UPDATED Guidance for interruptions of study related to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Update 04/09/2020 - StudentForms has been updated to allow the student to upload their Statement of Educational Purpose. The task instructions have also been updated to reflect the change to allow the student to upload the statement and valid government-issued photo ID. For more information please see the Release Notes provided after the deployment on 04/09/2020.


Original Post

On Friday, April 3 the Department of Education released an electronic announcement that outlines additional guidance about temporary lenience to regulatory and reporting requirements. The EA states:


“Unless otherwise specifically stated in this guidance document, the emergency flexibilities set forth below remain effective until and through June 30, 2020, unless the payment period crossover extends over award years and is attached to the 2019-2020 award year. In that case the effective date is through the end of the crossover payment period.”


In this announcement there were two items that impacted the Federal verification process. CampusLogic is in the process of reviewing these requirements and determining what if any changes will be made to the StudentForms application. A summary of these two items are below.


Statement of Educational Purpose/Identity V4 & V5


Federal Guidance:


For those borrowers in verification groups V4 or V5, the flexibilities listed below apply if the institution is unable to receive the required documents in person or by mail (e.g., qualified staff are not on campus to complete this task or students are not able to mail documents). These flexibilities also apply if the applicant or student is unable to provide the required documents in person or cannot provide notarized documents by mail.


We suspend the in-person submission and notary requirements for V4 and V5 verification. The institution may allow an applicant or student to submit copies of the required verification documents electronically to the institution. This may occur by uploading a photo of the documents (including from a smartphone), PDF, or other similar electronic document through a secure school portal, by email, etc.


We also recognize that forms of identification (such as a driver’s license) may expire with no real and reasonable opportunity for renewal due to social distancing requirements. Institutions may accept a copy of an expired document if it expired after March 1, 2020.


Response:


CampusLogic is evaluating the tasks associated with the V4 & V5 tracking groups to determine what adjustments can be made to allow a student to upload his/her documentation. If you need to take action immediately for a student, the below work around is currently available in the StudentForms application.


At this point in time, the Statement of Educational Purpose can be downloaded by the student and completed. If an institution chose to add the Financial Aid document 1 or Financial Aid Miscellaneous document to an impacted student, the student could download the Statement of Educational Purpose to complete it and upload it into the appropriate information request added by the school. The institution could provide instructions to the student about this within the additional information request. The institution would then need to waive the Statement of Educational Purpose task and the file could be submitted for review.


Parent Signature


Federal Guidance:


The Department waives the requirements under § 668.57(b) and (c) that a dependent student submits a statement signed by one of the student’s parents when no responsible parent can provide the required signature. In such a situation, the institution must note and retain an explanation of why neither of the student’s parents was available to provide such a statement.


Response:


In the rare instance that a parent is not available to sign documentation for a dependent student under § 668.57(b) and (c) (verification of household size and number in college), the following steps should be taken:


  • The institution should add a signed statement to the students verification transaction with instructions for the student to explain why neither of the student's parents are available to provide such a statement
  • The institution should instruct the student to opt out of e-signature on the verification worksheet.
  • The student should wet sign the form and upload it into StudentForms
  • During the review process, the institution is responsible for ensuring that all signatures are present on the form or that documentation is adequate to waive a parent signature requirement.


CampusLogic continues to monitor evolving and new guidance from the Department and is working diligently to provide necessary adjustments as quickly and effectively as possible. Additional information and updates will be made available through normal channels to include the known Issues forum in the support portal and through your Customer Success Manager.



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