Loss of federal financial aid due to conviction of possession or sale of drugs

A federal or state drug conviction can disqualify you for federal and state funds. You must self-certify on your FAFSA that you have been convicted while receiving federal or state aid. If you were convicted while receiving federal/state aid, you will be ineligible for future years based on the chart below. The information below will assist you in answering the questions on the FAFSA correctly and how you may regain eligibility if convicted while receiving federal aid.

Convictions only count if they were for an offense that occurred during a period of enrollment for which the student was receiving Title IV aid - they do not count if the offense was not during such a period. Also, a conviction that was reversed, set aside, or removed from the studentís record does not count, nor does one received when he/she was a juvenile, unless he/she was tried as an adult.

The chart below illustrates the period of ineligibility for FSA funds, depending on whether the conviction was for sale or possession and whether the student had previous offenses. (A conviction for sale of drugs includes convictions for conspiring to sell drugs.)

Possession of illegal drugs Sale of illegal drugs
1st offense 1 year from date of conviction 2 years from date of conviction
2nd offense 2 years from date of conviction Indefinite period
3+ offenses Indefinite period

A student regains eligibility the day after the period of ineligibility ends or when he successfully completes a qualified drug rehabilitation program. Further drug convictions will make him ineligible again.

Students denied eligibility for an indefinite period can regain it only after successfully completing a rehabilitation program as described below or if a conviction is reversed, set aside, or removed from the studentís record so that fewer than two convictions for sale or three convictions for possession remain on the record. In such cases, the nature and dates of the remaining convictions will determine when the student regains eligibility. It is the studentís responsibility to certify to Chesapeake College that she has successfully completed the rehabilitation program.

Standards for a qualified drug rehabilitation program

A qualified drug rehabilitation program must include at least two unannounced drug tests and must satisfy at least one of the following requirements:

  • Be qualified to receive funds directly or indirectly from a federal, state, or local government program.
  • Be qualified to receive payment directly or indirectly from a federally or state-licensed insurance company.
  • Be administered or recognized by a federal, state, or local government agency or court.
  • Be administered or recognized by a federally or state-licensed hospital, health clinic, or medical doctor.

Students will be notified during our Missing Information Letter correspondences that we cannot continue processing their financial aid file until the drug conviction issue has been resolved.

If there is inaccurate information on this page, please send correction or comments to:  finaid@chesapeake.edu