How Does Divorce Impact Financial Aid For My Child's College Education?

Divorce and Student Financial Aid

Millions of students graduate from high school every year. Many of them decide to get a college education. However, college tuition is expensive. Without some form of funding, many people are unable to pursue post-secondary education. While some people choose to work or save money to pay tuition, other people decide to obtain financial aid to cover the cost of tuition, books, fees and housing. For students who apply to college and seek financial aid while in high school, the approval and amount of funding are based on their parents' income.

To obtain financial aid, students fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. Children who are dependents when they apply for financial assistance must provide their legal parents' information. A legal parent can be a biological parent, adoptive parent or legal guardian as defined by Oregon law. If the child's parents are divorced and not living together, the child must provide the information of the parent they have lived with more during the past twelve months. If the student seeking financial aid has a stepparent, the stepparent's information must be provided on the FAFSA form. If the child lived an equal amount of time with each divorced parent in the past twelve months before applying for financial aid, the child must provide the information of the parent who provided the most financial support.

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