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Does a drug conviction affect financial aid eligibility?

On Behalf of | Nov 1, 2021 | Drug Possession

It is not unusual for Ohio college students to experiment with drugs once they get their first taste of freedom. However, if authorities catch your child using, possessing or selling drugs, you may have concerns about how it might affect your son or daughter moving forward.

Per Federal Student Aid, an office of the U.S. Department of Education, until recently, any type of drug conviction could make your college student ineligible for financial aid for a year or longer.

Rule changes

Many opponents to the old rule argued that penalizing college students for what are often minor drug infractions is an ineffective means of countering the problem. As a result, the rule no longer applies. However, your child may still see a question about whether he or she has any drug-related criminal infractions when filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The good news is, your child’s truthful answers are no longer going to prevent him or her from obtaining or using financial aid.

Other possible repercussions

While your college student’s drug conviction may not hurt financial aid eligibility, it may lead to other repercussions. Your child may face criminal penalties that make it difficult to continue his or her education, such as time behind bars or steep fines. If the charge leads to a conviction, he or she may also encounter barriers when it comes to finding employment or housing.

Sometimes, your child’s own school may also have policies in place that penalize students who receive drug-related or other criminal convictions. Having a drug offense may, too, create a barrier later if your child plans to apply for graduate school.