Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

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thecynic69
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Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby thecynic69 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:28 pm

Hi All,

I cannot get either of my parents to fill out the financial aid forms for Yale Law School. Regrettably, I think this is a fairly common problem, but I am having trouble getting good search results since there are a whole lot of "I don't know" type responses to these queries, as well as off topic posts (due to the fact that financial aid related search terms turn up a lot of stuff).

A little bit of background. I am a deferred student who will start at Yale Law this fall. In previous years, I have been exempt from the non-custodial parent requirement, as I have had no contact with my mom since 1999 (she did not pay child support--literally, no contact). I was "raised" by my father, and he was kind enough to fill out my financial aid forms (as the custodial parent) while I was an undergrad, and even last year when I was first applying to Yale; however, my father has since moved out of the country, and we are no longer in touch. To be honest, we were never really close, and our relationship soured when, last year, he failed to fill out his portion of the financial aid forms at Harvard Law School (as a result, I likely would not have been able to get finaid at Harvard--it ended up being a moot point, however, as I chose to attend Yale).

Now, I am not sure what to do. I have five days before the FAFSA/NeedAccess deadlines, and I am not even able to contact my dad (I don't have a phone number or an address, and he is not responding to emails at the email address I have on file for him). It is entirely possible that he will come through last minute and fill out the forms/give me his tax info so I can fill out the forms, but I am way past the point of just sitting and waiting. Do I satisfy the "estrangement" or "independent status" requirements for NeedAccess/FAFSA? How do I even begin to tell Yale that not one, but now both of my parents are unwilling to fill out my financial aid forms? Will Yale be receptive, or am I just going to be putting someone over there in the awkward position of having to tell me that I am screwed?

Any help/advice would be appreciated. I am increasingly freaking out with every minute that passes.
Last edited by thecynic69 on Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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sambeber
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby sambeber » Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:31 pm

Call Yale and ask.

thecynic69
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby thecynic69 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:41 pm

Will do so on Monday. Wouldn't mind some info to calm my nerves until then...

Cinderella
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby Cinderella » Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:43 pm

This sounds like textbook estrangement and/or independent status to me. No way you're screwed dude; just call Yale, explain it, and figure exactly how to file it without your parents.

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TommyK
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby TommyK » Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:44 pm

sambeber wrote:Call Yale and ask.


+1.

Holy shit... Sorry, bro. On the upside, congrats on Yale. TLS is good with a lot of types of questions; this is not one of them that I would trust crowdsourcing information on....

Good luck.

To calm your nerves - you'll be fine. This won't affect you. Given how much Yale loves compelling personal stories, this can't be the first time they've come across a similar situation.

03121202698008
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby 03121202698008 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:49 pm

I had this problem with my dad. I just put Unknown/no contact under his address and left it all blank. Michigan (which required the info at the time) didn't seem to care. Then again, I wasn't getting need aid so it didn't really matter.

thecynic69
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby thecynic69 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:57 pm

Thanks, everyone seems fairly positive about this, which helps. When I google searched a bit, all I found was info on finaid for undergrads, and the gist of the information was "responsibility for paying for educations rests primarily with parents; if parents refuse to contribute money they are able to contribute, or refuse to fill out the FAFSA, you are not eligible for federal aid, and you are likely not eligible for grants from your school". Glad to hear this might not be the case for law school, it will make my wait this weekend less difficult.

Geist13
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby Geist13 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:11 pm

Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?

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sunynp
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby sunynp » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:15 pm

If I were you I would try to pull together all the FAFSA information you have from undergrad and from the financial aid form you Dad filled out for Yale before. You might be able to use that as an estimate if you have to have something. I'm not sure if you can still access the forms online, maybe you have a hard copy. I would go over the FAFSA carefully before you call Yale so you can ask about specific provisions. There might be something you know, possibly you can use your Dad's old address if you don't have a current one. Those are the kind of questions you need to ask. I am pretty sure you have to file something with FAFSA, even if it is blank or filled with stuff like not available.

I'm sorry you aren't in touch with your parents. But congrats on your acceptances, it is a huge accomplishment. I'm sure Yale will be able to advise you.

