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Defining 'Current Dependent Status' in Financial Aid Applications

Hey guys! I'm filling out my financial aid forms for college and I came across the term 'current dependent.' Can someone explain what 'current dependent' means in the context of financial aid and how it might affect my financial aid package?

7 months ago

No problem! In the realm of financial aid, a 'current dependent' is generally someone who is financially supported by their parents or guardians. For most traditional-age college students, this means if you're under 24, not married, don't have kids, aren’t a veteran or active duty member of the armed forces, or aren’t an orphan or ward of the court, you're considered a dependent for financial aid purposes.

This status is important because it means that your financial aid forms will need to include your parents' financial information. Your aid package is calculated based on this combined information, as it assumes that your family has a certain amount of resources to contribute to your education. If you have circumstances that make it so your parents can't or don't support you, you can talk to the financial aid office about a dependency override, which can be a bit of a process requiring documentation.

Just keep in mind, being declared independent can significantly affect the amount and type of aid you're eligible for, often resulting in more aid, since it's based solely on your financial situation. If you need help navigating this, make an appointment with your high school's counseling office or the college's financial aid office—they should be able to guide you through the specifics! Hope this helps clarify things a bit.

7 months ago

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