Answers to Your Most Common Questions About Early Registration Files
What are early registration files?
An early registration file captures a school’s enrollment for the upcoming term. It provides a snapshot of who is registered for classes – before classes actually begin.
Are schools required to submit early registration files?
No. Early registration files are optional, and schools are not required to report early registration data. However, schools that have chosen to schedule early registration reporting with the National Student Clearinghouse must advise the Clearinghouse before making any changes to their early registration file submission schedule.
What are the benefits of submitting an Early Registration file?
The early registration reporting option allows schools to get student enrollment information to lenders as quickly as possible, helping to keep students eligible for deferment in a deferrable status. For students, early registration reporting means that they qualify for an in-school enrolled status and are not responsible for repaying their loans while enrolled. This enrolled status sometimes means access to discounts or other benefits for students.
Which schools should use this service?
Any school can take advantage of early registration reporting, but the Clearinghouse particularly recommends it for schools meeting certain qualifications:
- Schools that participate in EnrollmentVerify
- Schools with over 5,000 students enrolled
- Schools that have a large percentage of student loan borrowers
- Schools that plan to transmit the first of term file more than 18 days after the term begin date
When can early registration files be submitted to the Clearinghouse?
The Clearinghouse can accept early registration files up to 30 days before the start of term, and as late as 10 days after the term begins.
When are early registration files not accepted by the Clearinghouse?
We don’t accept early registration files for terms that are not required (e.g., summer or mini-winter terms). In addition, schools must close out the prior semester’s reporting before the Clearinghouse can accept early registration files for the upcoming semester.
Does the Clearinghouse accept non-deferrable statuses on early registration files?
Although early registration files are used for compliance reporting, the Clearinghouse doesn’t accept less than half time or withdrawn statuses on these files. This is because students still have the opportunity to add classes during the school’s add/drop period, putting themselves back into deferrable status.
My school’s early registration file generated SSCR errors. What can I do?
We advise schools to wait until they have submitted first of term reporting, as the SSCR errors typically resolve automatically once first of term reporting is in. To avoid seeing those errors at all, we encourage schools to wait until the term begins to submit the early registration file, keeping in mind that the early registration reporting window closes 10 days after the start of term.
If you have questions or need assistance, please contact the Clearinghouse at 703.742.4200 (select options #7, #4) or .
We also invite you to “Join the Journey” as the Clearinghouse gets a head start on our 25th anniversary as your trusted partner in 2018 with an academic year filled with new events, services, and more.
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Compliance Central: Updates, tips and resources to help you stay in compliance