Should I Apply for FAFSA if My Parents Make a Lot of Money?

In the event you assume you may’t get monetary assist for faculty as a result of your mother and father make an excessive amount of cash, it’s value your time to fill out the FAFSA, aka the Free Utility for Federal Scholar Help.


Eligibility for monetary assist depends upon a variety of elements (we’ll clarify in a minute), however households who assume their revenue is just too excessive to qualify for need-based assist may very well be leaving a pile of free cash and low-interest loans on the desk by neglecting to fill out their monetary info.

Do you assume your mother and father make an excessive amount of cash so that you can qualify for monetary assist? We’re right here to clarify why you need to nonetheless submit the FAFSA — and the way you should still get cash for the varsity yr that’s drawing to an finish should you apply by the June 30 deadline.

The FAFSA is the shape you employ to report household info used to find out your federal monetary assist package deal, together with scholar loans, scholarships, grants and work-study.

Ought to I Apply for FAFSA?

Sure. No matter your or your mother and father’ revenue, you need to fill out a FAFSA utility. Federal scholar assist doesn’t have an revenue cut-off and extra elements are considered. Plus, the FAFSA could also be required for merit-based awards you qualify for.

Why Does My Mother and father’ Earnings Matter for FAFSA Anyhow?

In the event you’re the one going to school and paying for it, why does your mother and father’ revenue matter?

Yeah, you may need to take that up together with your Uncle Sam.

Even should you’re paying 100% of your school bills, dwelling by yourself and submitting your personal taxes, you’ll nonetheless want to incorporate your mother and father’ data should you don’t meet the FAFSA standards for an unbiased scholar. Right here’s the checklist of questions to find out your FAFSA dependency standing.

Professional Tip

If there’s any query about whose info to incorporate in your utility, try the Division of Training’s rulesfor figuring out who your father or mother is in the case of filling out the FAFSA.

If you’re thought of a dependent, you’ll have to incorporate each your and your mother and father’ monetary data to calculate your anticipated household contribution (EFC).

Primarily based on that quantity, your school monetary assist workplace determines the quantity of monetary assist you’ll obtain, utilizing these two formulation:

  1. Value of attendance – anticipated household contribution = need-based assist (contains federal Pell grants, direct sponsored loans and federal work-study)
  2. Value of attendance – monetary assist awarded to date (contains personal scholarships) = non-need-based assist (contains direct unsubsidized loans, Plus loans and TEACH Grants)

When calculating a household’s EFC, the coed’s revenue and belongings rely for greater than the mother and father’. For many dependent college students, that’s excellent news, as they sometimes don’t earn as a lot as their mother and father or have as many belongings.

My Mother and father Make Too A lot — Why Ought to I Nonetheless Fill Out FAFSA?

No matter your loved ones’s revenue and belongings, you need to nonetheless fill out the FAFSA. Listed here are three the reason why it’s value your time.

1. Earnings Isn’t the Solely Issue

In addition to your loved ones’s revenue, right here’s what else helps decide eligibility:

  1. Property (like a home or checking account).

  2. Advantages (together with unemployment and Social Safety).

  3. Household measurement.

  4. Variety of members of the family who will attend school or profession faculty in the course of the yr.

  5. Your yr at school.

And opposite to what you might have heard, federal scholar assist doesn’t have an revenue cut-off.

Professional Tip

Even should you assume you received’t qualify, fill out the FAFSA earlier than making use of for personal scholar loans. The low rates of interest and advantages of federal loans make them value not less than making an attempt for first.

Sure, the next EFC might take you out of the working for sponsored scholar loans, however you might be eligible for unsubsidized loans, which nonetheless supply the federal scholar mortgage protections and low rates of interest.

“Everybody ought to fill it out — it doesn’t matter should you’re a millionaire, billionaire or haven’t any cash,” mentioned Billie Jo Weis with My School Planning Staff.

2. It’s About Extra Than Federal Scholar Loans

Do not forget that monetary assist is greater than federal scholar loans and need-based scholarships.

