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Independent Student making over 31,000 per year

sunnysnowysunnysnowy Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
I'm a 19 yr old Freshman at Brown. I work full time and take 15 hours as well. I make ~31,000 per year working full time. I carry my own health insurance, dental and even retirement plan. My parents do not support me. I have to fill out taxes for my own income. My parents do not claim me on their taxes because I support myself. My parents (for personal reasons) are not supporting me next year and are not putting my on their taxes.
I would like to fill out my Fafsa as independent since I am independent but everything I have read says that is not allowed for Brown and my parents are still obligated to pay for me because they make ~140,000 per year....
Any tips?

Replies to: Independent Student making over 31,000 per year

  • HRSMomHRSMom Registered User Posts: 4,632 Senior Member
    Those are the rules. Period. The fact that they don't want to pay is irrelevant. They are not obligated to pay. You are obligated to use their income to figure your financial aid though. And your income too.

    There are very very limited circumstances where they will override this. Usually involving abuse or abandonment, would depend on why you support yourself).

    You could wait until you are 24...but until then, you are not independent for FA purposes.
  • ciervociervo Registered User Posts: 892 Member
    Is this an actual situation or a hypothetical one? Students at Brown do not take "15 hours" of classes, they usually take 4 courses which is also called 4 credits.
  • TomSrOfBostonTomSrOfBoston Registered User Posts: 14,271 Senior Member
    ...and you work full time while attending an Ivy League college?
  • sunnysnowysunnysnowy Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    This is an actual situation. I'm taking five classes (yes most take 4 but I'm taking five) and yes, I am working full time while taking a full load. There is no benefit to me to make up a hypothetical.
  • TomSrOfBostonTomSrOfBoston Registered User Posts: 14,271 Senior Member
    At 19 you do not really need a retirement plan.
  • sunnysnowysunnysnowy Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    edited March 2017
    Thanks TomSrOfBoston LOL- it is included with my job--maybe Ill just put my hand up and say "no thanks take it back TomSrOfBoston says I should not take it". However, the advice I am really looking for is in regards to my Original Post. It seems like you have no tips and suggestions on that matter. I am asking a serious question so I am not sure your point in side tracking the question.
  • HRSMomHRSMom Registered User Posts: 4,632 Senior Member
    Sunny...are there extenuating circumstances here? Were you kicked out on the street at 14? Abused? There really are no tips to be given. If your situation is sympathetic to the school, you may have a chance for override. If mom and dad don't want to support you tho, that's not enough.
  • justsemanticsjustsemantics Registered User Posts: 42 Junior Member
    No one here can give you a definitive answer, and any further speculation would mean you sharing even more sensitive information. It is unlikely that you can claim independent status for financial aid at that age, but the only people who are qualified to answer that is the financial aid office. Give them a call, or send an email with your concerns, that is what they are there for.
  • bruno14bruno14 Registered User Posts: 2,051 Senior Member
    @sunnysnowy: You should be talking to the financial aid office. I know they've dealt with students in similar circumstances, and even if they do have to take your parental income into account, there are ways they can help out.
  • bonenzbonenz Registered User Posts: 103 Junior Member
    edited March 2017
    I agree with all that's been said here -- the rationale, as I understand it, is twofold. First, your parents should support you. (But extenuating, legitimate personal reasons/family crises, etc. are taken into consideration). A lot of times, I think, in divorces, one parent doesn't want to support and the burden ends up falling on the other parent, because the unwilling parent's income is considered. The other reason is more practical. If parental refusal to pay the calculated share was enough to make their financial ability disappear from consideration, then lots of parents would suddenly develop an unwillingness to support their kids. The line has to be drawn somewhere. Re: skepticism, I think that it would be completely extraordinary for someone to work full time and attend Brown, let alone take five classes, at the same time. Not saying it's not true, but don't be surprised to be met with skepticism or get snippy with those who express it. There are lots of extraordinary kids at Brown, so you may be one -- I'm not doubting or accepting. Google 'Ivy League Stripper' for one former student's way to make ends meet. Beside the point, but came to mind in thinking about the post.
  • compmomcompmom Registered User Posts: 9,855 Senior Member
    edited March 2017
    You can easily google this. Here is some info regarding the FAFSA and listing conditions under which you could be considered "independent."
    https://www.thoughtco.com/fafsa-independent-status-788494
    https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/fafsa/filling-out/dependency
    http://www.montclair.edu/media/montclairedu/studentfinancialaid/forms2014-2015/Independent-under-24.pdf

    Do you have anyone who might marry you? :) Are you at risk for homelessness? I do know some kids who had to wait for college until 24 because their parents wouldn't pay...

    I would definitely talk to the Financial Aid Office asap, as well, because many schools do consider special circumstances.
This discussion has been closed.