How do I know if I am considered an independent student for financial aid purposes?
In order to be considered as an independent student for purposes of financial aid, you must be able to answer yes to at least one of the following questions (for the 2015-2016 aid year):
1. Were you born before January 1, 1992?
2. As of today, are you married? (Also answer "Yes" if you are separated but not divorced)
3. At the beginning of the 2015-2016 school year, will you be working on a masters or doctorate program (such as an MA, MBA, MD, JD, PhD, EdD, graduate certificate, etc)?
4. Are you currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training?
5. Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?*
6. Do you have children who will receive more than half of their support from you between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016?*
7. Do you have dependents (other than your children or spouse) who live with you and who receive more than half of their support from you, now and through June 30, 2016?*
8. 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?*
9. As determined by a court in your state of legal residence, are you or were you an emancipated minor?*
10. As determined by a court in your state of legal residence, are you or were you in legal guardianship?*
11. At any time on or after July 1, 2014, did your high school or school district homeless liaison determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless?*
12. At any time on or after July 1, 2014, 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?*
13. At any time on or after July 1, 2014, 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 risk of being homeless?*
Please note, for questions with an asterisk (*) next to them, you may be asked to provide documentation confirming the information in the question if you answer Yes. If you cannot answer Yes to at least one of the above questions, but you have extenuating circumstances which prevent you from having any contact whatsoever with either of your biological parents, please contact an Oserve Advocate.