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FAFSA: Dont live with either parents???

LynxxesLynxxes Posts: 7Registered User New Member
Okay, so this is my first year in college, and I've been living away from my father since roughly around 2/3 of the way through my senior year in HS. Now I'm finishing up my first semester of college, and am living with my best friend and his mom for the majority of the week, and staying with my GF the rest of the time.

My father doesn't want to help pay for college, but I still had to put his financial info on my FAFSA, which sucked, cause he made like 70,000 dollars that year, leaving my with an unusably high EFC.

Since I don't live with him, how do I go about separating myself from him, in the sense that I don't have to put his info on my FAFSA? I'm 18, btw. I read somewhere that I have to keep putting his info on there til I'm 26? That seems a little ridiculous, as he doesn't really financially support me in any way, shape, or form (minus the occasional holiday check).

Would I be able to put my friends mom on there? She makes considerably less money then my dad, so it would be a godsend if I could--but alas, I'm not sure if I can. She definitely supports me more than he does; she pays the bills, buys the food, and lets me stay here for free.

Thanks in advance for all the help :)
Post edited by Lynxxes on
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Replies to: FAFSA: Dont live with either parents???

  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Posts: 14,999Registered User Senior Member
    I go about separating myself from him, in the sense that I don't have to put his info on my FAFSA? I'm 18, btw.
    You can't. You have to report one of your parents on FAFSA.
    I read somewhere that I have to keep putting his info on there til I'm 26?
    It's 24. Or if you are married, have a dependent of your own that you support, are a veteran.
    Would I be able to put my friends mom on there?
    No.
  • LynxxesLynxxes Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    Can I report my Mom? I haven't lived with her in a while, though she is significantly poorer than my dad, so I would get much more aid.
  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Posts: 14,999Registered User Senior Member
    The rules are that you report the parent you lived with the most. If you did not live with either more than the other then the one who provided the most support. If neither provided more support then the one with the higher income.

    So if you lived with Mom more you can report her. (go spend a couple of nights with her, keep you honest and make her happy).
  • LynxxesLynxxes Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    Well, I mean, I lived with her my entire life until I way 11. That counts, yeah?
  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Posts: 14,999Registered User Senior Member
    No. For FAFSA it is who you lived with more in the past year.
  • LynxxesLynxxes Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    Neither. I've lived with Neither of them over the past year, and both of them live thousands of miles away from me?

    I guess I'll just have to go stay with my Mom for a day or two, yeah? :)
  • mom2collegekidsmom2collegekids Posts: 62,476Registered User Senior Member
    ^^^

    And people don't believe me when I say people sometimes manipulate the system to report the lower income parent on FAFSA.
  • 2collegewego2collegewego Posts: 2,583Registered User Senior Member
    Didn't you fill out a FAFSA for this year? You can't just switch who you write that you lived with. What address did your high school use for senior year?
  • thumper1thumper1 Posts: 37,029Registered User Senior Member
    Actually if the student lives with a different parent more of the time in 2010 than in 2009, they CAN change that for this year's FAFSA. So..if this student lives with mom more in 2010, then he/she can list mom as the custodial parent. BUT really...be prepared to verify this if asked to do so.
  • LynxxesLynxxes Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    And people don't believe me when I say people sometimes manipulate the system to report the lower income parent on FAFSA.

    Is there something wrong with that? My father doesn't have--and never will have--anything to do with my education, financially. He is quite stubborn, and is holding his ground with fierce rigidness. Is it fair to me, the student, that I get no help on either side because of another person's stance? This "system" ignores personal differences amongst family members, leaving kids like me--kids who just can't afford college without financial aid--to slip through the cracks.

    And I understand that I can't change it now; I was being hopeful. This is now more of an inquisition for next years FAFSA.
  • 2bizee2bizee Posts: 499Registered User Member
    Check with your school's FA office. They will tell you their criteria. It may mean you change your home address to your mom's, get a driver's license in her state, go live with her for the summer, get a job out there (wherever she lives) and get HER to list you as dependent on income taxes. Tell your dad it's only fair, he would get a few hundred dollars deduction, but it could mean thousands in FA to you. Even if you can't make it start til the next year, it's still worth it.

    Good Luck
  • LynxxesLynxxes Posts: 7Registered User New Member
    Thanks 2bizee, but I have a job / established life here, and I cant just uproot for the summer and live with her. I mean, my Mom's bordering on welfare right now, and my dad makes 70,000+ a year. It would really help me if there was an easier way to claim my Mom, instead of my Dad. If not, then I guess I just have to keep taking out loans / apply for scholarships.
  • thumper1thumper1 Posts: 37,029Registered User Senior Member
    get HER to list you as dependent on income taxes.

    Dependency on tax returns has no bearing on custodial parent status for FAFSA. If the student lives with the mom more than half the time...the MOM is the custodial parent...even IF the dad puts the kiddo on his tax return because Dad is providing more than 1/2 the support.
  • sk8rmomsk8rmom Posts: 5,746Registered User Senior Member
    It sounds like you have lived with your dad during 2010, so he's going to be your parent for FAFSA purposes for the 11/12 academic year. If you don't live with him at all during 2011 and you do at least go visit your Mom for a few days, it does seem that she would then become your FAFSA parent.

    The exact rule is as follows:

    "If your parents are divorced (or separated—see below for more information), answer the questions about the parent you lived with more during the 12 months preceding the date you complete the FAFSA. If you did not live with one parent more than the other, give answers about the parent who provided more financial support during the 12 months preceding the date you complete the FAFSA, or during the most recent year that you actually received support from a parent."

    It doesn't say anything about choosing the higher income parent, only the parent you lived with more or (if neither), the one who last provided more financial support.
  • swimcatsmomswimcatsmom Posts: 14,999Registered User Senior Member
    ^^ agree. I missed that the OP had lived with his Dad for part of 2010. I was thinking he was a year further into college than he is. So for 2011-2012 it does sound like the dad would have to be reported.
    It doesn't say anything about choosing the higher income parent, only the parent you lived with more or (if neither), the one who last provided more financial support.
    Interesting, I have read here so often that that is the rule that I just thought it was. Wonder where that came from.
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