For many college families, the expense of higher education is one of the largest investments they will make. In fact, according to College Data – the average published in-state tuition, fees, and room and board charges for the 2017-2018 school year was $25,290; with tuition exceeding $50,000 at private institutions.
With so much money at stake, it’s smart for college families to have a back-up plan in case your student needs to withdraw from the university due to illness or injury. Supporting a college student through an unexpected event like this can be stressful and can absolutely be made worse if parents don’t know the university’s refund policy. In most cases, universities don’t offer refunds of tuition costs outside of the first few weeks of classes; that’s why college families should consider tuition insurance.
The Top 5 Reasons Tuition Insurance is a Smart Decision
- If you can’t afford to lose the investment you are making each semester: Tuition Insurance can provide up to a 100% refund of your expenses if a student gets sick, injured, or is forced with leave school for another covered reason. Tuition insurance can cover those costs and help you get back on your feet in the event of a withdrawal, without the added stress of a financial loss.
- If your school does not provide a 100% refund: Do you know what your school’s refund policy is? As mentioned above, most schools don’t offer refunds after the fifth week of the semester. In fact, in a 2015 survey done by HigherEdStudy of college and university bursars and heath administrators, only 23% of schools reported providing 100% refunds. According to the survey, most schools only refund a portion of tuition for qualified withdrawals through the fifth week of classes and virtually no school provides a refund for academic fees.
- Not every student graduates: There are many factors that may disrupt a student’s education. Tuition is not drop-out insurance, but it can help you to avoid the financial loss if your student needs to withdraw from school due to serious illness or injury and decides not to return again.
- If you have more than $2,500 of academic expenses: On the off-chance that the school does provide a 100% refund for tuition, most do not refund academic fees or student housing. Many tuition insurance plans provide coverage for not only tuition but also for expenses related to academic fees and student housing.
- Student health and well-being can force a student to withdraw from classes: The American Health Association National College Health Assessment reports that student health incidents such as illness, accidents, and injuries happen frequently, even to your and healthy college students. It is important to note that ordinary student health problems such as mono, chronic heath conditions, or injuries may also force your student to withdraw from classes and cost them thousands of dollars.
The Investment in College and your Student Deserve Protection
Starting at $33.75 for $2,500 of coverage per term, tuition insurance is an affordable way to protect your investment. A good starting point is GradGuard’s school search tool to see what tuition insurance program may be available to your student.
Remember tuition insurance must be purchased prior to the start of school and, like all insurance plans, be sure to check the specific terms, conditions, and exclusions of your policy.