At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

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sundevil77
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At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby sundevil77 » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:07 am

I'm filling out scholarship applications for some of the schools I've been accepted to and I've been wondering about this. I've marked down that I want to be considered for both merit and need based aid. I've also put down that I expect $0 in family contributions to attend law school (I did UG without parents' help as well).

That being said, my parents would probably be considered middle, maybe slightly upper middle class. Will my parents' financial info automatically ding me from receiving any need based aid? At what parental gross income level would it not make sense to apply?

For example, let's say your parents gross income is between $100K-$200K per year. Would it be dumb to think I'll get any need based aid? What if I expect to get $0 from them? Also, I'm recently married and I don't know what effect, if any, that that will have on the process.

Thanks in advance for any advice/anecdotal experience! :)

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You Gotta Have Faith
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby You Gotta Have Faith » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:10 am

In law school, it's pretty much all merit-based. If that doesn't work out, then there are loans.

Your parents' income is a non-issue for the most part because, as a grad student, you are classified as an independent.

DanInALionsDen
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby DanInALionsDen » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:19 am

Someone ^^^ doesn't know what they're talking about. Your parents income matters. Need based aid is more common than merit based.

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utilitarianjac
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby utilitarianjac » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:20 am

DanInALionsDen wrote:Someone ^^^ doesn't know what they're talking about. Your parents income matters. Need based aid is more common than merit based.


Very true.

And how can you have a point that is pointless?

09042014
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:23 am

DanInALionsDen wrote:Someone ^^^ doesn't know what they're talking about. Your parents income matters. Need based aid is more common than merit based.


Got anything to back that up. There was a thread on this recently and nobody could come up with examples of need based aid below the very top schools. Most schools combine merit and need, and its just really all merit.

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vanwinkle
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby vanwinkle » Tue Jan 12, 2010 2:25 am

Practically all "need based aid" for law students is in the form of federal loans. Scholarships from most schools are given almost universally on a merit basis (to attract applicants with high LSAT or GPA to help bolster that school's rankings). You'll assuredly get offers of loans to cover all the cost of attending regardless of your parents' income level, and you'll get scholarships from schools that like your application and really want you to attend there.

There are a very few schools where this isn't the case and they do give need-based grants, but they're rare and at the very, very top (Harvard, Yale, and ... that may be it.)

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jay115
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby jay115 » Tue Jan 12, 2010 3:43 am

HYS only offer need-based grants, so it actually depends on the school. Unless you're pressed for time however, I don't know why you wouldn't apply for a need-based grant regardless of school.

UCInfo
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby UCInfo » Tue Jan 12, 2010 3:07 pm

The UC law schools offer need-based grants. From what I've gathered, they direct those awards toward people who come from families that are truly low-income, not on independent students who claim no income or students such as the original poster. UC schools say they will become more generous in the need-based department after raising fees so dramatically, but we'll see what happens.

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rw2264
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby rw2264 » Tue Jan 12, 2010 3:25 pm

UCInfo wrote:The UC law schools offer need-based grants. From what I've gathered, they direct those awards toward people who come from families that are truly low-income, not on independent students who claim no income or students such as the original poster. UC schools say they will become more generous in the need-based department after raising fees so dramatically, but we'll see what happens.


maximum grant they award per year is $8k.

other schools give need-based aid, according to their financial aid websites. GWU gives need based aid up to a little over half tuition, or whatever can't be covered by a combination of subsidized and unsubsidized stafford loans (totalling $20,500). so unless they just made this up, at least some non-HYS law schools do give need-based aid.

but if your parents make between $100-200k a year, you're probably not getting any. you might be "independent" in the eyes of the government, but law schools are under no obligation to consider you independent financially.

thorntll
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby thorntll » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:28 am

My understanding is that FAFSA considers you "independent" when you turn 24. Until then, I think you have to submit your parents' info. Although I've heard you can challenge that.

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WrappedUpInBooks
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby WrappedUpInBooks » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:50 am

thorntll wrote:My understanding is that FAFSA considers you "independent" when you turn 24. Until then, I think you have to submit your parents' info. Although I've heard you can challenge that.


That's only true for undergrad, and even then there are exceptions. If you are pursuing graduate/professional school, FAFSA considers you independent, whether you are 24 or not.

Source: I've already started my FAFSA, and it has decided I am independent. I'm 23.

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You Gotta Have Faith
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby You Gotta Have Faith » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:01 pm

utilitarianjac wrote:
DanInALionsDen wrote:Someone ^^^ doesn't know what they're talking about. Your parents income matters. Need based aid is more common than merit based.


Very true.

And how can you have a point that is pointless?


No need to reply to you two... everyone else has already done that.

Miracle
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby Miracle » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:25 pm

jay115 wrote:HYS only offer need-based grants, so it actually depends on the school. Unless you're pressed for time however, I don't know why you wouldn't apply for a need-based grant regardless of school.


Absolutely not true!

Plenty of schools offer need based grants-Michigan, GW, etc.

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thalassocrat
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby thalassocrat » Thu Jan 14, 2010 9:28 pm

Miracle wrote:
jay115 wrote:HYS only offer need-based grants, so it actually depends on the school. Unless you're pressed for time however, I don't know why you wouldn't apply for a need-based grant regardless of school.


Absolutely not true!

Plenty of schools offer need based grants-Michigan, GW, etc.


That's not what he's saying, he's saying HYS don't give merit based. If he'd said "only HYS" instead of "HYS only" then yea, you'd be right.

