Financial Aid FAQ

FAFSA Frequently Asked Questions

No. If you have another way of paying for classes, you are not required to file a FAFSA.  However, filing a FAFSA is recommended. You may find out that you are eligible for free money!

Yes and No. The Department of Education will send your FAFSA to all the schools that you specify.However, individual financial aid packages do not transfer between schools as each school has different sources of funding.

If you are wanting to transfer schools, you will need to add the new school’s code to your FAFSA. The new school will then process you and award you once they receive a copy of your FAFSA.

Note: A student cannot receive financial aid from two different schools at the same time.

The school code for LSCPA is 016666.

If you are under age 24, you are considered a dependent student by Federal definition. You are still considered to be dependent even if living on your own unless you meet the criteria set forth by the federal government for independent students. However, if you have unusual circumstances you should contact the Lamar State College Port Arthur Financial Aid Office for more information at

Your FAFSA will be first processed by the Department of Education. You will receive an email from the Department of Education stating your FAFSA has been processed. Once your FAFSA has been download into our system, you will received an email from our financial aid office to your school email stating we have received your FAFSA. Included in the email will be steps you need to follow to see what other items are required from you to finish your financial aid process.

If you have submitted your FAFSA more than two weeks ago and have not received an email from the financial aid office, please schedule an appointment to speak with a financial aid staff member.

It can take 3 to 5 business days before Lamar State College receives your FAFSA.  Keep an eye on your My.LamarPA account. When you are able to view your requirements for the aid year we have loaded in your FAFSA.

  • Failing to sign your FAFSA using your FSA ID (a username and password) or not submitting your signature page.
  • Failing to have your parent sign your FAFSA using his/her FSA ID or not submitting the signature page.
  • Failing to provide parent’s income information.
  • Submitting incorrect income/tax information.
  • Entering your or your parent's Birthdate or Social Security Number incorrectly.
  • Entering parents' income information under the student's section.
  • Entering the student's income information under the parents' section.
  • Females skip the question "Are you male?"  Skipping this question results in a Selective Service flag that must be resolved.

  • Apply early! The best time to apply for Federal Aid is February through April. Waiting any longer will delay the processing of your aid. 60 days before the first day of class is considered a late application for financial aid
  • Complete your application accurately and completely. Incomplete applications or applications that need to be corrected slow down the processing of your aid. Review your Student Aid Report (SAR) when you receive it.
  • Use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on your FAFSA if able.This will eliminate the time it takes to request a copy form the IRS and reduce processing time of your financial aid.
  • Be sure all forms are complete before you submit them
  • Order your IRS Tax Return Transcript and keep copies of any other benefits or income received and be prepared to provide copies to the Financial Aid Office if requested.
  • Ask questions! If you cannot find the information you need in printed policies or publications, please ask the Financial Aid staff. Asking friends or making assumptions could jeopardize your future eligibility for Federal Aid.

Financial Aid Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, you can attend class if your financial aid has not been processed yet. You have the option of doing a Short Term Loan that covers 50% of your tuition, which will also keep you from being dropped from your classes. Another option is to get on the Installment Plan at the Business Office or you can pay 50% out of pocket until your financial aid has been processed.

Taking out a short term loan does not guarantee that you are eligible for Financial Aid.

If a currently enrolled student signs up for a mini after Census (12th class day of the current long semester it is attached to), Financial Aid will not pay the mini class(es).

Please note this does not apply to new students.

If you are wanting to receive a Direct Student Loan you do need to complete a Master Promissory note and Entrance Counseling. This is done on  Log in using your FSA ID and Password.

You usually only need to complete these once.If you feel that you have already completed either a Master Promissory Note or Entrance Counseling you can check the My Documents section of

If needed, you can select "Notify Another School" to have a copy of your counseling sent to Lamar State College Port Arthur.

Beginning 2024-2025 year, you will be placed in an off campus housing status.  If your status is living with parents, please fill out the Change of Housing Notification form and submit to our office.

  • For MOST students, loan disbursement happens 7 days before school begins.
  • Freshmen First Time Loan Borrowers must wait 30 days from the start of the semester before loans may disburse.
  • Entrance Counseling and a Master Promissory note must be completed and sent to the Financial Aid Office by the DOE before any student loans may disburse.

Per federal regulation LSCPA is required to prorate a dependent or independent undergraduate student's annual Direct Loan limits, when they are enrolled in one semester and will graduate in the same academic year. This will mostly affect students that will graduate from their program of study at the end of the fall term. Once notified of graduation, LSCPA will prorate the loans. This may cause a balance for the student so it if very important that you notify the Office of Financial Aid of pending graduation.

It can take anywhere from 2 days to 2 weeks depending on your situation.