While you fill out the FAFSA, you’re making use of for funds out of your state and your faculty, too.

Loads of that assist isn’t based mostly on want (aka merit-based assist), however the awarding establishment will solely contemplate you should you’ve filed the FAFSA.

Professional Tip

Some colleges additionally require the CSS Profile to use for monetary assist. If yours does, you’ll discover a hyperlink to the School Board web site among the many monetary assist types in your school’s web site.

The smaller applicant pool for departmental scholarships inside your main might supply better probabilities to snag scholarship cash, as an example.

You probably have any designs on finding out overseas, scholarships and low-interest scholar loans may also help cowl your bills.

To qualify for a lot of this cash, you have to have a FAFSA on file.

3. Think about It an Insurance coverage Coverage

Your mother and father assured you that they will cowl your school prices. Congratulations! But when we’ve discovered something lately, it’s that nothing is assured.

The FAFSA is greater than an utility for monetary assist at the moment — it’s a backup in case of a disaster tomorrow, based on Michael G. Thomas Jr., an Accredited Monetary Counselor with a Ph.D. in Monetary Planning from the College of Georgia.

“When households don’t do it, it’s nearly like saying you don’t have insurance coverage within the occasion that an sudden monetary shock occurs,” he mentioned. “If you have already got the data on file, the monetary assist workplace can truly return and have a look at your state of affairs and award you or offer you assets in a short time.”

Within the midst of a disaster, do you actually need to be monitoring down your mother and father’ revenue tax return from two years in the past?

How Do I Submit My FAFSA?

You’ll want to assemble important paperwork like tax returns and Social Safety numbers earlier than finishing the FAFSA kind. In the event you’ve by no means filed the FAFSA earlier than, you and your mother and father should first every create your personal FSA IDs.

Why the necessity for a number of accounts? Your FSA ID has the identical authorized standing as your signature, so you need to use it to signal legally binding paperwork electronically.

Give your self some lead time for creating your IDs earlier than you need to fill out the FAFSA — it could actually take as much as three days to your ID utility to course of.

When you’re ready (and even earlier than), you will get an thought of what info you’ll want for the FAFSA by printing out the FAFSA on the net worksheet. Doing this pre-work will enable you to keep away from getting overwhelmed once you’re filling out the precise FAFSA (and the printout can act as your cheat sheet).

Professional Tip

When the FAFSA utility says “you” it’s referring to the coed, not the father or mother — as in “your title” or “did you file.” Reply questions accordingly.

Upon getting your IDs and pertinent data in hand, try our information to filling out the FAFSA.

Yow will discover the deadlines for FAFSA right here, however you principally have to know that the deadline is June 30 of the present faculty yr. The opening date to submit is Oct. 1 earlier than a faculty yr begins. So you could have a 21-month window from opening date to deadline to submit your FAFSA kind every year.

Don’t let the prolonged utility interval lull you into complacency. Some monetary assist is awarded on a first-come, first-served foundation. And most states and schools have their very own (a lot earlier) deadlines.

Though a lot of the cash will get distributed early, you may submit your FAFSA up till June 30 of the varsity yr you simply accomplished — and there typically is assist nonetheless accessible. So should you haven’t filed a FAFSA but for the 2021-22 faculty yr, you could have till June 30.

The primary day you may file FAFSA for the next faculty yr is Oct. 1 — so for the 2022-23 faculty yr, you might have filed FAFSA beginning Oct. 1, 2021. And for the 2023-24 faculty yr, you may file the FAFSA beginning Oct. 1, 2022.

You possibly can file the FAFSA through the online, through the myStudentAid app, via a faculty or by mail. Submitting electronically is quicker and can provide you with a warning instantly should you make a mistake on the shape.

Make the sensible transfer by establishing your FSA ID now and gathering your monetary paperwork so that you’ll be able to submit — and on the entrance of the road to assert funds for the next yr.

Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a workers author/editor at The BaghdadTime. Learn her bio and different work right here, then catch her on Twitter @TiffanyWendeln.

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