FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Discuss various money matters here. Loans (federal and private), scholarships, lottery winnings, or other school finance related information and queries.
jimmyd11011
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FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby jimmyd11011 » Mon Jan 04, 2010 8:40 pm

I have no idea what to do here. I'm coming straight out of undergrad, if that matters. What are the positives and negatives either way?

savesthedayajb
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby savesthedayajb » Mon Jan 04, 2010 8:42 pm

jimmyd11011 wrote:I have no idea what to do here. I'm coming straight out of undergrad, if that matters. What are the positives and negatives either way?


I though they only asked me that question because they declared me as an independent. Are you independent? If not, I'm pretty sure you are required to fill out that information.

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JayTal
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby JayTal » Mon Jan 04, 2010 8:52 pm

I played around on the FAFSA site, and I'm pretty sure once you go onto graduate school you're considered independent. So no need to fill out ur parent's info!

Anonymous Loser
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby Anonymous Loser » Mon Jan 04, 2010 8:58 pm

If you can check ANY of the following boxes, you will not have to provide parental information. Skip to page 4.
If you check NONE of the following boxes, you will be asked to provide parental information. Go to the next page.
❑ I was born before
January 1, 1987
❑ I am serving on active duty in
the U.S. Armed Forces
❑ Since I turned age 13, both of
my parents were deceased
❑ I was a dependent or ward of
the court since turning age 13
❑ I am married
❑ I am a veteran of the U.S. Armed
Forces
❑ I was in foster care since turning
age 13
❑ I am currently or I was an
emancipated minor
I will be working on a master’s or doctorate program (e.g., MA, MBA,
MD, JD, PhD, EdD, graduate certificate)

❑ I have children and I provide more than half of their support
❑ I have dependents (other than children or my spouse) who live with
me and I provide more than half of their support
❑ I am homeless or I am at risk of
being homeless
❑ I am currently or I was in legal
guardianship


Source: http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/fafsaws01c.pdf

savesthedayajb
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby savesthedayajb » Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:11 pm

If we are independent and dont fill out the parental info, does that mean out estimated family contribution will be $0? How can they know how much our family can contribute if they dont know their income etc.?

joliveri
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby joliveri » Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:27 pm

be careful however and pay attention to what specific schools look for on their applications for institutional need based grants. I know Penn State notes on their application that if you are under 30 and have no dependents other than a spouse then you must submit parental information on the fafsa in order to be eligible for their institutional need based grants. Im not sure if other schools are like this, but I guess I would just suggest that you do the research before you fill out the fafsa since the schools with the earliest financial aid deadlines aren't until at mid Feb.

savesthedayajb
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby savesthedayajb » Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:29 pm

joliveri wrote:be careful however and pay attention to what specific schools look for on their applications for institutional need based grants. I know Penn State notes on their application that if you are under 30 and have no dependents other than a spouse then you must submit parental information on the fafsa in order to be eligible for their institutional need based grants. Im not sure if other schools are like this, but I guess I would just suggest that you do the research before you fill out the fafsa since the schools with the earliest financial aid deadlines aren't until at mid Feb.


Good advice. Didn't even think of that.

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MC Southstar
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby MC Southstar » Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:34 pm

Penn:

The parental information will be used to determine the ability of the parents to contribute financial assistance to meet educational expenses. Your financial aid application will not be evaluated unless the required parental/spousal information is provided. This is so even though all graduate students are technically "independent" under federal guidelines. We will take an estimated parental contribution into account when awarding financial aid, but students can make that contribution up in the form of an additional loan - therefore, parents are not obligated to contribute the estimated parent contribution.

Makes sense or it'd be really hard to fairly compare applicants.

bahama
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby bahama » Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:11 am

joliveri wrote:be careful however and pay attention to what specific schools look for on their applications for institutional need based grants. I know Penn State notes on their application that if you are under 30 and have no dependents other than a spouse then you must submit parental information on the fafsa in order to be eligible for their institutional need based grants. Im not sure if other schools are like this, but I guess I would just suggest that you do the research before you fill out the fafsa since the schools with the earliest financial aid deadlines aren't until at mid Feb.


Also, a lot of schools will have you fill out parental info on Need Access in addition to or instead of on FAFSA for the same reason.

Pretty much every school that does need based aid is going to require parental info in some form or another.

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mhd08
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby mhd08 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:22 am

How does your parent's income apply if they aren't willing to contribute anything to your tuition? I'm afraid I won't be granted much based on my parent's info, even though they're not contributing to my tuition. Grrr.

