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Pell Grant Income Limits?

fowweezerfowweezer Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
I've been out of school for around a year and I'm wondering whether I would qualify for a pell grant based on my current income. I've been working full time for around 2 years (including 1 year where I was in school and working) and I just did my taxes for 2006....my adjusted gross income was $19,000. My parents can no longer claim me as a dependent for tax purposes, even though I am only 22. But obviously I am still considered a dependent for financial aid purposes.

I recieve no assistance from my parents anymore. My dad was working for the government in afghanistan when a roadside bomb destroyed the humvee he was travelling in. He no longer works but does recieve a disability check. My mom doesn't work and hasn't for many years. They are both near retirement age (58). Their income and situations don't really allow them to contribute anything, and I don't ask.

However, I'm debating whether to bother applying for a pell grant based on the income I made last year. 2005 gross adjusted was around $15,000 and 2006 gross adjusted was $19,000.

I can quit working, go back to school full time and file a "change of circumstances" appeal I think...given that my income would drop from around $25,000 pre-tax to like $12,000 pre-tax or less, depending on how much I want to/can work.

Just wondering what my options are. I'm hoping that I will at least qualify for subsidized stafford loans this year instead of unsub like last year. Is a pell grant a reasonable expectation?

My school's cost per semester is around $5,000 for tuition, books and reasonable housing (it's a cheap, privately funded religious school). Thanks for any thoughts.
Post edited by fowweezer on

Replies to: Pell Grant Income Limits?

  • collegenowcollegenow Registered User Posts: 214 Junior Member
    efc is what determines if you get pell grant money or not. do you know what your efc is?
  • sblake7sblake7 Registered User Posts: 1,691 Senior Member
    You're a dependent student for financial aid purposes, so your parents' income will be considered in the formula. You'll need an EFC of 4110 or less to be eligible for Pell for 07/08.

    Use the FinAid FAFSA calculator to try different scenarios. You probably won't be Pell Grant eligible when you income and your parents' income is factored in, but you'll likely be eligible for federal loans and other aid.
  • somemomsomemom Registered User Posts: 10,447 Senior Member

    check out the info above
    Also, you do not "apply" for a Pell, you fill out the FAFSA and they decide whether to award it...finaid admins have some latitiude for professional judgment, include to them a letter about why you think you should be considered independent, about your parents, etc. So, let them decide
  • Jugulator20Jugulator20 Registered User Posts: 1,158 Senior Member
    I’m only talking about fed money (Pell grants, Stafford loans, work study, etc), not the schools own money.

    Not that it’s my business, but a critical fact that you omit in your OP is what your parents’ AGI as reported on a federal tax return is. (Not all disability income shows up as part of an AGI.) Besides the standard FAFSA calculation, there are 2 exceptions. One is the automatic zero. If parents AGI is under 20K and they file a short federal tax form (1040, 1040EZ), all other info, including your income will be ignored when your EFC is calculated. You will get an EFC of 0 and should get a lot of fed aid including Pell grant.
    Schools have more discretion with their own money.
  • fowweezerfowweezer Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
    sblake: thank you the number.

    I haven't done the fafsa yet, because my parents were considering filing an amended income tax return from 2005....(I'm just doing my 2006-2007 fafsa for my spring term at school because I haven't been in school for a year). I guess I'll just do the fafsa how I have it now (without the amended return) and see what happens. I doubt I'll be eligible for anything beyond subsidized loans, but you never know.

    Thanks for the help.
  • natalie-pnatalie-p Registered User Posts: 1 New Member
    From what you said, I believe you are eligible to receive financial aid as independent. I was in the same situation and the school ask me to explain to them why I should be considered independent. If you are asked the same thing, you can tell them your situation. Or you can file as a dependence. Since your parent and your income combined is low, you may qualify for partial financial aid. Just try.
This discussion has been closed.