Refund processing

Most financial aid will be disbursed to a student's UAF account 10 days before the start of classes contingent upon certification by Financial Aid of the student maintaining satisfactory academic progress. For more information, visit the UAF Financial Aid website.

All aid received will be applied to any debt owed to the university first. Once all debt has been paid, the Office of the Bursar will refund any remaining balance. During the initial aid release, a high volume of refunds are processed in the order in which the aid has been applied. Remember: Any debt owed to the university will be deducted from your refund.

How can I receive my refund?

Refunds are processed one of three ways: direct deposit, check or credit card refund depending upon the method of original payment (if applicable). No cash refunds are available on amounts over $10, although they may be applied to your PolarExpress card. Please note that once applied, the funds are nonrefundable. For refunds of less than $10, the Office of the Bursar does not issue checks. It is the student's responsibility to check UAOnline and contact the Office of the Bursar to receive the refund as cash or it may be applied to the student's PolarExpress card as a nonrefundable payment. Due to increased volume during fee payment, this may take additional time. Direct deposit refunds for less than $10 are processed as normal.

When can I expect to receive my refund?

To determine if financial aid has been posted and a refund is due, students should check UAOnline for the most up-to-date information. If the "Current Amount Due" shows a negative balance, some or all of the aid has been posted and a refund will be processed. Once the "Current Amount Due" shows a zero balance ($0), the refund has been processed.

We make every effort to process refunds as quickly as possible, striving for 2-3 business days, but during peak times it can take up to two weeks depending on volume. Sign up for direct deposit to receive your refund as quickly as possible.  Once processed, direct deposit refunds can take up to five business days to reach a student’s bank account; printed checks can take up to two weeks.

What if I add or drop a class after my refund has been processed?

If you make any changes to your account once a refund has been processed, you are responsible for paying the remaining balance by the fee payment deadline or holds and late fees may be assessed. See the UAF Registration Guide for more deadline dates.

Policies for specific refund types

Direct deposit 
After the Office of the Bursar processes the refund, it takes up to five business days for the funds to be direct deposited into a student's designated bank account. If the account information is inaccurate and the refund cannot be processed, a check will be sent to the student's mailing address as indicated in UAOnline. It is the student's responsibility to ensure their mailing address is current. To see the account information for direct deposit, log onto UAOnline. The Office of the Bursar does not have access to this information.

**UAF employees: You must enroll in direct deposit for your student account even if you have enrolled in direct deposit for payroll or travel.**

Personal checks 
If tuition and fees were paid with a personal check, the refund will be processed once your check has cleared the bank. This includes electronic check payments made via UAOnline. The waiting period may be reduced by bringing proof to the Office of the Bursar that your check has cleared.

Credit card 
If tuition and fees are paid for the semester by credit card, the credit card will be refunded (up to the amount paid).  Any remaining credit balances will be refunded by check or direct deposit. If your tuition was paid through external sources such as financial aid, federal loans, scholarships or grants, you will receive your refund as a check sent to your mailing address of record or direct deposited in your bank account.

Important information 
All refunds are subject to federal regulations. A refund received due to dropped classes or a total withdrawal may render a student ineligible for scholarships or financial aid. As a result, funds may be returned to the lender or grantor pursuant to all applicable rules and regulations resulting in a balance due to the university. Students are encouraged to contact Financial Aid before dropping or withdrawing from classes to determine the impact of these actions prior. Any aid received through external funding (e.g., Department of Labor, Department of Vocational Rehabilitation) will generally be returned to the original funding source. Students receiving this form of aid should contact their campus representative for more assistance.