Drug Law Violations and Consequences

A federal or state drug conviction for possession, sale, or conspiring to sell illegal drugs can affect your eligibility to receive federal student financial aid (including loans, grants, and work study).

If the offense occurs while you are receiving federal student financial aid, you will lose eligibility for federal student aid for a certain time period, depending on the conviction and whether you have previous convictions.

Conviction for Possession of Illegal Drugs

For possession of illegal drugs, you are not eligible for financial aid:

  • for one year from the date of conviction for a first offense
  • for two years from the date of conviction for a second offense
  • for an indefinite period if convicted of two or more offenses

Conviction for Sale of Illegal Drugs

For sale of illegal drugs, you are not eligible for financial aid:

  • for two years from the date of conviction for a first offense
  • for an indefinite period if convicted of two or more offenses.

Conviction for Possession and Sale of Illegal Drugs

If convicted of both possessing and selling drugs, you will be ineligible for the longer of the time periods previously indicated.

Convictions That Do Not Count

Unless tried as an adult, convictions received while a juvenile are not considered, nor are convictions that are reversed, set aside, or removed from your record.

How to Regain Eligibility

You may regain eligibility for federal student financial aid after the period of ineligibility ends or when you have completed a qualified drug rehabilitation program.