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How does FAFSA work when your parent is recently unemployed?

There's not much information online about how to add in special circumstances like this. #fafsa #financial-aid #college-admissions #financial-planning

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Jake’s Answer

Hi Moriah

Congratulations on taking the next step to a college education.

The FAFSA questionnaire has a question (# 84) that asks "Is either of your parents a dislocated worker?"


It further defines dislocated worker as

"In general, a person may be considered a dislocated worker if he / she:

is receiving unemployment benefits due to being laid off or losing a job and is unlikely to return to a previous occupation;
has been laid off or received a lay-off notice from a job;
was self-employed but is now unemployed due to economic conditions or natural disaster;
is the spouse of an active duty member of the Armed Forces and has experienced a loss of employment because of relocating due to permanent change in duty station;
is the spouse of an active duty member of the Armed Forces and is unemployed or underemployed, and is experiencing difficulty in obtaining or upgrading employment; or
is a displaced homemaker. A displaced homemaker is generally a person who previously provided unpaid services to the family (for example: a stay-at-home mom or dad), is no longer supported by the spouse, is unemployed or underemployed, and is having trouble finding or upgrading employment."

Now if the unemployment is AFTER the submission of the FAFSA application, you have a way to amend the FAFSA submission later or you could explain it as special circumstances to the financial aid officer of the college where you are applying.

Hope this helps. If not please let me know.

Good luck with your FAFSA and college applications

#fafsa #college

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Liane’s Answer

The FAFSA has a two-year look back so if you need to complete 2021-2022 FAFSA you will be using 2019 tax and income information. If a parent is recently unemployed you will need to submit a financial appeal afterwards with supporting documentation to the school's, you choose to attend, financial aid department.