Situations that can slow down this process include:

  • Finding an error on your form. Make sure that all forms are filled out correctly and completely.
  • Finding an error on your FAFSA. This will require us to make a correction to your FAFSA.  It can take up to a week for a correction to come back.  
  • Waiting until the last minute to turn in documents. During peak times (August and January) a review of your documents can take longer due to the large volume of documents coming into the Financial Aid office.

A disbursement is the process in which your aid is released to the school to pay towards your tuition and fees.

A refund is the process in which any remaining funds not used for your tuition and other authorized expenses you owe are paid to you. Refunds will be released to the refund method that you have selected. Refunds are processed by the Business Office once a week.

This means that you have a credit balance with the College and have a refund Pending.

As mandated by the Texas State University System, in an effort to reduce costs and increase efficiency, the use of manual/paper checks has been discontinued.

Paper checks will no longer be used to return funds to students eligible for a refund. Students will be required to receive credit balance refunds and financial aid refunds electronically via Direct Deposit to an established personal checking or Savings account. Students will be required to establish an account and/or provide banking information to LSCPA in order to satisfy direct deposit requirements.

If the E-Refund is returned from the students banking institution for Account Closed, Unable to Locate, Invalid Account Number, etc., there will be a $25 charge deducted from the refund each time the refund is returned.

Note: Only after all outstanding balances have been paid, will any resulting credit balance be transmitted to a Direct Deposit Checking Account. Direct Deposit transactions may take 3 business days after transmission. Students must contact LSCPA Cashiering or their banking institution to resolve problems associated with this process.

In order to set up your Direct Deposit, a student must have a personal bank account in his/her name. The student will need the number and the routing number from the bank.

Steps to set up your Direct Deposit:

  1. Log in to your MyLSCPA account
  2. Click the “My Services” tab
  3. Click the “Student” tab
  4. Select the “Student Payment Center” link
  5. Select the “e-Refunds” link
  6. Follow the on-screen instructions to set up your direct deposit

Contact the Business Office at 409-984-6126 with any questions regarding setting up direct deposit. If you are unable to log in to your MyLamarPA account or have issues accessing any links within your account, contact IT Services for further assistance at 409-984-6150.

You don't have to be a straight A student, but in order to continue receiving federal student aid, you have to make good enough grades, and complete enough classes (credits, hours, etc.), to keep moving toward successfully completing your degree or certificate in a time period that's acceptable.

infoLearn more about Satisfactory Academic Progress

At LSCPA, the student MUST maintain SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS in the course of study being pursued as described below:

  • Quantitative Standard - Complete at least 70% of attempted courses. Failing grades, drops, incompletes and withdrawals can result in failure to meet 70% completion rate.
  • Qualitative standard - Students must have at least a 2.0 GPA or better.
  • 150% Max Time Frame - Graduate within 150% of the time frame required to obtain your degree.

infoLearn more about LSCPA's Satisfactory Academic Progress policy

Regular Processing time on an appeal is a week. During peak times, please allow up to two weeks for your appeal to be reviewed. Peak times are any days within the months of January and August. You will be notified via your school email once a decision is made on your appeal.

For minimal review time of your appeal, please follow instructions carefully on the form.

  • Learn how to use your MyLSCPA website account. All your information for financial aid can be found on this page. Instructions are available online or in the financial aid office.
  • Be aware of the costs you will have to attend school, including tuition, fees, books, housing, tools and supplies.
  • Be aware of the college payment deadlines and try to have your financial aid file complete prior to those payment due dates.
  • Do not assume your financial aid will cover all costs.
  • Financial aid will not pay for classes that are not on your degree plan here at LSCPA.
  • Be aware of policies regarding Satisfactory Academic Progress for students on Federal Aid.
  • Be aware of policies regarding disbursement of Federal Aid (Pell Grants & Loans) and budget accordingly for the semester.
  • Please do not "spend" a refund disbursement before you have it! The dates we publish for release of Pell or Loan refund checks are always subject to change. All refunds will be disbursed to the direct deposit account you set up.
  • Keep your address, telephone and e-mail information updated through the Admissions office. This may delay your refund if not current.
  • Learn and always include the student's name and LSCPA ID number on all correspondence.
  • Read and respond immediately to all correspondence pertaining to your financial aid.
  • Check your e-mail every day.  We no longer mail letters for all situations and notifications.
  • Notify Financial Aid of any scholarships/grants received by outside sources.
  • Loan borrowers must notify Financial Aid, lenders, and guarantee agencies of changes in name, address, telephone number or enrollment status.
  • Always get the name of the person you speak to at Lamar-Port Arthur or outside agencies.
  • Ask questions! If you cannot find the information you need in printed policies or publications, please ask the Financial Aid staff. Asking friends or making assumptions could jeopardize your future eligibility for Federal Aid.