November News 2014
Student Financial Services Newsletter
Table of Contents
Spring Payment and Possible Tax Ramifications
Is Spring Aid ready to Disburse?
Possible Additional Funds for Spring!
Online Payment & Holiday Hours
What if I can't pay on time?
Join Our Mailing List
Brief Alerts

ADDRESS AND PHONE NUMBERS - Please make sure your phone number, mailing, billing and home addresses are current in MyGFU.  Also, be sure to always enter apartment #'s and such on the same line as your street address or on the line above it. The USPS will return your mail if you put it below the street line. 


EXPECTING A REFUND CHECK? To be sure recent changes don't cause refund checks for spring to go to an old address, you need to update your address BEFORE January 5th.


TAX SEASON will soon be here. It will again be time to file your FAFSA and 1098T's will be prepared in late January. If you want to receive your 1098T electronically, you can choose this option in MyGFU. If you have not given GFU your SSN (ITIN, Individual Tax Identification Number), you need to return IRS FORM W-9S to Student Accounts ASAP! It's the law!

DID YOU KNOW... that if your anticipated aid changes, when you refresh the pdf of your bill, new aid that has authorized will be reflected? Unfortunately changes to tuition and fees are not refreshed until the next bill but they can still be viewed in mygfu, just not in the bill pdf. 

DID YOU's not too late to sign up for monthly payments in the spring? We also offer monthly payroll deductions for those employed by GFU.


Happy Thanksgiving! We sincerely wish you a blessed time with family and friends as you celebrate and reflect on all that you have to be thankful for! Please know that we are thankful for you. It is an honor to work, serve and be a part of this amazing community, George Fox University.


While we're at it, here are a few brief Student Account and Financial Aid updates specifically for spring semester.


Spring Payment and Possible Tax Ramifications

For registered students, charges for spring have been processed and bills will be mailed December 1st. December 2nd, watch your mailbox or login to mygfu to view charges or to access a downloadable pdf of your bill.


ALERT: Please do not rush to pay your bill before considering whether or not you want to be able to claim a Tax Benefits for Education in 2015. To maximize benefits, we are recommending that you wait and pay between Jan. 1st and your due date. For Traditional Undergraduates payment for tuition is due January 5th. For Grad and ADP students, payment is due prior to each session start. (See due dates in MyGFU.) 


The exception to this are monthly payment plans who have a December payment due. For you, please make your December payments by the 15th. Your remaining payments in 2015 should qualify you for benefits in 2015.


Are You Ready? Payment for Spring Includes Aid Disbursement

Timely payment for spring includes financial aid disbursement to the student account. Our first disbursement is scheduled for January 5th, which is the payment due date. Please take note of the following: 

3 reasons your financial aid disbursement could be delayed:

  1. ALL STUDENTS: Your enrollment confirmation "form" must be completed. It will be available in MyGFU beginning December 8th (see "University Forms" in MyGFU student center).
  2. You must be fully registered. Wait-listed courses do not count toward aid eligibility. Traditional undergraduate students receiving George Fox financial aid must be registered for 12 credits. For disbursement, Grad and ADP students must be registered at least 1/2 time and must have a class that begins within 10 days of disbursement.
  3. You may have financial aid documents to complete (see "To Do" list in MyGFU student center and revisit frequently until aid has disbursed).

Once aid has disbursed, if it overpays the account, excess funds checks are mailed about a week after the credit balance is created. Since we know that many are waiting to be able to pay January rent, we will expedite this process as quickly as possible. (We are very sorry but refund checks are not available in person.) 


Possible Additional Funds for Students Advancing Levels 

Looking for a way to bridge the gap between your financial aid and your balance due? Students who will advanced from freshmen to sophomore, or sophomore to junior, between fall and spring semesters may be eligible to receive an increase to their Federal Stafford loan. If this will be your case, and you are interested in the increase, after fall grades are posted please contact your Financial Aid Counselor right away. The average increase is $1000 but can be more.

Other options? You will find options, including how to pay monthly at this link:  Bridging-the-Gap  


Online Payment and Holiday Office Hours

HELP! The window for making payment in the spring while maximizing tax benefits is very small. This is how it lays out, January 1st and 2nd are GFU Holidays. January 3rd and 4th fall on the weekend and, since the payment due date for most is January 5th, that gives Student Accounts one day, January 5th, to process all your payments in time. If you are wondering if that's even possible, it's not. That is why we need your help! Please expedite your payment and help us process the large volume of payments that need to come in that week by paying online via mygfu. Your payment will post directly from your checking account to your student account without delay! See How to Pay Online for instructions on how to set up guest permissions to our payment portal and for browser tips for success. 


Note: To avoid paying online service fees that are assessed for debit/credit card use, pay online using your checking account routing and account numbers found on the bottom of your checks and deposit slips.


What If I Can't Pay On Time?

Sometimes unexpected things happen and paying for the next term might not be as easy as paying for the last. If that is your situation, or if you are concerned that you are heading that way, Student Accounts needs to hear from you in December. Why December? If you have read this entire newsletter, you know that there won't be much time for creative problem solving in January before the term begins on the 12th. In Student Accounts, we are committed to trying to find a way through a temporary set back but, if you don't tell us about it soon, we may not have the time needed to thoroughly explore all possible options before financial holds and other impacts are felt. When payment is delayed, clearance to attend is required because we don't want you to be saddled with debt to the university that you cannot pay. The best way for us to promote sound financial decision making is for us to talk before debt is incurred. Give us a chance to help when it helps the most!

All of us in Student Financial Services wish you well. We are here to help and hope you will let us know if we can assist you in any way.

To our December Graduates we say, "Good Job and Congratulations!" We are praying for peace and clarity during your transition.


Your George Fox University Student Financial Services Teams 

Financial Aid and Student Accounts