Office of the University Registrar

Hardship Withdrawal Petition for Courses

A hardship withdrawal may be granted by the Office of the University Registrar (OUR) if a student is unable to complete the course(s) because of a physical and/or mental debilitation or unusual and extenuating circumstances, beyond the student’s control, which has arisen after the 14th calendar day of the quarter.

The Hardship Withdrawal Committee consults with the appropriate offices to obtain background information on the student’s history at the University to guide and shape the Committee’s decision-making process. These offices will include, but are not limited to, the registrar offices of the professional schools, the Graduate School, International Student Services, and Disability Resource Services. OUR has the authority to make the final decision. OUR will consult with these offices and work to comply with their policies insofar as those policies do not contradict the power vested in the OUR and the rights granted to students by the University’s Scholastic Regulations.

PLEASE NOTE: A Hardship Withdrawal Petition is not a petition for a tuition refund; by default, all tuition forfeiture policies will apply to a hardship withdrawal. Students wishing to submit a Tuition Forfeiture Petition must contact Student Fiscal Services.

Hardship Withdrawal Resources for non-Seattle students

The Hardship Withdrawal Petition online form is only for Seattle campus students not registered via UW Professional and Continuing Education (PCE).

Hardship Withdrawal Review Dates

Students seeking to petition for a Hardship Withdrawal for the current quarter will need to wait to submit their petition for that quarter until after the grade submission deadline has passed. The Hardship Withdrawal Committee cannot change academic history for approved petitions until grades have posted, which is after the grade submission deadline. Any petitions that are submitted prior to the deadlines below will be held for review until the dates posted here:

Quarter/Year Petition Review Dates
Winter 2020 Petition review begins March 25, 2020
Spring 2020 Petition review begins June 17, 2020
Summer 2020 Petition review begins August 25, 2020
Autumn 2020 Petition review begins December 23, 2020

Hardship Withdrawal Eligibility

  • Students are incapable of completing the course because of a physical and/or mental debilitation, or unusual/extenuating circumstance beyond your control
  • The debilitation or extenuating circumstance arose and/or was diagnosed after the 14th calendar day of the quarter
  • The debilitation or extenuating circumstance prevented the student from dropping the course by the published course drop deadline for the quarter (see the Academic Calendar)
  • Within one year of the quarter being petitioned. Petitions outside the one-year timeline will not be reviewed without documentation of physical inability to file within guidelines.
  • Hardship Withdrawal (HW) Petitions will not be processed once a degree has been conferred.

For more information, see the University’s legislative policy regarding Dropping a Course.

Hardship Withdrawal Petition Process

Prior to Filing the Petition

  • File a separate HW Petition with documentation for each quarter being petitioned
  • HWs will not be granted for coursework that has already been applied to a completed degree.
  • Submission of an HW Petition does not guarantee it will be approved
  • When petitioning for a complete HW of the current quarter – students are recommended to withdraw themselves from the quarter
  • Students with F1 Visa status need to meet with an International Student Services (ISS) adviser to be apprised of any Visa status changes due to HW approval.
  • Students filing a HW petition within two weeks of the close of the quarter, should first consider requesting an “I” (Incomplete) grade from instructors.
  • Students applying for an HW from some, but not all, courses must have documentation for why that particular course(s) was impacted. E.g., The student could not complete DANCE 105 because of a broken foot.

Requirements for Filing the Petition

  • A UWNetID is required to access and file a HW Petition
  • Incomplete petitions will not be reviewed.
  • Hardship statements are required
    • The student must submit a concise statement clearly outlining the circumstances for the HW Petition (e.g., the physical debilitation, or the extenuating circumstance beyond their control)
    • How these circumstances affect the student’s ability to complete coursework for the course(s) being petitioned
    • How these circumstances prevent the student from dropping the course(s) by the drop deadline.
  • Appropriate Supporting Documentation is required
    • Students will be required to upload supporting documentation when filing the HW Petition.
    • All documentation must be in English. Documents not originally written in English must be translated by an accredited translator or a third party professional, and the translator contact information must be included.
  • Hardship due to physical and/or mental debilitation
    • The student’s health care provider should complete the UW Seattle Hardship Withdrawal Healthcare Provider Form, or submit a signed document on official letterhead that provides all information requested on the form.
      *No other forms of documentation (e.g., medical bills, prescription lists, test results) will be reviewed.
    • A Health Care Provider form or letter specific to the quarter must be provided for each quarter being petitioned.
    • Documentation may be verified directly with the provider at the discretion of the HW committee.
  • Hardship due to death of a family member
    • Documentation of both the death and the student’s relationship to the deceased must be provided.
    • Examples of documentation would include a death certificate, a copy of a remembrance of a service, a funeral notice, etc.

Information for Healthcare Providers

If a student has reached out to you regarding providing supporting documentation for their Hardship Withdrawal Petition, please complete the Healthcare Provider Form below and return to the student or submit to

Healthcare Provider Form

File the Petition

A UWNetID is required to access the Hardship Withdrawal Petition Online Form.
Please review all the information on this page before completing and submitting the Hardship Withdrawal Petition form.
Ineligible and incomplete forms will not be considered.

Hardship Withdrawal Petition Form

After Filing the Petition

  • The student will be notified by email of the HW Committee’s decision. This will typically occur within three weeks after the petition is submitted, but may take longer.
  • If the petition is approved, the student’s transcript will show the petitioned course(s) with a grade of “HW.”
  • Grades cannot be restored once an HW Petition has been granted.
  • No details of hardship will be shared with anyone outside the HW Board.
  • If the petition is denied, please review the Hardship Withdrawal Petition FAQ for information.

Medical, Emotional, and Behavioral Support Resources

Nothing is more important than a student’s health and well-being. Students who may be struggling with medical, emotional, or behavioral issues which are impacting their academic success are strongly encouraged to reach out to one of the following resources for support and to help create a plan to address any struggles being experienced. Below are some key resources at the University of Washington that can help support students in this regard.

Student Life: A comprehensive portal of wellness services on campus.
Husky Health and Well-Being

Undergraduate Academic Affairs: Advising and academic planning services.
UAA Advising

OMA&D: Advising and assistance for students from low-income families, students who are first in their family to graduate from a four-year college, and underrepresented minority students.
OMA&D Academic Counseling Services

UW Police: Confidential advocacy and support for victims of crime.
UW Police Victim Advocate

OUR: Calendar of course drop dates and related policies.
Course Drop Policy/Periods