Non-Academic Petitions

Non-Academic Petitions:

 If you would like to petition an action of York University that is not related to your academic career, here is the source of information on how to do it.  Possible areas of petitions include: financial, library fines and parking petitions.  

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You may petition academic course related fees (tuition) for reasons of medical, compassion (i.e. death in the family) or other compelling, extenuating circumstances.

Be aware, however, that you are still required to pay your student account by the published deadlines regardless of whether you have submitted a petition or not. In other words, a Financial Petition does NOT put your student account on hold and you will be responsible for any accrued interest.

The financial petition is for tuition charges only and the course/s for which you are requesting a refund must be officially dropped from your record before filing a petition. The entire process takes approximately eight weeks from the date received. The sooner that you can submit your petition, the better!  

The main factor the Financial Petitions Committee will consider in your petition is whether the circumstances that prevented you from finishing the classes could have been conceivably known when you registered for the class, or before any of the refund dates. If the answer is yes, then your petition will likely not be successful.  

Finally, try to be very precise about any changes you made to your enrolment status through the online system. Every time you do a transaction on the system it keeps a log of what you did and when. Many a student has tried to convince the University that the computer lies, but the truth is, there is a tendency to believe the machine. If you are unsure as to when you made transactions, you can view your transaction history by logging on to the Passport- York system. 

Process 

1. Pick up a financial petition form from Student Financial Services located in suite N201 of the Bennett Centre for Student Services, or by downloading it from the SFS (Student Financial Services) section of the York University Website. 

2. Read the guidelines carefully to determine your eligibility to submit a financial petition. The Committee follows the rules outlined in the most current Lecture Schedule so bone up on those rules. Follow instructions outlined on the form (fill out the form, attach supporting documentation, submit it to Student Financial Services).

3. Write a letter to explain the reasons why you originally enrolled in the courses; what prevented you from completing the courses; why it was not possible to drop the courses before the financial drop deadline; and why you feel you should be allowed a refund.

The Petitions Secretary prepares the file for the Petitions Committee, which is made up of representatives of the University’s administration and a Student member. If your petition is similar to a previous petition that the committee has already decided on, the petitions secretary may simply apply the same outcome to yours.

Possible outcomes may include:  

• full financial reimbursement
• partial financial reimbursement
• permission to take the course again for free
• a tuition credit toward you next year  

4. Once the Petitions Committee makes its decision, the results will be mailed to you.  

5. If your petition is successful, any adjustment to your student account will automatically be made.

6. If your petition is not successful, you have the right to submit an appeal, but only if you have new information and/or documentation that was not submitted in your original petition. The procedure is the same as the previous one. All additional information and/or documentation will be forwarded to an appeals committee along with the original submission for their review. If you feel that your petition did not get an adequate hearing the first time, and you have new information or evidence of a procedural irregularity you have nothing to lose by appealing.  

Fines  

Bills are calculated when overdue material is renewed or returned. Although materials are not due on days when the Libraries are closed, overdue fines accumulate. Borrowing privileges are suspended immediately for University borrowers with charges of $10.00 or more or 10 overdue items.  

While they have no obligation to, in dire circumstances and if you plead a good case, any librarian can temporarily over-ride a block and extend your privileges. Alternately, as soon as you petition your fines, your privileges will be reinstated while the library processes your form. The petition form can be picked up at the counter and filled out right there.  

Lost and Damaged Materials  

Lost or damaged materials must be reported to the appropriate Circulation Department. Library materials are assumed lost and charges for the cost of replacing these materials are levied after 15 days following the due date for reserve loans, and 50 days for regular stack materials. Borrowers losing or failing to return materials, or returning materials in damaged condition are subject to a $45.00 charge to cover the cost of replacing the material, a $15.00 service charge, plus any outstanding fines. In lieu of the $45.00 replacement charge, after consultation with library staff it is possible to purchase an acceptable replacement copy. The service charge is not refunded if a book billed for replacement is found and returned.  

If the library believes that a book or other library resource has been lost and you believe you returned it you can file an inquiry at the circulation desk. Once filed, every week for a month, a member of the library staff will search their stacks and holdings for the missing material. If found, they will contact you. If the material does not turn-up you will then have to pay for a replacement.  

Additional Sanctions  

The following additional sanctions may be applied where appropriate:

Withholding of transcripts, permission to re-register or permission to graduate being denied. Potential graduates with charges of $25.00 or more may not be permitted to graduate until the charges are paid.  

