RedCod's post about getting married for financial aid reminded me of something my husband & I were discussing recently.
(Let me clarify that we are not actually considering doing this. We were just curious whether anyone has. My husband is certain that at least a few people have probably done it.)
Like many households, ours is lopsided, with one spouse making much more than the other. We currently pay about 25K out of pocket for S1's tuition and will probably end up paying about the same for S2 when he heads off to school later this year. They both will be attending a school that bases financial aid on the FAFSA, meaning only one parent's income would be counted if the parents are divorced. In our case, if the lower-earning spouse's income was all that mattered, the kids would probably get the maximum aid.
So I'm wondering what's to stop people from getting divorced (on paper) in order to get financial aid? An uncontested quickie divorce costs a few hundred bucks, so financially speaking that would be a drop in the bucket compared to the tuition savings. And it's not like their "divorced" status would be common knowledge. Around here, divorce filings aren't put in the newspaper, and many couples get divorced without people knowing about it.
Like I said, I would never actually do this, but just wondered if there are people out there who have. Instead of a "marriage of convenience," I guess this would be a "divorce of convenience." :-)