[Federal Register: September 17, 1996 (Volume 61, Number 181)]
[Page 49039-49040]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]

Download: PDF Version

[[Page 49039]]


Part V

Department of Education


Federal Title IV Student Assistance; Notice

[[Page 49040]]


Office of Postsecondary Education; Federal Title IV Student 

AGENCY: Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice of the availability of the National Student Loan Data 
System (NSLDS) to be used by postsecondary educational institutions to 
meet the regulatory requirements for obtaining financial aid transcript 
(FAT) information for purposes of determining student eligibility for
Federal Title IV student assistance.


SUMMARY: The Secretary gives notice to institutions of higher education 
that, beginning with the 1996-97 award year, the NSLDS may be used by 
postsecondary educational institutions to meet the regulatory 
requirements of Section 668.19(a)(1) and (a)(2)(i) for obtaining FAT 
information for most Title IV student aid applicants. Institutions were 
informed of this availability and the conditions under which the NSLDS 
may be used for FAT purposes, in a Dear Colleague letter dated July 
1996 (GEN-96-13). Further guidance may be given by the Department in 
subsequent notifications.


    The FAT regulations were developed to make certain that schools had 
all of the information necessary to enforce both student eligibility 
provisions and to be in compliance with program-specific award maximums 
contained in the Higher Education Act (HEA) of 1965, as amended. The 
law and supporting regulations provide that, among other eligibility 
criteria, an applicant for Federal student aid cannot be in default on 
a Title IV student loan or owe an overpayment on Title IV aid. 
Additionally, the Pell Grant and loan programs have annual and/or 
aggregate award maxima that must be considered when awarding Title IV 
aid to a student who transfers into one eligible institution from 
another. The Department has determined that obtaining FAT information 
from the NSLDS will be more efficient and less burdensome for 
institutions of higher education that participate in Title IV programs 
than the existing process of requesting the return of paper FATs from 
the previously attended institution. In addition, the use of the NSLDS 
by institutions provides significant burden reduction to students. The 
use of the NSLDS for the purpose of obtaining FAT information will 
eliminate paper forms and the need for schools and students to handle 
millions of paper FATs each year, significantly reducing delays in 
processing and the change of data error.

General Information

    Using the information from the NSLDS will allow schools to meet the 
regulatory requirements for obtaining FAT information for those Federal 
student aid applicants who have previously attended other eligible 
postsecondary institutions, with the exception of mid-year transfer 
students. Schools may obtain FAT information from the NSLDS through 
several methods, including the Student Aid Report (SAR) and the NSLDS 
History section of the Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR). 
Once a school has obtained historial financial aid information from the 
NSLDS, including the information on a student's SAR or in the ISIR, it 
will not be required to re-check the NSLDS prior to disbursing Title IV 
student assistance. The Question and Answer section of Dear Colleague 
letter GEN-96-13 describes in detail how the NSLDS may be used for FAT 
purposes. Schools are reminded that the requirement that they respond 
to requests for FAT information from other institutions in accordance 
with section 668.19(b), (c), and (d) of the regulations remains in 

Applicable Regulations

    The following regulations are applicable to these programs:

General Provisions--34 CFR part 668.
Federal Family Educational Loan--34 CFR part 682.
Federal Perkins Loan--34 CFR part 674.
Federal Direct Student Loan--34 CFR part 685.
Federal Pell Grant Program--34 CFR part 690.
Federal Work-Study Program--34 CFR part 675.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant Program--34 CFR 
part 676.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Greg Gerrans, Program Specialist, 
Policy Development Division, Policy, Training and Analysis Service, 
Student Financial Assistance Programs, U.S. Department of Education, 
600 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, DC 20202-5447. Telephone 
(202) 708-4607. Individuals who use a telecommunications device for the 
deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-
800-877-8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern standard time, Monday 
through Friday.

    Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1091, 1092b, 1094.

    Dated: September 10, 1996.

(Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbers: Federal 
Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant Program, 84.007; Federal 
Stafford Loan Program, 84.032; Federal PLUS Loan Program, 84.032; 
Federal Work-Study Program, 84.033; Federal Perkins Loan Program, 
84.038; Federal Pell Grant Program, 84.063)
David A. Longanecker,
Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education.
[FR Doc. 96-23801 Filed 9-16-96; 8:45 am]