Appeals 

Inquiries concerning the application of the Lending Code may be made to the appropriate Circulation Department. Inquiries will be investigated and responded to if submitted in writing within 60 days of the due date. All borrowers may appeal the application of fines or sanctions.  

There are four possible steps in this process. At each stage in the process the borrower is provided with the opportunity to have the decision reviewed by the individual or committee with the particular responsibility for the application of the fines and/or sanctions. At each step the borrower is afforded the opportunity to provide additional information to assist the reviewer. Library staff will assist the borrower at each step in the process.  

The steps are as follows:  

Petition: To the head of the Circulation unit concerned;
Appeal Stage 1: To the head of that Library/Department;
Appeal Stage 2: To the University Librarian;
Appeal Stage 3: To the Senate Library Committee;

To appeal library fines you need to fill out a petition form at the circulation desk of the library you borrowed the materials from. While it is always wise to attach supporting information, you can be as brief as to simply explain on the form why you were unable to return the materials on time. Compassionate grounds, illness or being unable to reach the university due to circumstances beyond your control are all-acceptable. Within two to four weeks the Records Co-coordinator will contact you in writing and ask you to come in and speak with her. If successful, you may have to pay part of your fines or can have all of your fines forgiven.  

The petition for a parking fine is called an “Objection Against a Parking and Traffic Violation”. When writing your petition keep in mind that the people who are reading it are generally people from within the Parking and Security Department at York. If you spend a page ranting on about how poor parking is at York and how the people who work there have a personal grudge against you, then you are not going to get very far.  

In past experience it has also been found that the following lines do not find much success in the parking petition process: 

“Everybody parks there and I’m the only one who got a ticket”
“I was only there for five (or ten, etc. ) minutes”
“Gosh, darn, I thought it was a space”
“I did not see the sign” or “the sign wasn’t there when I parked my car”
“I can’t afford the fine” 

As with all other petitions, be clear, be to the point and be polite. 

Process 

1. After being fined, you have 5 business days in which to submit a Notice of Objection.You can pick up the forms at Parking and Transportation Services, Room 222 William Small Centre at the Main Information Booth located on York Blvd. off Keele (at the main entrance), at the Glendon Parking Office at the Greenhouse, or you can submit it from the website

2. Prepare the Notice of Objection. Make sure to include your name, full mailing address, parking violation number, decal number (if applicable), telephone number and York affiliation (i.e. student, tenant, staff, faculty). 

3. If you wish to discuss your individual case, then please discuss it with any CustomerService Representative at the Parking Office. Appointments may be made with the Parking Office Administration Supervisor, or the Parking Manager.  

4. Make your argument in a clear and legible manner and remember to include all supporting documentation (such as medical note, conference pass etc). 

5. Keep the appeal as short as possible while still providing pertinent information. 

6. Indicate that you have taken measures to correct your problem, or if this is your first offense, point that out and state that you now understand the University Parking Regulations. 

7. Submit your Notice of Objection to the Parking Office. At this office, it will be date stamped and entered into the database as being ‘under appeal.’ Parking staff then assembles all of the relevant documents pertaining to the specific violation (i.e. an occurrence report, report from the Parking Enforcement Officer or Security, photo-graphic evidence, etc. ). They tend to have a fair amount of support documentation for their actions so it is best to give an accurate version of events. 

8. All documentation is then forwarded to the Appeals Committee, which consists of volunteer members of the Presidential Advisory Committee on Parking (PACOP) and administrative staff from the Department of Safety, Security and Parking. The Committee meets monthly to review objections and render decisions.  

9. After the committee has reached its decision, you will be contacted by mail.  

10. If your Notice of Objection was denied, you may request a hearing before an appeals panel providing you outline in writing the reasons for requesting a hearing (this must be done in 10 working days from the date of which the decision was mailed). The grounds for a hearing are new information, and/or clarification of information submitted in the original appeal.  

11. The Chair and/or Deputy Chair will then decide: 

  • To reverse the initial decision
  • To uphold the original decision (and an administrative fee of $15 may be imposed)
  • To grant an appeal hearing 

12. If an appeal hearing is granted, 3 dates will be offered to the appellant. Failure of the appellant to accept one of these dates, or to not appear for a scheduled hearing will result in the upholding of the initial decision.  

13. Decisions on Appeals are final and binding.