FAFSA and Assets Question

<p>It was my understanding that if our income was under 50K and we qualified for free/reduced lunch both 2010 and 2011 we would not be asked asset questions on the FAFSA due to the Simplified Needs Test. I started the FAFSA today. We have our tax forms ready to go and our AGI was just under 46K. We have 6 in our household and have and the reduced lunch the last 2 years. Why do we need to fill those in? There isn't a yes no option....it asks how much money we have and how much in real estate. This is huge for us because we have NO retirement funds, but inherited some farmland from grandparents. Others have retirement accounts and they do not count....if we could have afforded to put money into an IRA we would have, we did not have money to buy the farmland either, but it is all we have.</p>

<p>Go back and make sure that you answered the qualifying questions correctly.</p>

<p>I did it over and over and over and it still comes up with the questions. I also changed it to filing a 1040ez and AGI of 20K and it still asked the questions.</p>

<p>Naturemn,
I ran into the same problem last year and posted a question like yours. Swimcatsmom and others said that the asset info might be required for a state grant; it depends on the state. We still got the benefit of the Simplified Needs Test; I think you will too.</p>

<p>Are you required to file a 1040?...is any of the land farmed or rented? I believe if you file a 1040 you also do not get the skip logic and will not qualify for simplified needs. If this land is simply fallow and not income producing then you might be able to file the simple tax forms and perhaps the missing skip logic is from state grant requirements or something.</p>

<p>I'm thinking this is related to the state that you're in. Some states require asset info for their state aid programs. It should not affect your FAFSA EFC if you qualified for the simplified formula.</p>

<p>
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I believe if you file a 1040 you also do not get the skip logic and will not qualify for simplified needs.

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<p>No, the federal means-tested program (reduced/free lunch) meets the first condition and the AGI under $49,999 meets the second part of the test. If there is no federal benefit qualification, then the parents must be eligible to file a 1040A/EZ or have dislocated worker status.</p>

<p>Thank you! We have to file a 1040, but I think we qualify because of AGI and Free/Reduced Lunch, as stated above. Because it wasn't letting me skip those questions, I fooled around with the numbers, etc to the point it was obvious that it should qualify, and it still asked those questions. I will be putting in the real numbers to send in, of course. With make believe scenerio of a 1040ez and 20K AGI it still said I needed to answer asset questions. It is hard for me to believe that the federal government won't look at assets that are provided, but I guess we will see. Thank you for all of your help. I need to start gathering asset info now. Do you need to include vehicles or just real estate and cash?</p>

<p>For FAFSA purposes, you do not need real estate info for your primary residence, or for any vehicles.</p>

<p>It is hard for me to believe that the federal government won't look at assets that are provided</p>

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<p>They will NOT look at it, even if provided, if you qualify for simple needs (which it sounds like you do). It is all computerized.</p>