Fiscal Affairs

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Frequently Asked Questions

General

  1. What is the function of the Bursar's Office?
  2. What does "Bursar" mean? 
  3. What exactly do the local fees cover?
  4. Why do I have a financial hold on my account?
  5. How long does it take to clear a financial hold?
  6. I registered for classes but I never attended.  Why do I have to pay?
  7. How can I access my account and find out what I owe?
  8. Can my parents call with questions about my account?
  9. Do I have to pay fees if I do not drop on or after the 1st day of instruction even if I never attended the courses?
  10. What are some of campus non-refundable fees?

 

Fee Payment

  1. When are tuition and mandatory fees due?
  2. What if my payment is late?
  3. How do I make a payment?
  4. Can I mail my payment?
  5. I am paying with an international credit card on the web or phone system, and I have enough funds to cover the charge, why is it being declined?
  6. Are there other payment options available?
  7. Will I receive an invoice or billing statement if I am on the installment payment plan?
  8. My student center shows no fees due, how am I supposed to pay?
  9. What happens if my payment is dishonored?
  10. How can I pay my fees if my payment (check or echeck) has been dishonored?

 

Financial Aid

  1. What is the fastest and safest way to get my financial aid or registration fee refund?
  2. How do I enroll in Direct Deposit?
  3. What if my financial aid does not cover all my tuition and fees?

 

Refunds

  1. Do I get all my money back if I drop before the 1st day of school?
  2. Will I receive a refund if I drop my classes on or after the start of the semester?
  3. Will I receive a refund if I drop my classes after the drop period?
  4. If my parent or someone else paid my tuition and fees, can a refund be issued in his/her name?
  5. How long does the refund process take? When should I expect my refund check?

 

General

What is the function of the Bursar's Office?

The Bursar’s Office provides financial services to all members of the campus community including, but not limited to, students and their relatives, faculty, staff, and University departments. These services enable the campus community to more effectively pursue their mission of teaching, learning, research, and outreach.

 

 

What does "Bursar" mean? 

This is one of the most frequent questions we hear. Here is one definition of the word, “Bursar.”

 

Bursar
Pronunciation: ‘bər-sər, -sär’
Function: noun
Etymology: Medieval Latin bursarius, from bursa
Meaning: an officer (as of a monastery or college) in charge of funds; Treasurer
Taken from Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary

 

 

What exactly do the local fees cover?

Below is a breakdown of the mandatory local fees:

For current fee schedule, visit the Schedule of Tuition and Fees for the corresponding semester

Student Body Center Fee - Established in 1969 to construct, maintain, and operate the Cesar Chavez Student Center (Student Union).
Recreation and Wellness Center Fee – The recreation wellness center fund will be used to construct, maintain and operate a facility where students can come together to focus on health, exercise and wellness
Student Body Association Fee - Established in 1933 for use by the Associated Students Body.
Student Health Service Fee - Established in 1992 to cover services provided at the Student Health Center.
Instructionally Related Activities Fee - Established in 1978 to support intercollegiate arts performances, media programs, etc.
Instructionally Related Activities Athletics Fee - Maintains athletics programs.
Health Facilities Fee - Maintains access to the Student Health Center facility.
Identification Card Fee - Established in 1974, the picture ID card provides access to campus services. 

 

 

Why do I have a financial hold on my account?

A student financial services hold will remain on your student account and you will be unable to obtain services (including but not limited to registration) from the University until all past due balances are paid in full.

 

 

How long does it take to clear a financial hold?

Student financial hold (negative indicator) are cleared within 24 hours.

 

 

I registered for classes but I never attended.  Why do I have to pay?

When you register for a class, you are responsible for payment of the charges on that class, whether or not you attend.  To have all charges removed, you must drop the class(es) prior to the first day of semester/session.

Important Notice: If you do not intend to attend the current term, you MUST drop all classes before the first day of instruction. If you drop all your classes once instruction begins, you will owe pro-rata fees based on the date of withdrawal. This also applies to students with financial aid fee deferments at the time of registration who later do not qualify for aid or decline aid.

 

 

How can I access my account and find out what I owe?

Access your account information by logging into SF State Gateway:

  • Under the finances tab, select "account inquiry."
    Note:  If the amount of your pending financial aid is less than your "due now" or “future amount due,” you are required to pay the difference between your fees (due now/future amount) and the amount of your pending financial aid.  This amount must be paid no later than the published drop deadline to avoid an administrative fee of $20.
  • Please refer to the current Tuition and Fee Schedule on our website to get an estimate of the applicable tuition and fees.

 

 

Can my parents call with questions about my account?

Per federal privacy regulations, parents (or anyone else) are not allowed to receive specific information about a student’s bill, unless the student has granted access to the information by completing and submitting an Authorization to Release Information Form located on the campus website: http://www.sfsu.edu/~admisrec/forms/regforms/recordsrelease.pdf

 

 

Do I have to pay fees if I do not drop on or after the 1st day of instruction even if I never attended the courses?

Prospective students who register for courses offered by the University are obligated for the payment of fees associated with registration of those courses.  Failure to cancel registration in any course for an academic term prior to the first day of the academic term gives rise to an obligation to pay student fees including any registration fees for the reservation of space in the class.

 

 

What are some of campus non-refundable fees?

  • Application Fee
  • Credential Application
  • Orientation Fee
  • Orientation Guest Fee
  • Fee Late Registration Fee
  • Administrative Fee
  • Dishonored Check Fee
  • Installment Service Fee
  • Course Fees if associated course is not dropped before the 1st day of the academic term

 

Fee Payment

When are tuition and mandatory fees due?

