FAQs | Financial Aid
My parents don’t help me pay for college and I don’t receive any support from them. Do I have to include their financial information on the FAFSA?
In order to file as an independent student (not include parent information) you must meet at least one of the following qualifications: 24 years of age, married, have a dependent who you provide at least 51% of their support, be a veteran or considered and orphan or ward of the court.
No. Federal guidelines state if you are not living with the child you are not providing at least 51% of that child’s care.
No. Federal guidelines state if you are living with your parents you are not paying at least 51% of that child’s care.
The maximum award for the 2013-14 (July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014) is $5,645. The maximum can change each award year and depends on program funding. The amount you get, though, will depend not only on your financial need but also your status as a full-time or part-time student.
Pell Grant funds will be applied to your school costs (i.e. tuition, fees, room and meal plan).
You'll be paid by the hour. No FWS student may be paid by commission or fee. Your school will pay you directly Bi-weekly. Wages for the program is the current federal minimum wage. The amount you earn can't exceed your total FWS award.
If you work on campus, you'll work for your school. If you work off campus, your employer will usually be a private nonprofit organization or a public agency.
You must fill out a FAFSA. After your FAFSA is processed, your school will review the results and will inform you about your loan eligibility. You also will have to sign a promissory note, a binding legal document that lists the conditions under which you're borrowing and the terms under which you agree to repay your loan.
If you're attending school at least half time, you have nine months after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time status before you must begin repayment of Perkins Loans. Stafford Loans will enter repayment six months after the aforementioned criteria. This is called "grace period."
You'll be paid through your school. Your loan money must first be applied to pay for tuition and fees, room and board, and other school charges. If loan money remains, you'll receive the funds by check.
The interest rate is fixed at 4.5% for a subsidized Stafford Loan for 2010-11, 3.4% for 2011-12. Unsubsidized Stafford Loans have a fixed 6.8% interest rate.
A loan origination fee of 1% will be deducted, with an up-front interest rebate (repayment incentive) of 0.5%.
You’ll repay your Direct Stafford Loan to the U.S. Department of Education. You will receive more detailed information on your repayment options during entrance and exit counseling sessions your school will provide.
Yes, but only under a few circumstances. Your loan can’t be canceled because you didn’t complete the program of study at the school (unless you couldn’t complete the program for a valid reason—the school closed, for example), or because you didn’t like the school or the program of study, or you didn’t obtain employment after completing the program of study.
For a Direct PLUS Loan you must complete the FAFSA at www.fafsa.ed.gov. The next step is for your parents to complete the Federal PLUS Request form and the PLUS MPN (Master Promissory Note). Click here for further information.
The yearly limit on a Direct PLUS Loan is equal to your cost of attendance minus any other financial aid you receive. If your cost of attendance is $14,000, for example, and you receive $5,500 in other financial aid, your parents can borrow up to $8,500.
The U.S. Department of Education will send the Direct PLUS Loan funds to your school. The funds will first be applied to your tuition, fees, room and board, and other school charges. If any loan funds remain, the student will receive the amount as a check. Any remaining loan funds must be used for your education expenses.
The Direct PLUS Loans interest rates are is a fixed 7.9%. Interest is charged on a Direct PLUS Loan from the date of the first disbursement until the loan is paid in full.
A loan origination fee of 4% will be deducted, with an up-front interest rebate (repayment incentive) of 1.5%.
The first payment is due within 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed. There is no grace period for these loans. Interest begins to accrue at the time the first disbursement is made. Your parents must begin repaying both principal and interest while you're in school. Parents may contact the Direct Loan Servicing Center to request that payment be delayed while you are enrolled at least half-time and during the 6-month period after you graduate or are no longer enrolled at least half-time.
They'll repay a Direct PLUS Loan to the U.S. Department of Education.
Yes, under certain circumstances, your parents can receive a deferment on their loans.
If they temporarily can’t meet the repayment schedule, they can also receive forbearance on their loan, as long as it isn’t in default. During forbearance, their payments are postponed or reduced.
Generally, the conditions for eligibility and procedures for requesting a deferment or forbearance apply to both Direct Stafford Loans and Direct PLUS Loans. However, since all Direct PLUS Loans are unsubsidized, your parents will be charged interest during periods of deferment or forbearance. If they don’t pay the interest as it accrues, it will be capitalized (that is, added to the principal amount of the loan, and additional interest will be based on that higher amount).
Yes, under certain conditions. A discharge (cancellation) releases your parents from all obligation to repay the loan.
Your parents’ Direct PLUS Loan can’t be canceled for these reasons: You didn’t complete your program of study at your school (unless you couldn’t complete the program for a valid reason—because the school closed, for example), you didn’t like the school or the program of study, or you didn’t obtain employment after completing the program of study.
For more information about loan discharge or repayment, your parents should contact the Direct Loan Servicing Center.