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Do drug convictions impact financial aid eligibility?

On Behalf of | Jul 17, 2023 | Criminal Defense |

When your child leaves home to attend school in Virginia or another part of the United States, you may count on him or her to act in a responsible manner. However, many college students “spread their wings” when they get that first taste of freedom, and in some cases, this involves experimentation with drugs and alcohol. Your child must exercise care during the college years, though, because drug infractions have the potential to cause certain problems with regard to your student’s college career.

According to Bankrate, until recently, any drug conviction received by a college student had the capacity to make that student ineligible for federal financial aid for a set period.

How drug convictions currently impact financial aid

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid Simplification Act, which passed in 2021, changed the reporting requirements for college students with drug convictions. Prior to its passage, students had an obligation to report any drug infractions received while also receiving financial aid, and in doing so, they placed their future financial aid at risk. Now, they do not have to report such infractions, and even if they do, those infractions should no longer impact financial aid eligibility.

How drug convictions impact other aspects of higher education

Even though drug offenses no longer affect financial aid, they could still mean big trouble for your student. Many schools have codes of conduct that prohibit the use of drugs and penalize those caught using, possessing or selling them. Depending on the specific rules in place at your child’s school, a drug conviction could lead to serious sanctions and even possible expulsion.

While your child’s college may penalize him or her for using, possessing or selling drugs, he or she may also face repercussions from the criminal justice system.


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