Federal Student Aid Funds
The ever-changing standards for eligibility for Title IV student aid funds require continuous tracking of regulatory rulemakings. Your institution needs an experienced attorney who remains up to date with the most recent version of regulations. The Gallegos Legal Group has the depth of experience you require to confidently make the decisions your institution needs to grow and plan for the future. Our firm can provide sound legal guidance on the gainful employment metrics, cohort default rate challenges, incentive compensation, 90/10 compliance, and drafting compliant student refund policies.
Our firm can guide your institution in compliance with these evolving laws. Gallegos Legal Group has the kind of knowledge and skill required to help you navigate the complexities of Title IV of the Higher Education Act.
If your college or university needs federal financial aid regulatory guidance, we can provide detailed solutions. Our comprehensive approach addresses all compliance and eligibility issues related to student aid funding. Even if you have in-house legal counsel, our background can assist with specific policies and procedures that are targeted to ensure that your institution is in full compliance.
The following are just a few examples of how we can help your institution obtain and maintain eligibility to participate in the programs authorized by Title IV of the Higher Education Act.
Gainful Employment Regulations
Gainful employment regulation compliance is critical to maintaining eligibility to offer your students federal student aid. Institutions of higher education and any postsecondary institution offering non-degree programs must meet specific and complex debt to earnings metrics to ensure your graduates are not burdened with excessive debt. Our firm can advise you on projecting your gainful employment rates, advise you on compliance, and guide you if you need to challenge your draft rates.
State Authorization for Title IV Eligibility
When your college or university has locations in other states, the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) requires that you establish authorization in every state that you have a physical location to maintain Title IV program funding. State licensing laws are in constant flux, and it is essential to understand the exact requirements that will apply to your college or university in your specific state.
Federal State Authorization requirements include student complaint processes as well as licenses and accreditation. These regulations can be confusing as they have been subject to multiple interpretations.
If your institution offers distance education to students in states where it has no physical location, you will need to consider each state’s individual thresholds for seeking state authorization. The Gallegos Legal Group can help you identify the “triggers” that will subject your institution to these state laws.
Very soon, USDE will be issuing more regulations applying specifically to distance education programs. We can help you understand how these regulations affect your institution so that you can carry out what could be a complex and burdensome undertaking.
Initial Title IV Application
If you are a newly formed college or university seeking to participate in the federal student aid programs for the first, time the Gallegos Legal Group can help you through this tedious process. We can assist your institution with obtaining the prerequisite accreditation and state authorization as well as understanding the required financial responsibility ratios and other institutional and programmatic essentials.
USDE has different demands under Title IV depending on your corporate structure for tax purposes. The Gallegos Legal Group can explain these critically important distinctions and how they apply to your institution. Our firm can also explain matters such as: 1) how your institution’s ownership structure could impair your ability to participate in the Title IV programs if they include individuals who may have owned or had control over another institution with a liability to USDE; 2) how your compensation packages may block Title IV eligibility; 3) what data your institution must track and how it must disclose that data to the public; and much more.