Will a drug conviction impact my college financial aid?

On Behalf of | Dec 9, 2020 | Drug Charges

Students at Indiana University of Pennsylvania will end their fall semester by Dec. 7, and they may take a long break before the spring semester begins in mid-January. During those weeks, they may be spending time at home, hanging out with old friends and celebrating the end of classes. However, if late-night partying ends with an IUP student facing drug charges, the student and their parents have more than a couple of reasons to be concerned.

One possible consequence of a drug conviction, which students and parents often don’t realize, is that students can have their college financial aid suspended. Current college students can have their aid suspended, as well as potential students who already have filled out their federal financial aid form (FAFSA).

Having financial aid restored

Students with drug convictions can have their college financial aid reinstituted if they:

  • Complete a drug rehabilitation program
  • Pass two unannounced drug tests given by an approved drug rehab program

If you have to serve prison time in a state or federal facility because of a drug conviction, you can’t receive federal student aid while incarcerated. If you are on parole or probation, or living in a halfway house, you may be eligible for federal student aid.

Other consequences of a drug conviction

Having a drug conviction on your record impacts more than your financial aid eligibility. It will become part of your criminal record, impacting your ability to rent an apartment and obtain certain types of employment.

When you are facing a drug charge, you should consult with a criminal law attorney. An attorney can prepare a defense for your drug charges and advocate for less severe punishments. You want to minimize the impact a drug conviction will have on your life and freedom. That’s why seeking qualified legal representation is so important.