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los blancos
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby los blancos » Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:34 am

mhd08 wrote:How does your parent's income apply if they aren't willing to contribute anything to your tuition? I'm afraid I won't be granted much based on my parent's info, even though they're not contributing to my tuition. Grrr.



Yeah, the process is unfair to people like you. I would also get nothing based on parent info but I'm fortunate that my parents are more than willing to foot the bill. I may take loans regardless in case I decide to do LRAP.

thisguy456
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby thisguy456 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 3:53 am

boilercat wrote:
mhd08 wrote:How does your parent's income apply if they aren't willing to contribute anything to your tuition? I'm afraid I won't be granted much based on my parent's info, even though they're not contributing to my tuition. Grrr.



Yeah, the process is unfair to people like you. I would also get nothing based on parent info but I'm fortunate that my parents are more than willing to foot the bill. I may take loans regardless in case I decide to do LRAP.


It's fair because although your parents won't be contributing to your education at this point, if you find yourself in trouble down the road after law school (unemployed or underemployed) and you can't afford payments on loans, then you technically can rely on a social safety network where your parents will probably come to your aid and help financially. Others with parents that have very little or no income to contribute are in a much worse situation should they find themselves in financial trouble after law school. I'm in your situation too, but that's how I justify it, and it sorta makes sense.

bahama
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby bahama » Tue Jan 05, 2010 12:55 pm

Plus from the school's perspective there is a very limited pool of need based grants to go around so they have to have some way to differentiate between people since most applicants are recently out of college with very few assets or income of their own.

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sundevil77
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby sundevil77 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:07 pm

Does anyone know what effect being married has on need based awards? If I'm married, but under 30, will that have any bearing on the financial info they need/require from my parents? My parents are clear-cut middle class and I'm afraid I won't get any need-based aid if I have to divulge their info.

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kn6542
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby kn6542 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:10 pm

JayTal wrote:I played around on the FAFSA site, and I'm pretty sure once you go onto graduate school you're considered independent. So no need to fill out ur parent's info!

Um...No.

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kn6542
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby kn6542 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:12 pm

savesthedayajb wrote:If we are independent and dont fill out the parental info, does that mean out estimated family contribution will be $0? How can they know how much our family can contribute if they dont know their income etc.?

In the absence of your nuclear family members, YOU are considered the "family" in the EFC. They don't give a crap who provides the EFC. That's just the amount they don't think the govt should provide. A lot of ppl get a private loan to cover that amount.
Last edited by kn6542 on Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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kn6542
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby kn6542 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:15 pm

sundevil77 wrote:Does anyone know what effect being married has on need based awards? If I'm married, but under 30, will that have any bearing on the financial info they need/require from my parents? My parents are clear-cut middle class and I'm afraid I won't get any need-based aid if I have to divulge their info.

This all varies by school. Contact the law school you are attending. Most schools seem to work around some variation of the "seven years of filing taxes for yourself" scheme.

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los blancos
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby los blancos » Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:16 pm

thisguy456 wrote:
boilercat wrote:
mhd08 wrote:How does your parent's income apply if they aren't willing to contribute anything to your tuition? I'm afraid I won't be granted much based on my parent's info, even though they're not contributing to my tuition. Grrr.



Yeah, the process is unfair to people like you. I would also get nothing based on parent info but I'm fortunate that my parents are more than willing to foot the bill. I may take loans regardless in case I decide to do LRAP.


It's fair because although your parents won't be contributing to your education at this point, if you find yourself in trouble down the road after law school (unemployed or underemployed) and you can't afford payments on loans, then you technically can rely on a social safety network where your parents will probably come to your aid and help financially. Others with parents that have very little or no income to contribute are in a much worse situation should they find themselves in financial trouble after law school. I'm in your situation too, but that's how I justify it, and it sorta makes sense.



Yeah, makes sense. It would just really suck for anyone completely estranged from their [rich] parents.

