Will getting married hurt my financial aid award?

by  |  earlier

0 LIKES UnLike

I don't want to be preached at about the dangers of marriage, but will getting married hurt the amount of aid I recieve or help it? Almost all my tuition is paid for because my father is dieing from a disease (because he can't work).

If I were to get married, will it hurt the amount of aid I will get? I've heard it will help it, but NO that is not why I am considering getting married.

Thank you.




  1. Getting married is one of the few things you can do, voluntarily, to change your federal financial aid dependency status from dependent to independent.

    For aid purposes, the most significant impact of that change in status will be that your financial need will no longer be assessed relative to your parents' ability to contribute to the cost of your education - instead, all of the focus will be on the ability of you and your husband.

    I can't answer the question about whether this will help you qualify for more aid or less aid, because I don't know anything about the relative financial circumstances of your parents and your fiancee.

    I also don't know anything about the size of your existing household - when your parents' income is being evaluated, the size of the household is used to establish what portion of their funds are available to pay for your education - if you had 4 siblings, plus your mom and dad, the family income is split 6 ways - with just you and your husband, the income is split only two ways.

    It's possible, therefore, that your need could be deemed greater in a 6-person household with $80,000 of income than it is in a 2-person household with $40.000.

    What you will definitely be eligible to do is borrow more money in your own name. The annual Stafford loan limits are much higher for independent students (your new classification) than they are for dependent students.

    That's not all good news, though. All it means is that you and your new husband have the privilege of going deeper into debt to pay for your education.

    So - the answer is - it depends. You'll definitely be able to BORROW more, but whether getting married will lower your EFC (expected family contribution) score depends on financial factors that can only be determined by filling in the FAFSA.

    Sorry I couldn't give you a more definite answer.

    Now about that marriage....  ::::ducking:::::

  2. Well that depends on who is paying your tuition.  If the ONLY reason your getting the (scholarship, money, whatever) is because dad is dying then getting married would no longer make you his dependent when you apply for the scholarship next year and not likely eligible.  But if you are getting the money because your family income is low because he can't work then when you apply again next  year, it will go off your and your husbands income, not your parents.

    Your schools financial aid awards are usually given for the academic year (fall 08 and spring 09) and are based on the 2007 income information.  So if your financial aid application has already been filled out, your marriage will not effect you until you apply next year.

  3. If your future husband makes a lot of money.. then no. But the others are right. Your financial aid will go from including your income and your parents' to including your income and your husband's, which could be beneficial.

  4. Once you get married, apply for independent status! Once you're independent, reapply for financial aid and you can get a lot more money if you need it! Since you're married, you will automatically be granted independent status too.

Question Stats

Latest activity: earlier.
This question has 4 answers.


Share your knowledge and help people by answering questions.