Am I screwed. Dad will not give any information for the proof of separation.

My parents are currently going through a nasty divorce which ended up affecting my way I could pay college. I filed them on FAFSA as married, but they were separated around a month before filing. My dad is now refusing to pay for my college after I filled out the FAFSA. I have no means of paying for college because I receive no financial aid under his income.

I’ve asked for an income appeal but my dad will not give any information to prove they are separate just to hurt my chances of continuing my education. This includes tax forms, his pay, bills, etc. am I completely screwed out of college this year?

I am truly sorry this happened to you, and for all students in this situation. It is unfair.

Unfortunately colleges are not going to rain scholarships on you simply because your father refuses to pay and won’t share his information. As you can imagine, if that tactic worked, everyone would try it.

Likely you are going to have to get him to cooperate, or your list is going to have to be revised and could look a lot different than it may look now, your new focus being on merit scholarships or less expensive schools.

Your parentS are separated…both parents . Your mom should be able to provide information regarding this separation…it doesn’t have to be just your dad.

Does your mom have no financial information like copies of tax returns? Has she changed all the utility costs to her name only? Do you have a clergyman who can attest to this separation.

The 2018 tax return, if filed jointly, would also have the incomes of each parent on it. Does your mom have this? Does her lawyer?

I’m sorry you’re going through this. Are you in college now or are you a freshman? Which college are you planning to attend? What’s the basis of your appeal?
Colleges aren’t going to give you extra money just because your dad refuses to pay.

The FAFSA is used to calculate Pell Grant eligibility, but the full Pell is only $6k/year. That’s not going to go far. What’s your net cost and how much of that can your mom contribute per year?

All the above but I assume your mother has a lawyer and or your dad. Have your mother contact her lawyer for assistance. It will put pressure on your father to provide the documents and make him not look good in this process. Maybe a sit down to explain to them how selfish they are acting. Worst case gap the year and restart next year.

I’m also sorry you are going through this.

When does school start/when is the first semester’s bill due? How much do you owe?

Is this a FAFSA only school? Or did you have to file CSS Profile as well?

  1. Does your college meet full need for all accepted students?
  2. Does your college use the CSS Profile and require the non-custodial parent form? If so...your dad’s income will be reported to the college anyway and will be used to calculate your need based aid.
  3. If your parents were separated when you filed the FAFSA, why did you list them as married?

If this is a school that uses only the FAFSA (unless it’s university of Chicago), it doesn’t meet full need for all accepted students.

Hello, thank you for all the replies

My mom is currently unemployed. She has no access to the IRS tax forms. We have sent it through mail but it will take days and I have to change the mailbox key because my dad will not give it up. She tried retrieving the account but my father is in possession of credit cards, mortgage, etc. to identify her. Utilities are still under my father’s name. My mom does have a lawyer currently for the divorce case.

My school is UCR. I’m not sure if it is a FAFSA or CSS profile school. I’ve listed them as married because my father who was filing the FAFSA told me to not change anything. I am entering as a sophomore

I do have a clergyman to attest to the separation as we tried to look for guidance and emotional support.

My tuition I believe is due September 15.

If your parents were separated the date you filed FAFSa, you need to correct the FAFSA showing their marital status as separated. Is your mother the custodial parent, if so, only her income and assets are are use. She needs to figure out what is “hers” on the 2018 joint return (2019 for 2021 school year start) and of assets as of date Your FAFSA was filed.

If your father is the custodial parent ( you lived with him more than your mother in the 365 days before The day you filed FAFSA, and he refused to cooperate with the financial aid forms, then take a year off and move in with your mother , if possible so her info can be used.

Be aware that it may not make much difference if a school uses FAFSA only and doesn’t guarantee to meet full need. PELL grants max out at about $6k and if your mother’s info exceeds the parameters to get that, there might not be much in the offering. Most PROFILE schools(often more generous with their own money) are going to want both parents’ info.

