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Retroactive Medical and Compassionate Withdrawal for Undergraduate Students

Effective Spring, Summer, Fall 2020, and Spring 2021

In certain exceptional circumstances it is necessary for a student to withdraw from courses after the course has been completed. In such cases, undergraduate students may request a medical and compassionate withdrawal using the form linked below. Graduate students should request an academic leave of absence from their department. 

Typically, these are for complete withdrawals from the university, however there are times when well documented cases warrant only a partial withdrawal. Supporting documentation should include enough detail for the committee to understand why the student was unable to withdrawal during the outlined withdraw period for that class or how the exceptional circumstance occurred after the established withdraw period for the class.When it is necessary to withdraw from courses after the last course has completed, the committee considers:

  • Extraordinary circumstances, such as a serious illness or injury, preventing the student from continuing classes. The medical withdrawal policy covers both physical health and mental health. 
  • Extraordinary personal reasons, not related to the student's personal physical health or mental health, preventing the student from continuing in classes.

As a student it is important to consider all the impacts of the withdrawal.

To be considered for a Retroactive Medical or Compassionate Withdrawal, the undergraduate student should submit a request as soon as possible. A complete request will include documentation from the student's healthcare provider that may include:

  • The date of onset of illness
  • The dates the student was under professional care
  • The general nature of the medical condition and why/how it prevented the student completing coursework
  • The last date the student was able to attend class

Once the appropriate documentation has been collected, submit the Retroactive Medical and Compassionate Withdrawal Request. The request will be reviewed by a committee which consists of university staff, including a representative from the student's school or college. In some cases tuition refunds may also be granted through the process, however, this depends on each student's unique circumstances. There is an option on the form to request consideration for a tuition and fee refund.

Graduate students please visit with your academic department about a possible leave of absence.

Submit a Retroactive Medical and Compassionate Withdrawal Form

Under exceptional circumstances if a physical or mental incapacity prevents the student from filing his or her own appeal, another individual on the student’s behalf, may petition. Please email studentrecords@ku.edu for an alternative form to submit.


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