You must pay your registration fees by the applicable published payment due date. A $20 administrative fee and $25 late registration must be paid by students who register on or after the start of the semester/session. Failure to pay by the published due date will result in late fees and/or disenrollment from all classes.

 

What if my payment is late?

If payment is not posted on your account on time, the consequences include the possibility of being dropped from all of your classes, a late fee of $25 and an administrative fee of $20, and a hold on your student account preventing enrollment and/or receiving other campus services.

 

How do I make a payment?

  • Payments may be made online by electronic check (NO fee) or credit card (MasterCard, VISA, American Express and Discover) through SF State Gateway. Credit cards are accepted with a 2.75% un-refundable service fee retained by our third-party credit card service provider.
  • You may pay by cash or check, in person at either the Main campus, ADM 155 or at Satellite Cashier (Student Services Building) windows.
  • Checks may be mailed: Bursar’s Office, ADM 155, 1600 Holloway Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94132

 

Can I mail my payment?

Yes, but to avoid late fees and/or disenrollment, payment must be received by the Bursar/Cashier’s Office (ADM 155, 1600 Holloway Avenue, San Francisco 94132) by the published due date/time. Postmark dates are not honored.

 

I am paying with an international credit card on the web or phone system, and I have enough funds to cover the charge, why is it being declined?

Most credit cards have a limit on how much can be charged per day. If you are trying to pay more than this daily limit, contact your credit card issuer, and ask for an increase on the daily limit.

 

Are there other payment options available?

The CSU offers a deferred installment payment plan to assist non-financial aid students. The CA Resident Installment Agreement is available to all non-financial aid students and will defer two-thirds of the tuition for all eligible students who apply. The plan has a $33 non-refundable deferral fee. The second and third installment payments can be paid earlier than the due date, but each payment must be received on the due dates otherwise, an additional administrative late fee of $20 will be assessed. For non-resident tuition installment plan, visit www.sfsu.edu/~bursar.

 

Will I receive an invoice or billing statement if I am on the installment payment plan?

The Bursar/Cashier’s Office will not bill you. You must retain a copy of your signed contract to know when payments are due and you should be checking your account by logging into SF State Gateway.

 

My student center shows no fees due, how am I supposed to pay?

If you are not enrolled in classes, your student center will show the following:

Student Center message prompt: You have no outstanding charges at this time.

You can still pay by navigating to the Student Center. In the center of the page in the “Finances” section, click the "make a payment" button in your Student Center. Once in CASHNet, select the second "payment on account" button and manually enter the amount you need to pay based on the fee schedule (fee schedules can be found on the Schedule of Tuition and Fees page for the corresponding semester).

 

What happens if my payment is dishonored?

For each dishonored payment (check, e-check or credit card), a $20 dishonored check fee will be assessed to your account. A dishonored check or credit card is the same as no payment in terms of completing your registration.

 

How can I pay my fees if my payment (check or echeck) has been dishonored?

You must pay by cash, money order, or credit card if your payment was dishonored.

 

Financial Aid

What is the fastest and safest way to get my financial aid or registration fee refund?

The University is disbursing financial aid and/or scholarship balance payments to students through electronic file transfer (EFT). Electronic file transfer, more commonly known as direct deposit, is consistent with the CSU policy of adapting a safe, efficient, and cost-effective method of payment. In addition to SF State University's commitment to and support of environmental initiatives, direct deposit is greatly beneficial for students because it is faster and more secure than the paper check process.

Direct Deposit refunds are processed at least weekly, with credit to your bank account within two business days. If you have not enrolled in Direct Deposit, a check will be printed and mailed to the mailing address on your student account. Refund checks will be processed every other week.

 

How do I enroll in Direct Deposit?

Direct Deposit sign up is fast and easy. Log into the SF State Gateway

In the center of the “Student Services Ctr” (under "Finances" section), click on "Enroll in Direct Deposit"

 

What if my financial aid does not cover all my tuition and fees?

If a student has anticipated aid on his/her account, the tuition and fees payment are deferred. If the anticipated aid does not cover the entire balance, the student is responsible for paying the remaining amount by the published due date according to when he/she registered. A late administrative fee of $20 will be assessed.

 

Refunds

Do I get all my money back if I drop before the 1st day of school?

Yes, however, a refund processing fee of $20 will be deducted from the refund amount.

 

Will I receive a refund if I drop on or after the start of the semester?

Classes dropped on or after the first day of the semester are subject to a pro-rated refund up to the 60% point in the semester (less a $20 refund processing fee) if you official withdraw and notify the Registrar’s Office, and submit a completed Refund Request Form to the Bursar’s Office. Fees will NOT be reversed or waived for courses dropped after that date except for students who are unable to continue a course because of a university error or campus initiated course cancellation, or compulsory military service.

 

Will I receive a refund if I drop my classes after the drop period?

A student who fails to drop classes prior to the end of the campus drop period, or fails to officially withdraw from the campus, shall not be entitled to any refund of registration fees or mandatory fees.

 

If my parent or someone else paid my tuition and fees, can a refund be issued in his/her name?

No, a refund can only be issued in the name of the student whose account reflects the credit, regardless of who paid the fees.

 

How long does the refund process take?When should I expect my refund check?

You should expect a check within two to three weeks after submitting the Refund Request Form to the Bursar's Office. (See Refund Guidelines for more specific refund information). Otherwise, for unofficial withdrawals and/or cancellation of classes, refund checks will not be processed until after the 60 percent of the attendance period, unless the Refund Request form is submitted to the Bursar’s Office.

SF State Home

Bursar's Office - San Francisco State University

1600 Holloway Ave - Adm 155, San Francisco, CA 94132-4161

Phone: 1.415.338.1281 - Fax: 1.415.338.7787 - Email: bursar@sfsu.edu