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kn6542
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby kn6542 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:17 pm

Anonymous Loser wrote:
If you can check ANY of the following boxes, you will not have to provide parental information. Skip to page 4.
If you check NONE of the following boxes, you will be asked to provide parental information. Go to the next page.
❑ I was born before
January 1, 1987
❑ I am serving on active duty in
the U.S. Armed Forces
❑ Since I turned age 13, both of
my parents were deceased
❑ I was a dependent or ward of
the court since turning age 13
❑ I am married
❑ I am a veteran of the U.S. Armed
Forces
❑ I was in foster care since turning
age 13
❑ I am currently or I was an
emancipated minor
I will be working on a master’s or doctorate program (e.g., MA, MBA,
MD, JD, PhD, EdD, graduate certificate)

❑ I have children and I provide more than half of their support
❑ I have dependents (other than children or my spouse) who live with
me and I provide more than half of their support
❑ I am homeless or I am at risk of
being homeless
❑ I am currently or I was in legal
guardianship


Source: http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/fafsaws01c.pdf



"Independent" for the FAFSA, and "independent" for law school FA offices are not the same thing.

lz06
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby lz06 » Wed Jan 06, 2010 7:23 pm

I already submitted my FAFSA without parent info, and now I see that some schools require parent info.. Am I suppose to go back and edit my FAFSA, or do schools have a separate form for parent info (for ex. Penn)? This is confusing...

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rw2264
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby rw2264 » Wed Jan 06, 2010 7:29 pm

thisguy456 wrote:
boilercat wrote:
mhd08 wrote:How does your parent's income apply if they aren't willing to contribute anything to your tuition? I'm afraid I won't be granted much based on my parent's info, even though they're not contributing to my tuition. Grrr.



Yeah, the process is unfair to people like you. I would also get nothing based on parent info but I'm fortunate that my parents are more than willing to foot the bill. I may take loans regardless in case I decide to do LRAP.


It's fair because although your parents won't be contributing to your education at this point, if you find yourself in trouble down the road after law school (unemployed or underemployed) and you can't afford payments on loans, then you technically can rely on a social safety network where your parents will probably come to your aid and help financially. Others with parents that have very little or no income to contribute are in a much worse situation should they find themselves in financial trouble after law school. I'm in your situation too, but that's how I justify it, and it sorta makes sense.


what if your parents aren't supporting you because they dislike you? (points to self)

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John J. Rambo, Esq.
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby John J. Rambo, Esq. » Sat Jan 09, 2010 1:14 pm

Is there an exhaustive list anywhere of schools that require parent info on FAFSA? I searched, but couldn't find one. Seems like most schools that want parent info ask for the Need Access form instead.

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Doritos
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby Doritos » Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:56 am

kn6542 wrote:
JayTal wrote:I played around on the FAFSA site, and I'm pretty sure once you go onto graduate school you're considered independent. So no need to fill out ur parent's info!

Um...No.



Hmmm...I was told otherwise by the financial aid team at Ohio State Law. They told me that if you are applying for grad/professional school you are independent as far as financial aid goes. They emailed me this a couple months ago...so yeah...

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Kohinoor
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby Kohinoor » Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:58 am

mhd08 wrote:How does your parent's income apply if they aren't willing to contribute anything to your tuition? I'm afraid I won't be granted much based on my parent's info, even though they're not contributing to my tuition. Grrr.

If it makes you feel better, think of the accrued benefits of having wealthy parents as being a proxy for their contribution to your tuition.

DukeHopeful
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Re: FAFSA -"Do you want to answer questions about your parents?"

Postby DukeHopeful » Wed Jan 13, 2010 3:21 am

But the bottom line, according to the federal government (via FAFSA) is that we are not required to release our parents' financial info. Now if a specific school asks the question, that's a different story, but in general, I would say w/o a doubt that parental info is unnecessary on the FAFSA. That's the way the gov't runs its own ship. Until I'm specifically required to, I'm not discussing anything but my own financial situation since I'm the only one contributing to law school. And to all of those that say that those with with parents who are better off financially are in a position to be better positioned if they default on their loans, that's BS. Sure, some parents might step in, but I would suspect that most parents, like mine, feel that once you have a college education, you are qualified to make your own decisions (such as taking out loans for LS) and you are old enough to handle the consequences of said decisions. Thus, no help if you default. It's unfair to categorize those who were born into a family of parents who worked very hard to achieve the level of financial success that they enjoy as students who are immune to loan debts. My parents, having come from nothing before reaching the point that they have reached today, believe that hard work and dedication are the keys to success (certainly a stretch there (sarcasm)) and this cannot be given through inheritance.

I certainly understand the advantages inherent in a middle class upraising, don't get me wrong. I am thankful for the opportunities afforded to me simply by luck of being born into the situation I was. But I also think it's naive to think that simply having wealthy parents means you are immune to dealing with any financial setbacks as a result of student loans.

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