Also deja vu, I swear I've corrected that same misreading of a similar post in another thread a month or two back.

Miracle
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby Miracle » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:32 pm

thalassocrat wrote:
Miracle wrote:
jay115 wrote:HYS only offer need-based grants, so it actually depends on the school. Unless you're pressed for time however, I don't know why you wouldn't apply for a need-based grant regardless of school.


Absolutely not true!

Plenty of schools offer need based grants-Michigan, GW, etc.


That's not what he's saying, he's saying HYS don't give merit based. If he'd said "only HYS" instead of "HYS only" then yea, you'd be right.

Also deja vu, I swear I've corrected that same misreading of a similar post in another thread a month or two back.



Hahahhaha

it was my post you corrected.

Sorry I messed up again! It seems as if "only" always gets me!

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thalassocrat
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby thalassocrat » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:50 pm

Miracle wrote:
thalassocrat wrote:
Miracle wrote:
jay115 wrote:HYS only offer need-based grants, so it actually depends on the school. Unless you're pressed for time however, I don't know why you wouldn't apply for a need-based grant regardless of school.


Absolutely not true!

Plenty of schools offer need based grants-Michigan, GW, etc.


That's not what he's saying, he's saying HYS don't give merit based. If he'd said "only HYS" instead of "HYS only" then yea, you'd be right.

Also deja vu, I swear I've corrected that same misreading of a similar post in another thread a month or two back.



Hahahhaha

it was my post you corrected.

Sorry I messed up again! It seems as if "only" always gets me!


Was it? I didn't even go back to look. :lol: That explains why it felt so familiar. No worries; everyone has their little things, I think.

DanInALionsDen
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby DanInALionsDen » Thu Jan 14, 2010 10:53 pm

You Gotta Have Faith wrote:
utilitarianjac wrote:
DanInALionsDen wrote:Someone ^^^ doesn't know what they're talking about. Your parents income matters. Need based aid is more common than merit based.


Very true.

And how can you have a point that is pointless?


No need to reply to you two... everyone else has already done that.


Pretty sure most of the replies have been some version of concurrence, we're reading different topics...

Need based aid is more common than merit based aid, especially among top schools. For my own purposes, I've been calling around to some schools fin. aid offices, asking some questions and this has been the consensus:

The FAFSA is used for the sole purpose of determining eligibility for Stafford loans. You are considered independent on the FAFSA if you are in graduate school, irrelevant of age, and all the law schools I've spoken to do not ask that you report your parents income information on the fafsa. As such, most people will qualify for Stafford loans.

However, many law schools require that students seeking financial assistance file a Need Access form. On this form they ask for both of your parents' financial information. Even schools that do not require you to fill out a Need Access form, have some institutional equivalent form that they require you to submit. This form, like the Need Access form, will ask for your parents' financial information. These forms, the Need Access and/or institutional financial aid forms are what schools use (at least all the schools I'm applying to) for the purposes of determining grant awards, etc.

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a male human
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby a male human » Fri Feb 12, 2010 8:12 pm

For schools that participate in Need Access (specifically Hastings and Davis), can I just submit the FAFSA only, instead of both FAFSA and Need Access? My EFC is around 15k because of the savings from my job, so I don't think I will qualify for any need-based aid.

avacado111
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby avacado111 » Fri Feb 12, 2010 8:14 pm

anyone know... does UVA give need based aid?

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swc65
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby swc65 » Sun Feb 14, 2010 12:14 am

avacado111 wrote:anyone know... does UVA give need based aid?



Aid is awarded according to two principles: need and merit. http://www.law.virginia.edu/lawweb/laww ... enDocument

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swc65
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby swc65 » Sun Feb 14, 2010 12:16 am

I would always apply. Even if you do not get a grant, you may qualify for loans with lower or subsidized interest. It is a headache to apply, but it may save you some money so why not?

Renzo
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby Renzo » Sun Feb 14, 2010 12:41 am

This thread contains mind-blowing levels of stupid. I can't even tell who is disagreeing with who. Every time I think I read a post disagreeing with someone, halfway through it turns out they agree!

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booboo
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby booboo » Sun Feb 14, 2010 1:04 am

Renzo wrote:This thread contains mind-blowing levels of stupid. I can't even tell who is disagreeing with who. Every time I think I read a post disagreeing with someone, halfway through it turns out they agree!


+1.

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a male human
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby a male human » Tue Feb 16, 2010 6:50 pm

a male human wrote:For schools that participate in Need Access (specifically Hastings and Davis), can I just submit the FAFSA only, instead of both FAFSA and Need Access? My EFC is around 15k because of the savings from my job, so I don't think I will qualify for any need-based aid.

If anyone was also wondering, the answer is "yes." I talked to Hastings, and the guy said Need Access isn't technically required, but it can't hurt (except the $30 fee) to try. If they only get my FAFSA, they will only consider me for federal aid. If anyone can confirm this, it would be appreciated.

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groundkontrol
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Re: At what point is it pointless to apply for need based aid?

Postby groundkontrol » Tue Feb 16, 2010 7:00 pm

Can someone tell me if financial aid offices take undergrad debt and loans into consideration? I owe a bunch for undergrad and grad school and combined with T14 tuition this is getting me worried.

Also, can we add in letters explaining things that might not be apparent from our tax returns such as an upcoming divorce or undergrad loans like I mentioned above?




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