Divorce Parents FAFSA Question

So here is my situation; parents filled taxes together for 2020, divorced 2021, father left quickly so I am putting my moms info because she is my custodial parent according to fafsa. The thing is while married my mom did not have a job due to my fathers conservative beliefs. I am supposed to only put down only her information for the tax year 2020 but she did not have any earnings, am I just supposed to put $0.00 for all the blanks? That feels wrong, but technically correct.

Good question @kat2001. I’m not 100% sure so hopefully some others will jump in, but I think that you can put that zero it’s the truth. But keep in mind that FAFSA does take into account any child support or alimony received, so you should put that down if your mother has received any. I hope that helps.

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You answer the questions as asked, so if the answer is $0, then it’s $0. You won’t be able to use the data transfer from the IRS, and you will be asked to prove the answers, probably with W2s from your father’s jobs (hope they are part of the tax packet your mother has from 2020). Lots of paperwork for you to gather so start early.

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Yes, you put $0 if the answer is $0. BUT get ready for verification because rightfully so, the colleges will want to know how you paid your day to day bills with NO income. So be prepared with documentation of this.


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Yes, but … Federal Student Aid has granted relief from routine income verification requirements for 2022-23. Some schools have an internal policy that requires documentation of income for all students (particularly Profile schools), and some schools (including FAFSA only schools) have their own verification requirements based on internal policies. In a nutshell, what this means is that it is less likely a student with low income will be selected for income verification than it was in the past, but it definitely could happen. For this reason, gathering documentation of income is wise preparation.

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Here is information on splitting income for FAFSA: https://fsapartners.ed.gov/knowledge-center/fsa-handbook/2022-2023/application-and-verification-guide/ch4-verification-updates-and-corrections. See section titled “Using a joint return to figure individual AGI and taxes paid.”


Are you just filling out 2022-23 FAFSA now, for Fall 2022 college attendance? Have you already filed? If so, look on your SAR.

At the top of the SAR you will see your EFC, is there an asterisk there? That is one way to know if you have been selected for verification.