SUBJECT: STUDENT ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE – BILLING, COLLECTION AND WRITE-OFF PROCEDURES

Issue 5
Effective 07/01/2020

GENERAL:

The purpose of this letter is to set forth guidelines for the billing, collection and write off of student accounts within the University of Maine System. Sanctions outlined in this APL are not to be applied to any student who, when the charges were incurred, was under the age of 16. Sanctions are based on a singular campus balance, but should be applied and honored throughout the UMS.

GUIDELINES:

BILLING:

DUE DATE:

All University of Maine System (UMS) campuses will use the same due dates for semester charges.

Fall semester: Enrollment in payment plan, third party authorization or payment of balance due on August 15th.
Spring semester: Enrollment in payment plan, third party authorization or payment of balance due on January 15th.
Summer semester: Enrollment in payment plan, third party authorization or payment of balance due on May 15th.

PAYMENT PLANS:

All UMS campuses will offer a 5 payment plan for the Fall and Spring academic semesters. Other payment plans will be offered as needed on specific campuses.

Summer payment plans will be offered in the form of 3 payments.

LATE FEES:

Late Fees will be posted by term, based on that terms charges. Accounts with a past due balance for the term will be assessed the Late Fee if their past due amount equals $250.00 or more.

Late fees will be posted to student accounts within 30 days after the term due date. And each month thereafter on or around the 15th if charges remain due.

Late fees will be on a tiered structure much like tuition.

$50.00 on a monthly basis up to $200.00 maximum for the term on the higher tier campuses (UM, UMF, USM).
$25.00 on a monthly basis up to $100.00 maximum for the term on the lower tier campuses (UMA, UMFK, UMM, UMPI)

SERVICE INDICATOR PLACEMENT:

With the use of Service Indicators the following Administrative Sanctions will be enforced.

Indicators blocking Registration:

Past Due Cross Campus Service Indicators should be posted to block Registration for accounts with a balance $1000.00 or more.

Placement and removal of Indicators should be completed on a minimum schedule of weekly.

Indicators should be applied after Add/Drop and prior to the start of the next registration period.

Indicators blocking Official Transcripts and Diplomas:

Past Due Cross Campus Service Indicators  should be posted to block Receipt of an Official Transcript and Receipt of Diploma on accounts past due.

Placement and removal of Indicators should be completed on a minimum schedule of weekly.

Indicators should be applied after Add/Drop and prior to the start of the next registration period.

COLLECTION OF PAST DUE ACCOUNTS:

The University of Maine System or its universities may use in-house collection efforts, commercial collection firms, legal services, and the State of Maine Bureau of Taxation for collection of past due balances.

IN-HOUSE COLLECTION EFFORTS:

In-House collection efforts should be made on all past due account balances that have not been referred to an outside collection agency.  These would include currently enrolled students who have past due charges. These efforts may include email notices, paper notices, phone calls or other manners of communication.

COLLECTION AGENCIES:

Balances over $100.00 that are past due 180 days or more should be referred to a collection agency.

At the discretion of the University, accounts with balances below $100 should be either written off, coded as uncollectible or forwarded to a collection agency.

Accounts placed with a collection agency whose past due amounts have not been paid in full or reduced substantially within one year should be recalled from that agency. Those accounts should be sent to a second collection agency.

If the second collection agency fails to collect the balance within one year and the amount due is equal to or greater than $500, at the discretion of the University the account may be litigated.

The University of Maine System or its universities may disclose (directly or through its collection agencies) to a credit bureau organization that the student has failed to pay an assessed charge.

MAINE STATE TAX OFFSET:

During the month of November, prepare data for December submission to the State of Maine Bureau of Taxation’s Income Tax Setoff program. This would apply to accounts with a past due dollar balance of $25.00 or more.

WRITE OFF/UNCOLLECTABLE BALANCES:

All accounts 2 years or more past due with no payment received and no future payment arrangements should either have a Service Indicator of Uncollectible applied or be written off to Doubtful Accounts with a Write Off Service Indicator applied.

If payments are received for accounts previously written off the write off should be reversed and the payment posted to the account.

For those with a Service Indicator of Uncollectible the payment should be posted to the account.

BANKRUPTCY:

In the event a debtor files for bankruptcy, all collection efforts and sanctions should immediately stop on all accounts within the UMS system.

The university that receives the bankruptcy notification must notify the remaining universities of the filing. A cross campus Service Indicator will be applied indicating the student has filed for bankruptcy. The indicator will have a start date equal to the filing date of the bankruptcy and will contain information in the comments section as to who received the notification and posted the indicator.

Each university is responsible to monitor indicators that have been applied and determine if the student owes their campus.

If a prior debt to a university has been discharged through bankruptcy, the amount owed should be written-off and the student is eligible to enroll at any UMS campus without sanctions.

RESERVE FOR DOUBTFUL ACCOUNTS:

Each university is responsible for keeping the Reserve of Doubtful Accounts funded at an appropriate level.

The Reserve for Doubtful Accounts should be funded at a level equal to:

25% of account balances 181 – 365 days old and

85% of account balances 365 days old and over.

A report calculating this reserve requirement is furnished to the Chief Business Officers each month from the Office of Finance and Treasurer.

APPROVED BY THE CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER AND TREASURER ON 7/1/2020

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