UCR uses only the FAFSA. If you corrected your FAFSA to reflect separation and a $0 income, you were likely selected for verification. That’s why they want documentation of the separation and what your mom earned in 2018. Not now…in 2018.

I would suggest you contact the financial aid office at UCR. They might be able to help you navigate this.

I am sorry this is happening to you. It must be very difficult.

I agree with @thumper1 … contact the financial aid office. I have worked with students in similar situations over the years, and we were always able to figure out a way to make things work. If you don’t get the kind of help you need initially, ask for a manager. Sometimes you need someone with a bit more experience, if the first line financial aid person isn’t able to provide adequate assistance.

Thank you for the support!

I’ve been contacting UCR financial aid for a few weeks. I know they are busy, but I’m not getting full replies. I’ve asked for the counselor’s email or an appointment twice, but they ignored it only to answer my other questions. Is there anyone else left to contact?

I did find out anyone could appeal for cal grants, but I’m not sure if my situation is appropriate enough to have an appeal.

Unfortunately, UCR lists managerial staff but only provides a generic office email for all staff. My suggestion is to send an email that explains that you have a situation that you can’t resolve on your own, and you have not been able to get the help you need in order to figure out how to fix things. Request that a manager contact you so that you can explain your situation and get your financial aid in order. Be polite, but don’t give up. Good luck. Let us know what happens.

UCR requires only FAFSA, not CSS Profile.

You need to correct the FAFSA. Did you complete and file it, or did your father? It is YOUR FAFSA, and YOU were supposed to have filed it. Of course, UCR is going to ask for your father’s info if your parents are reported as married on it.

So you need to get access to YOUR FAFSA, make sure the info on it is being sent to YOU. You need to revise your parents’ status to separated, and you need to correct the info so that it reports your mother’s income for that target year (probably 2018) and what HER assets were on that date the FAFSA was originally filed. Your mother needs to get copies of those joint tax returns. Perhaps her attorney can help you in this regard. She would have to get them from the IRS if your father filed them himself and refuses to give the info needed to get them online.

This is all assuming your mother is your custodial parent as defined for FAFSA.

So update!

I cannot get any information for a direct contact with a financial aid manager or a higher official. I’ve tried every section of UCR, but they all directed me to their general financial aid staff!

to the reply above thank you for the reply!

I have talked to FAFSA first about this situation. They said since I used the IRS retrieval tool, it is out of their hands and I must talk to my school’s financial aid office.

There is nothing you can do in terms of your FAFSA at this point. You have to fix things through the school. Send an email to the general email. Request a telephone call or email from someone who can help you - say that your family situation is a mess, and you need to talk to someone who can help you sort things out & give you guidance for your specific circumstances. Explain that you will not be able to complete your financial aid requirements if you are not able to get things sorted out. Be polite, but be firm - state that you need more than general responses to your questions, and you really need assistance from someone who can provide the help you need.


So, my mother has applied for parent plus loans and has been accepted. The only problem is, my school has cancelled my parent plus loans for unknown reasons. I’ve been contacting for a few weeks to reinstate the loans because I’m only given my Stafford loans. On top of all this, my aid has been put on hold out nowhere after being told to accept my current award to pay for tuition the meanwhile, so I definitely have to pay out of pocket which is not possible. I’m awaiting someone overseeing my case, but it has been way too long since I’ve received a response.

Did you make any changes to your FAFSA? If so, that may be the cause. If not, it may be due to your verification that is in progress. You cannot receive any financial aid until your verification is completed.

I’ve made a change in April just to correct my father’s income because I only inputted one digit by accident. FAFSA told me to change my parents’ status and ask about possible aid is to ask the school themselves. I’ve told my school I’m unable to retrieve documents needed because my father is withholding documents from me.

So I really can’t finish verification unless my father gives me personally the documents which he wants classified. The plan was for UCR to contact my father personally because he can send the documents to them in discretion, but they have not replied. My father sent the needed documents through their email, but they strictly stated not to send documents there.

So reality I think I just have to wait many days for replies, but tuition is already due in ten days :confused: