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Total Household Income, FAFSA and Cal Grant

kaaehchankaaehchan 20 replies18 threads Junior Member
A PROBABLY UNNECESSARY SIDE NOTE: I originally submitted my FAFSA on the eighth of October 2019.

My mom has been telling me that our total household income is what's listed on line 6 (Total income) of our 2018 tax return, but on my Cal Grant page the "Total Household Income" is the amount from line 7 (Adjusted gross income). To be exact, what's listed on my Cal Grant page is actually a few hundred dollars lower than what's listed on line 7. I'm utterly confused.

For us, line 7 is of a lower amount than line 6. I'm not too familiar with taxes yet (I'm not what you would call financially literate), so I'm not too sure what in general a household's true income is: Line 6 (Total income) or Line 7 (Adjusted gross income). On my UC application, too, and some scholarships applications, I put the Line 6 amount [range] when it was asked for, so I'm not sure if I messed up or not with my true household income amount...please help T.T Thank you in advance!
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Replies to: Total Household Income, FAFSA and Cal Grant

  • aunt beaaunt bea 10015 replies66 threads Senior Member
    AGI is the amount your parents get as a "total" with investments that have paid your parents something in the form of a benefit.
    If the CalGrant asks for line 7, you report line 7. You follow the directions given by the agency on their forms.
    The California Student Aid Commission (CalGrants) can always request your tax forms from the IRS. They will give you leeway, as a student, if you misreport the amounts.

    Mom is not a CalGrant advisor, nor does she work for the CalGrant office, correct? When you sign to receive CalGrant funding, you are telling the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) that you have been honest and forthcoming with the information you have provided. If something doesn't match, the CalGrant office CAN and WILL put your CalGrant on hold. You don't want to risk not having funding to pay for your university education. We're talking thousands of dollars if you qualify.

    If Mom doesn't want you to report the full amount on line 7, then your parents have to pay the full fees and you wouldn't need to apply for a CalGrant.

    You can ALWAYS contact the CalGrant office. They are very good at explaining the steps involved for receiving funding and are very helpful and nice. Don't feel intimidated if you have questions.
    https://www.csac.ca.gov/contact-us.
    You may also call us toll free at (888) CA GRANT (888-224-7268), Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 4:45 pm.

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  • BelknapPointBelknapPoint 4693 replies17 threads Senior Member
    AGI is the amount your parents get as a "total" with investments that have paid your parents something in the form of a benefit.

    Actually, any investments will be included in the total income number reported on the 2018 1040 line 6. Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) is the total income reported on line 6 minus any adjustments (above the line deductions) from Schedule 1 line 36, so AGI as reported on line 7 will always be equal to or less than the total income reported on line 6. There is no benefit to the student in reporting line 6 when the number on line 7 is asked for.
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  • kaaehchankaaehchan 20 replies18 threads Junior Member
    @BelknapPoint This is confusing... :confounded:

    So is the amount that CalGrant should have listed be from line 6 or line 7?
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  • BelknapPointBelknapPoint 4693 replies17 threads Senior Member
    So is the amount that CalGrant should have listed be from line 6 or line 7?

    Ok, I'm not from Cali and I have no experience with the Cal Grant, so I'm kind of riffing here... A minute of reserach tells me that you apply for a Cal Grant either through the FAFSA or the CA Dream Act Application (which basically mimics the FAFSA):

    https://studentaid.gov/sites/default/files/2020-21-fafsa.pdf

    https://www.csac.ca.gov/sites/main/files/file-attachments/2020-21_english_paper_cadaa.pdf?1570034948

    Is this correct? If it is, which form did you complete? Have you gone back and verified that you read all the applicable instructions for filling out the form, and all your answers are accurate and comply with the instructions?
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