Federal Financial Aid Penalties for Drug Law Violations

In general, a student who has been convicted of any offense under any Federal or State law involving the possession or sale of a controlled substance shall not be eligible to receive any grant, loan or work assistance under the Title IV Federal Student Aid Programs during the period beginning on the date of such conviction and ending after a specified period of time depending on the offense.

Suspension of eligibility for drug related offenses:

If convicted of an offense involving the possession of a controlled substance:

  • 1st offense.........Ineligibility period is 1 year
  • 2nd offense........Ineligibility period is 2 years
  • 3rd offense.........Indefinite

If convicted of an offense involving the sale of a controlled substance:

  • 1st offense........Ineligibility period is 2 years
  • 2nd offense.......Indefinite

Regaining Federal Financial Aid Eligibility:

A student whose eligibility has been suspended may resume eligibility before the end of the ineligibility period determined, for one of the reasons below:

The student satisfactorily completes an acceptable drug rehabilitation program. To be considered an acceptable program, the program must be qualified to receive funds from a federal, state or local government or from a federally or state-licensed insurance company; or be administered or recognized by a federal, state or local government agency or court, or a federally or state-licensed hospital, health clinic or medical doctor. The drug rehabilitation program must also include at least two unannounced drug tests.

The conviction is reversed, set aside, or otherwise rendered nugatory.

For additional information or questions pertaining to eligibility, please contact the Federal Student Aid Programs at 1-800-4-FED-AID.