COTOP Information (Chancellor’s Office Tax Offset Program)
What is the Chancellor’s Office Tax Offset Program (COTOP)?
The COTOP program is a method of collecting past due fees for the Peralta District owed by former students. The Peralta District Finance Department reviews the accounts receivables and only submits those debts that are permitted to be collected through COTOP.
Student accounts that have past due fees may be submitted to COTOP. This can include enrollment & associated fees incurred at any of the four Peralta Colleges – Laney College, Merritt College, Berkeley City College and College of Alameda.
The Office of Finance & Administration will send out a letter to the last known address of a student, instructing them that they may be sent to COTOP. The student then has 30 days to pay their fees in full or to make payment arrangements.
Please be aware that this debt will NOT be submitted to any major credit agencies.
What do I Need to do if Receive a COTOP Letter in the Mail?
Please follow the instructions on the letter you have received. You can pay your fees either online through your Peralta Passport account or in person at a cashier’s office on any of the four Peralta Colleges. If your fees are not paid in full in the 30 days after the letters are sent out, your information will be submitted to COTOP.
You may submit objections and any relevant documentation to this action personally or in writing to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Finance & Administration located at 333 East 8th Street, Oakland, CA 94606 within 30 days from the date of this letter. Upon receipt of your objections, a college representative will review your case. If the representative finds that the debt is in error, the COTOP request will be withdrawn or the amount corrected. If no objections are submitted or if the objections are considered to be insufficient, we will proceed with this action.
You may contact Shamal Stegeman at firstname.lastname@example.org & (510) 466-7372 or Dominique Benavides at email@example.com & (510) 466-7399 for clarification on what the COTOP entails, set up an appointment to dispute the fees or to set up payment arrangements. Only students with scheduled appointments may be seen.
Why has my Tax Return Been Taken by Peralta?
Your past due student fees were submitted to COTOP due to non-payment. Because Peralta did not receive anything in writing to dispute the charges explained above, COTOP was used as a collections tool provided by the State of California. If you want to dispute your charges, please follow the instructions above.
How Much do I Owe?
You can access your Peralta passport account and check the amount you owe at https://passport.peralta.edu by using your login information.
Please see visit the Fees & Tuition page for information on how fees are calculated, and what you are responsible for paying by enrolling in courses at the Peralta Colleges.
Please be aware of the Academic Calendar as it pertains directly to the fees you are responsible for paying.