Dependency Information

If you answered "yes" to certain dependency questions on your FAFSA, you will also need to provide documents to verify these data elements entered on your FAFSA even if you were not selected by CPS or Columbia Central for the verification process.

If you must submit dependency documentation, you will receive an email to your student email. 

View your Student Aid Report (SAR) online at fafsa.gov by clicking on "View Processed Information." 

FAFSA

If you answered yes to any of the below questions, you must submit the corresponding documentation. 

If, after viewing your SAR, you determine that you answered yes to any of these questions in error, you should make a correction to your SAR and change your answer to no. 

If you are unable to provide documentation for any of these questions, or if you are unable to provide documentation but feel you have extenuating circumstances (abusive or unsafe home environment, homeless or at risk of homelessness without an official determination, etc.), please call us at 312-369-7140 to speak with a representative.

  • Question 53

    At any time since you turned 13, were both of your parents deceased, were you in foster care, or were you a dependent or ward of the court? 

    Required documentation: submit a copy of the death certificates for both of your parents; or submit a copy of official court documentation (signed or sealed by judge) that confirms your ward of the court or foster care status and the effective dates(s).

  • Question 54

    Are you or were you an emancipated minor as determined by a court in your state of legal residence?

    Required documentation: submit a copy of your official emancipated minor judgment (signed or sealed by judge) from your state of legal residence as listed on the FAFSA; or submit a copy of your official emancipated minor judgment (signed or sealed by judge) from your state of legal residence at the time the decision was made. 

  • Question 55

    Are you or were you in legal guardianship as determined by a court in your state of legal residence?

    Note: for this question, the definition of legal guardianship does not include your parents, even if they were appointed by a court to be your guardian. You are also not considered a legal guardian of yourself. If your court documents say "custody" and not "guardianship," please contact Columbia Central to speak with a representative prior to submitting your documents.

    Required documentation: submit a copy of the official legal guardianship judgment (signed and sealed by judge) from your state of legal residence as listed on the FAFSA; or submit a copy of the official legal guardianship judgment (signed or sealed by judge) from your state of legal residence at the time the decision was made.

  • Question 56

    For 2019-20:

    At any time on or after July 1, 2018, did your high school or school district homeless liaison determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?

    Required documentation: submit a signed letter on official letterhead from your high school or school district homeless liaison determining you to be an unaccompanied youth who was homeless on or after July 1, 2018.

    For 2018-19:

    At any time on or after July 1, 2017, did your high school or school district homeless liaison determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?

    Required documentation: submit a signed letter on official letterhead from your high school or school district homeless liaison determining you to be an unaccompanied youth who was homeless on or after July 1, 2017.

     

     

  • Question 57

    For 2019-20:

    At any time on or after July 1, 2018, did the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?

    Required documentation: submit a signed letter on official letterhead from the director of an emergency or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determining you to be an unaccompanied youth who was homeless on or after July 1, 2018. 

    For 2018-19:

    At any time on or after July 1, 2017, did the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?

    Required documentation: submit a signed letter on official letterhead from the director of an emergency or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determining you to be an unaccompanied youth who was homeless on or after July 1, 2017. 

     

  • Question 58

    For 2019-20:

    At any time on or after July 1, 2018, did the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or were self-supporting and at the risk of being homeless?

    Required documentation: submit a signed letter on official letterhead from the director of a runaway or a homeless youth center or transitional living program determining you to be homeless or self-supporting and at risk of being homeless on or after July 1, 2018.

    For 2018-19:

    At any time on or after July 1, 2017, did the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or were self-supporting and at the risk of being homeless?

    Required documentation: submit a signed letter on official letterhead from the director of a runaway or a homeless youth center or transitional living program determining you to be homeless or self-supporting and at risk of being homeless on or after July 1, 2017.

     

Changes to dependency status

Information for dependent students

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 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA):

 

  • 2019-20
    • Were you born before January 1, 1996?
    • Will you be enrolled in a master's or doctorate program (beyond a bachelor's degree) at the beginning of the 2019-20 school year? 
    • Were you married the day you completed your initial FAFSA?
    • Do you have children that you support financially with more than half of your income?
    • Do you have dependents (other than your children or spouse) who live with you and that you support financially with more than half of your income, between July 1 of the previous year and June 30 of the current year?
    • Are you currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training?
    • Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?
    • At any time since you turned age 13, were both your parents deceased, were you in foster care, or were you a dependent or ward of the court?
    • Are you or were you an emancipated minor as determined by a court in your legal state of residence?
    • Are you or were you in legal guardianship as determined by a court in your legal state of residence?
    • At any time did your high school homeless liaison determine that you were homeless?

    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 your student email if this is the case.

    Homeless Determination

    "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.

    At any time after July 1, 2018, are you or were you at risk of being homeless?

    If you are or were at risk of being homeless, in order to answer 'YES' to this question 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 the question 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 Columbia Central counselor. If, after meeting with us, 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.

  • 2018-19
    • Were you born before January 1, 1995?
    • Will you be enrolled in a master's or doctorate program (beyond a bachelor's degree) at the beginning of the  2018-19 school year? 
    • Were you married the day you completed your initial FAFSA?
    • Do you have children that you support financially with more than half of your income?
    • Do you have dependents (other than your children or spouse) who live with you and that you support financially with more than half of your income, between July 1 of the previous year and June 30 of the current year?
    • Are you currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training?
    • Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?
    • At any time since you turned age 13, were both your parents deceased, were you in foster care, or were you a dependent or ward of the court?
    • Are you or were you an emancipated minor as determined by a court in your legal state of residence?
    • Are you or were you in legal guardianship as determined by a court in your legal state of residence?
    • At any time did your high school homeless liaison determine that you were homeless?

    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 your student email if this is the case.

    Homeless Determination

    "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.

    At any time after July 1, 2017, are you or were you at risk of being homeless?

    If you are or were at risk of being homeless, in order to answer 'YES' to this question 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 the question 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 Columbia Central counselor. If, after meeting with us, 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.

Academic Dates and Deadlines