Lifetime Eligibility Used

Pell Grant Lifetime Eligibility Used
We want to alert you to a recent change in the law that affects Pell Grant awards starting with the 2012-2013 award year and beyond.  This change limits the total number of years a student may receive a Pell Grant to the equivalent of six years.  Since the maximum amount of Pell Grant funding a student can receive each year is equal to 100%, the six year equivalent is 600%.
  • How is my Pell Grant Lifetime Eligibility Used calculated? 
    • Scheduled Award:
      • The maximum amount of Pell Grant funding you can receive is calculated for an "award year." 
      • An award year is a period from July 1 of one calendar year to June 30 of the next calendar year. 
      • Your "scheduled award" is partially determined by using your expected family contribution (EFC) that is calculated from the information you (and your family) provided when you filed your FAFSA. 
      • Your scheduled award is the maximum amount you would be able to receive for the award year if you were enrolled full-time for the full school year. 
      • Your scheduled award represents 100% of your Pell Grant eligibility for that award year.
    • Percent Used:   
      • To determine how much of the maximum six years (600%) of Pell Grant you have used each year, the Department of Education compares the actual amount you received for the award year with your scheduled award amount for that award year.
      • Of course, if you receive the full amount of your scheduled award, you will have used 100%.
      • Some students do not receive their entire scheduled award for an award year.
      • There are a number of reasons for this, the most common of which are that the student was not enrolled for the full year or that the student was not enrolled full-time, or both.
      • If you did not receive the full amount of your scheduled award, we calculate the percentage of the scheduled award that you did receive.
      • For example, if your scheduled award for an award year is $5,000, but because you were enrolled for only one semester you received only $2,500, you would have received 50% of the scheduled award for that award year.
      • Or if you received only $3,750 for the award year because you were enrolled three-quarter-time and not full-time, you would have received 75% for that year.
    • Lifetime Eligibility Used (LEU):
      • The Department of Education keeps track of your LEU by adding together the percentages of your Pell Grant scheduled awards that you received for each award year. 
      • The table below shows examples of the LEUs of three students who received differing amounts of their scheduled awards over a four year period

Pell Lifetime Table

  • Note:
    • From 2009-10 through 2010-11, it was possible for a student to receive up to two scheduled awards in a year.
    • So some students will have a "percent used" of up to 200% for one or more of those years.
    • Of course, if a student's LEU equals or exceeds 600%, the student may no longer receive Pell Grant funding.
    • Similarly, a student whose LEU is greater than 500% but less than 600%, while eligible for a Pell Grant for the next award year, will not be able to receive a full scheduled award.
  • How can I see my Lifetime Eligibility Used (LEU) percentage?