We touched on FAFSA changes for families with multiple children in college in our July blogpost. One of the other largest changes for next year’s financial aid calculations is for divorced households.
This change is in relation to the parent that files the FAFSA. Currently, the parent that completes the form is the custodial parent whom the student lives with the majority of the time. For families where the parent that the student lives with most often doesn’t have as high of an income as the other parent, this has opened the door to more financial aid.
How will this change for the FAFSA filed by next year’s high school seniors?
The parent responsible for filing the FAFSA will be the parent that provides the most financial support irrespective of who the student lives with for most of their time.
For families that have benefited from the previous rules, this may cause a significant reduction or elimination of financial aid for future years.
An important note: The FAFSA is not the only form used to calculate financial aid. Many private schools (Think BU, BC --> Full list here) also require a more invasive financial aid form called the CSS Profile that will include information from both parents regardless of a divorce.
So if the child is considering a school that requires the CSS Profile, they will make note of both parents income regardless of what is listed on the FAFSA.
Have questions about how these upcoming FAFSA changes may affect your family? Feel free to reach out.
All the best,
Andrew Holmes, Certified College Planning Specialist™
Check out my recent whitepaper: 5 College Planning Mistakes to Avoid
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