trusts and Financial Aid: What Should Applicants Do?

Out of all of the stress-inducing steps in the college application process, the financial aid application may be the most confusing and stressful of all, especially when an applicant can't afford to attend college without...more

Department of Education releases new gainful employment regulations

On October 30, the Department of Education published a new set of regulations detailing what it means to be providing an education program that leads to gainful employment in a recognized occupation. This “Gainful Employment...more

Why colleges in bankruptcy should have access to federal financial aid

With the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA) in full swing, the time is ripe for Congress to reconsider current laws prohibiting postsecondary institutions that declare bankruptcy from participating in the...more

Congress and the Higher Education Act: what’s on the table? What’s to come? Our look at the major proposals

Congress is well into the process of passing a reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA), and many members of Congress have introduced bills addressing many aspects of higher education that concern the public....more

Managing the announcement of a Department of Education Program Review

Following the initial release of the well-known and controversial 2010 GAO report concerning alleged abuses in the for-profit sector, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan issued a public letter to Senators Tom Harkin and Mike...more

Cordray Discusses Student Loans at Boulder Summer Conference on Consumer Financial Decision Making

Director Cordray spoke at the Boulder Summer Conference on Consumer Financial Decision Making this week, addressing student loan debt as a “pressing problem and a matter of grave importance to public policy in America.”...more

Revised GBER Reduces Need For Commission Prior Approval of State Aid But Some Conditions Stricter Than Before

The European Commission (Commission) has adopted new rules that exempt public support given to companies by EU Member States, including regional and local authorities, from the requirement of prior notification to, and...more

CFPB promotes online student financial aid resources

In a new blog post, the CFPB promotes its online financial aid resources to students who are now in the process of choosing which school to attend this fall. The blog post directs students to a just-launched “crisp new...more

Thanks, Grandma and Grandpa! 3 estate-planning-friendly strategies to pay for a grandchild’s college education

It’s no secret that the cost of a college education continues to soar. But this article offers three options to help one’s grandchildren deal with this burden while saving gift and estate taxes: direct tuition payments to the...more

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