FA and divorced parents

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New Member
Mar 14, 2014
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When it comes to financial aid, does anyone have any knowledge if it would benefit me to put myself as a dependent to my mom over my dad. My mom makes about 35,000 with her alimony and my dad makes about 85,000. Would being a dependent to my mother grant me access to more financial aid for when I go to PT school. Anybody with any information would be greatly appreciated!


Full Member
7+ Year Member
Apr 27, 2010
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On the FAFSA, you only have to report one parent if yours are divorced and you are claimed as a dependent. However, if you are independent (ie you live on your own, pay your own rent, etc), you don't have to report either parent on your FAFSA and that will allow you to borrow up to the cost of attendence. Your mom's income is so low that your estimated financial contribution from her will probably be 0, so you should list yourself as a dependent to her, assuming you actually live with her and aren't intending to defraud the federal government. Also, your parents probably rotate who gets to claim you on their tax forms, so you have to go along with that if one of them claimed you this year.
My school required additional forms where I had to report everything (both parents' incomes, professions, siblings, etc) for institutional aid/need-based scholarships, which I actually got a tiny amount of (being near the low end of the socioeconomic scale for med school).