Dependent Students must report their parent's income and assets as well as their own when applying for federal financial aid. The U.S. Department of Education automatically considers you dependent if you answer ‘NO’ to all of the following questions on your 2015-16 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA):
If you were able to answer ‘YES’ to any of these questions you are considered an Independent student. Independent Students only report their own income and assets (and those of a spouse, if married) when applying for federal financial aid. Please note certain circumstances require you to submit corresponding documents for our review. You will be notified by loop email if this is the case.
Homeless means lacking fixed, regular and adequate housing, which includes living in shelters, motels or cars, or temporarily living with other people because you have nowhere else to go.
Unaccompanied means you are not living in the physical custody of your parent or guardian.
If you are or were at risk of being homeless, in order to answer 'YES' to these questions you must have a determination by a high school or school district homeless liaison, a director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, or the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program.
If you answered 'NO' to all of the questions above but have unusual circumstances, a dependency override may occur. If you believe you have an unusual circumstance, you should discuss your situation with a consultant. If, after meeting with an SFS Consultant, it is determined that a dependency override should be pursued, your consultant will then inform you of what documentation will be necessary to document your situation.