PS. I know that the FAFSA this year has some way to import information from tax forms, but I don't know how that works.

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Kikero
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby Kikero » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:17 pm

Geist13 wrote:Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?


Depends on the school. While filling out the FAFSA online, there is an option you can select that is something along the lines of "My school doesn't require parental information."

thecynic69
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby thecynic69 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:19 pm

Geist13 wrote:Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?


Most schools still require parent info. While someone posts below that you can get around providing this on the FAFSA, you must provide it on the NeedAccess form (unless you write both parents are deceased). Being older shouldn't matter--if you are under 30, I think, then NeedAccess requires parent info.

thecynic69
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby thecynic69 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:20 pm

Kikero wrote:
Geist13 wrote:Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?


Depends on the school. While filling out the FAFSA online, there is an option you can select that is something along the lines of "My school doesn't require parental information."


For the FAFSA, yes, but not for NeedAccess.

thecynic69
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby thecynic69 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:21 pm

sunynp wrote:If I were you I would try to pull together all the FAFSA information you have from undergrad and from the financial aid form you Dad filled out for Yale before. You might be able to use that as an estimate if you have to have something. I'm not sure if you can still access the forms online, maybe you have a hard copy. I would go over the FAFSA carefully before you call Yale so you can ask about specific provisions. There might be something you know, possibly you can use your Dad's old address if you don't have a current one. Those are the kind of questions you need to ask. I am pretty sure you have to file something with FAFSA, even if it is blank or filled with stuff like not available.

I'm sorry you aren't in touch with your parents. But congrats on your acceptances, it is a huge accomplishment. I'm sure Yale will be able to advise you.

PS. I know that the FAFSA this year has some way to import information from tax forms, but I don't know how that works.


Could anyone else weigh in on this, as a method of last resort? I assume Yale will know what to do when I call on Monday, but is this a reasonable course of action under any circumstance? I don't know if my dad will have to file taxes in the U.S., but if he does, and the numbers I give on the FAFSA etc. do not agree with the numbers on his tax forms, wouldn't I be in some pretty big trouble?

03121202698008
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby 03121202698008 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:24 pm

thecynic69 wrote:
sunynp wrote:If I were you I would try to pull together all the FAFSA information you have from undergrad and from the financial aid form you Dad filled out for Yale before. You might be able to use that as an estimate if you have to have something. I'm not sure if you can still access the forms online, maybe you have a hard copy. I would go over the FAFSA carefully before you call Yale so you can ask about specific provisions. There might be something you know, possibly you can use your Dad's old address if you don't have a current one. Those are the kind of questions you need to ask. I am pretty sure you have to file something with FAFSA, even if it is blank or filled with stuff like not available.

I'm sorry you aren't in touch with your parents. But congrats on your acceptances, it is a huge accomplishment. I'm sure Yale will be able to advise you.

PS. I know that the FAFSA this year has some way to import information from tax forms, but I don't know how that works.


Could anyone else weigh in on this, as a method of last resort? I assume Yale will know what to do when I call on Monday, but is this a reasonable course of action under any circumstance? I don't know if my dad will have to file taxes in the U.S., but if he does, and the numbers I give on the FAFSA etc. do not agree with the numbers on his tax forms, wouldn't I be in some pretty big trouble?


Yes. You can't just guesstimate nor can you obtain his returns. My guess is Yale has a solution. It's their prerogative after all. Nothing requires them to collect parental info, unlike for undergrads.

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sunynp
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby sunynp » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:29 pm

I would at least get the information that you have together. It is better than nothing. Does Yale have the form he filled out from last year?

thecynic69
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby thecynic69 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:35 pm

sunynp wrote:I would at least get the information that you have together. It is better than nothing. Does Yale have the form he filled out from last year?


Yup, not a terrible idea. It might do them good to know that he has no money anyway. It isn't like my financial position changes with him in the mix.

Geneva
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby Geneva » Sat Mar 10, 2012 7:11 pm

thecynic69 wrote:
Geist13 wrote:Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?


