Generally, undergraduate students are considered dependents of their legal (biological, adoptive, or otherwise determined by the state) parent(s) for the purposes of calculating financial aid eligibility (federal, state, and institutional) and parental information must be provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). An undergraduate student's dependency status for tax filing purposes is not necessarily reflective of their dependency status for financial aid.
Under very limited circumstances, undergraduate students may qualify to have a change made to their dependency status for the purpose of determining financial aid eligibility. Documented cases of abuse, neglect, incarceration, abandonment by the parents, etc. will be considered. Students should submit the Dependency Change Request along with supporting documentation to Student Financial Aid & Scholarships.
- 2019-2020 Dependency Change Request
- 2020-2021 Dependency Change Request Form will be available January 6, 2020.
The following will NOT be considered valid reasons for a dependency change:
- Parent's refusal to pay for college
- Parent's refusal to provide information for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
- Parent's inability to claim student as a dependent for income tax purposes
- Student's ability to demonstrate self-sufficiency
In addition, students who can answer "yes" to any of the following questions are considered independent of their parents for the purposes of calculating financial aid:
- 24 years of age (or older)
- Pursuing a master's or doctorate degree
- Active duty military
- Support dependent children
- Support dependents (other than children or spouse) who live with you
- In foster care, orphan (both parents deceased), or dependent or ward of the court prior to age 13
- Emancipated minor (as determined by court in state of legal residence)
- In legal guardianship (as determined by court in state of legal residence)
- In the last year, determined to be unaccompanied youth who is homeless or self-supporting and at risk of becoming homeless