Most schools still require parent info. While someone posts below that you can get around providing this on the FAFSA, you must provide it on the NeedAccess form (unless you write both parents are deceased). Being older shouldn't matter--if you are under 30, I think, then NeedAccess requires parent info.


Even if parents contributed $0 to my college education and have not given me financial assistance of any kind since I was in high school? This seems a bit crazy bc my dad's salary (which I imagine is 100K+) and property ownership has no bearing on my ability to pay for school.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby Tiago Splitter » Sat Mar 10, 2012 7:12 pm

Geneva wrote:
thecynic69 wrote:
Geist13 wrote:Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?


Most schools still require parent info. While someone posts below that you can get around providing this on the FAFSA, you must provide it on the NeedAccess form (unless you write both parents are deceased). Being older shouldn't matter--if you are under 30, I think, then NeedAccess requires parent info.


Even if parents contributed $0 to my college education and have not given me financial assistance of any kind since I was in high school? This seems a bit crazy bc my dad's salary (which I imagine is 100K+) and property ownership has no bearing on my ability to pay for school.


Sucks, but that's the way it is.

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Kikero
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby Kikero » Sat Mar 10, 2012 7:18 pm

thecynic69 wrote:
Kikero wrote:
Geist13 wrote:Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?


Depends on the school. While filling out the FAFSA online, there is an option you can select that is something along the lines of "My school doesn't require parental information."


For the FAFSA, yes, but not for NeedAccess.


I wasn't asked for any parental information by NeedAccess other than the amount they contributed to my last year of undergrad education. I believe NeedAccess asks different questions based on what schools you're applying to, so I think it is something that you could straighten out with Yale.

09042014
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby 09042014 » Sat Mar 10, 2012 7:26 pm

Geneva wrote:
thecynic69 wrote:
Geist13 wrote:Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?


Most schools still require parent info. While someone posts below that you can get around providing this on the FAFSA, you must provide it on the NeedAccess form (unless you write both parents are deceased). Being older shouldn't matter--if you are under 30, I think, then NeedAccess requires parent info.


Even if parents contributed $0 to my college education and have not given me financial assistance of any kind since I was in high school? This seems a bit crazy bc my dad's salary (which I imagine is 100K+) and property ownership has no bearing on my ability to pay for school.


Well nobody can really pay for law school by themselves unless they are independently wealthy. Which is why only a few schools actually give need based aid. We'd all need it.

PolySuyGuy
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby PolySuyGuy » Tue Mar 13, 2012 1:51 pm

thecynic69 wrote:Hi All,

I cannot get either of my parents to fill out the financial aid forms for Yale Law School. Regrettably, I think this is a fairly common problem, but I am having trouble getting good search results since there are a whole lot of "I don't know" type responses to these queries, as well as off topic posts (due to the fact that financial aid related search terms turn up a lot of stuff).

A little bit of background. I am a deferred student who will start at Yale Law this fall. In previous years, I have been exempt from the non-custodial parent requirement, as I have had no contact with my mom since 1999 (she did not pay child support--literally, no contact). I was "raised" by my father, and he was kind enough to fill out my financial aid forms (as the custodial parent) while I was an undergrad, and even last year when I was first applying to Yale; however, my father has since moved out of the country, and we are no longer in touch. To be honest, we were never really close, and our relationship soured when, last year, he failed to fill out his portion of the financial aid forms at Harvard Law School (as a result, I likely would not have been able to get finaid at Harvard--it ended up being a moot point, however, as I chose to attend Yale).

Now, I am not sure what to do. I have five days before the FAFSA/NeedAccess deadlines, and I am not even able to contact my dad (I don't have a phone number or an address, and he is not responding to emails at the email address I have on file for him). It is entirely possible that he will come through last minute and fill out the forms/give me his tax info so I can fill out the forms, but I am way past the point of just sitting and waiting. Do I satisfy the "estrangement" or "independent status" requirements for NeedAccess/FAFSA? How do I even begin to tell Yale that not one, but now both of my parents are unwilling to fill out my financial aid forms? Will Yale be receptive, or am I just going to be putting someone over there in the awkward position of having to tell me that I am screwed?

Any help/advice would be appreciated. I am increasingly freaking out with every minute that passes.



Let us know when you find out. Nobody seems to have a good answer.

Geneva
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby Geneva » Tue Mar 13, 2012 8:08 pm

PolySuyGuy wrote:
thecynic69 wrote:Hi All,

I cannot get either of my parents to fill out the financial aid forms for Yale Law School. Regrettably, I think this is a fairly common problem, but I am having trouble getting good search results since there are a whole lot of "I don't know" type responses to these queries, as well as off topic posts (due to the fact that financial aid related search terms turn up a lot of stuff).

A little bit of background. I am a deferred student who will start at Yale Law this fall. In previous years, I have been exempt from the non-custodial parent requirement, as I have had no contact with my mom since 1999 (she did not pay child support--literally, no contact). I was "raised" by my father, and he was kind enough to fill out my financial aid forms (as the custodial parent) while I was an undergrad, and even last year when I was first applying to Yale; however, my father has since moved out of the country, and we are no longer in touch. To be honest, we were never really close, and our relationship soured when, last year, he failed to fill out his portion of the financial aid forms at Harvard Law School (as a result, I likely would not have been able to get finaid at Harvard--it ended up being a moot point, however, as I chose to attend Yale).

Now, I am not sure what to do. I have five days before the FAFSA/NeedAccess deadlines, and I am not even able to contact my dad (I don't have a phone number or an address, and he is not responding to emails at the email address I have on file for him). It is entirely possible that he will come through last minute and fill out the forms/give me his tax info so I can fill out the forms, but I am way past the point of just sitting and waiting. Do I satisfy the "estrangement" or "independent status" requirements for NeedAccess/FAFSA? How do I even begin to tell Yale that not one, but now both of my parents are unwilling to fill out my financial aid forms? Will Yale be receptive, or am I just going to be putting someone over there in the awkward position of having to tell me that I am screwed?

Any help/advice would be appreciated. I am increasingly freaking out with every minute that passes.



Let us know when you find out. Nobody seems to have a good answer.

ditto. good lluck!

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sunynp
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby sunynp » Thu Mar 15, 2012 7:46 pm

bump - do you mind sharing whatever information you have?

der_saeufer
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby der_saeufer » Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:33 am

Kikero wrote:
thecynic69 wrote:
Kikero wrote:
Geist13 wrote:Do graduate students have to put parental information? I'm 90% positive I never gave mine, but maybe that's because I'm a little older. But I seriously thought graduate students didn't have to provide parental info any more.

edit: is this for FAFSA or forms specific to Yale?


Depends on the school. While filling out the FAFSA online, there is an option you can select that is something along the lines of "My school doesn't require parental information."


For the FAFSA, yes, but not for NeedAccess.


I wasn't asked for any parental information by NeedAccess other than the amount they contributed to my last year of undergrad education. I believe NeedAccess asks different questions based on what schools you're applying to, so I think it is something that you could straighten out with Yale.


TITCR.

Some schools want parents' info from all applicants, but others only want it from applicants under a certain age (often 25 or 30), and still others never ask for parental information. It's never required for Federal aid for graduate or professional students, but schools can ask for whatever they want in determining how to handle their own aid funds.

NeedAccess will only ask for it if your school requires it for students of your age, e.g. I'm over 25 so when I filled it out for Vandy it didn't ask, but I'm under 30 so it did ask for UCLA.

How a school handles parents who can't be contacted or refuse to provide their information is completely up to that school. The only person who can answer a question about Yale is a financial aid officer at Yale.

thecynic69
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Re: Parents Refuse to Fill out Fafsa

Postby thecynic69 » Wed Apr 04, 2012 10:42 am

Sorry for the delay in responding!

My dad came through at the last minute, and so I honestly do not know the answer either. Truth is I completely wussed out and didn't want to call Yale to tell them i couldn't get either parent to do it...some combination of feeling like they would think I was trying to scheme them/general embarrassment about the situation.

Sorry I can't be of more help!




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