When you file your FAFSA, some of your application information is verified with federal agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security, Social Security Administration, Selective Service, Veteran's Administration and studentaid.gov. If the information does not match, the discrepancy must be resolved before you can receive federal student aid.

Your loan status

I defaulted on a federal student loan, can I receive financial aid?

If you defaulted on a federal student loan, you may be eligible to receive federal financial aid under the Fresh Start initiative. If your loans qualify for the Fresh Start program you will be allowed to receive Federal aid for one year after the COVID-19 emergency payment pause. 

Deafulated loans that are not eligible for Fresh Start may be resolved in the following ways:

  • Repay the loan in full or consolidate the loan  If a defaulted loan is successfully consolidated, it is counted as paid in full. However, if the loan holder writes off the entire loan, the loan is not paid in full, and you remain ineligible for Title IV funds.

  • Make satisfactory repayment arrangements  After you make six consecutive voluntary payments on time, you may regain eligibility for Title IV funds. Voluntary payments are those made directly and do not include payments obtained by federal offset, garnishment or income/asset execution. You may regain eligibility under this option only once.

    • We must have written documentation that you have made satisfactory repayment arrangements from the loan holder.

  • Loan rehabilitation  Although you can regain eligibility for all federal student aid by making satisfactory repayment arrangements, the loan is still in default. A loan is rehabilitated once you make nine full, voluntary payments on time (no later than 20 days after the due date) within 10 consecutive months.

    • After a loan is rehabilitated, you will not be in default anymore, and you will have all the normal loan benefits, such as deferments.  

Learn more about options to resolve a loan default

Am I eligible to receive financial aid if I filed for bankruptcy?

  • If you include a non-defaulted federal student loan in an active bankruptcy claim so that collection on the loan is stayed: You are eligible for aid as long as you have no loans in default (including the stayed loan).
  • If you list a defaulted federal student loan or grant overpayment in an active bankruptcy claim: You are eligible for further federal student aid funds if you provide documentation from the holder of the debt stating it is dischargeable (NSLDS loan status code DO).
  • If you have had a federal student loan or grant overpayment discharged in bankruptcy:
    • You remain eligible for federal student loans, grants and work-study (NSLDS loan status code BC for loans that did not default and status code DK or OD for loans that defaulted prior to the bankruptcy discharge).
    • You do not have to reaffirm a loan discharged in bankruptcy in order to be eligible. The Bankruptcy Reform Act of 1994 prohibits denial of aid based solely on filing for, or having a debt discharged in, bankruptcy.

Note: If you filed Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may have your loan discharged only if the bankruptcy court finds that repayment would impose undue hardship on you and your dependents. 

Am I eligible to receive aid if I had a loan discharged due to total and permanent disability?

If you had a prior loan discharged due to a total and permanent disability and wish to take out another federal student loan or wish to receive a TEACH grant, you must submit the following.

If you are in the three-year post-discharge monitoring period:

  • You must resume payment on the discharged loan before receipt of the new loan or TEACH grant.
  • If you received a discharge based on a determination from the VA, you are not required to resume payment on the discharged loan.

If a defaulted loan was conditionally discharged and then reinstated:

  • You must make satisfactory repayment arrangements before receiving federal student aid.

More information about Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) Discharge

Am I eligible for federal aid if I have borrowed over my federal loan limits?

You are not eligible for new aid until the overborrowing of loans has been resolved with satisfactory payment arrangements.

  • You can sign an agreement acknowledging the debt and affirming your intention to repay the excess amount as part of the normal repayment process this is called reaffirmation.
  • A federal loan consolidation can also be considered a satisfactory repayment arrangement and acts the same as reaffirmation.

Contact your loan servicer   for instructions to complete the reaffirmation process.

The reaffirmation process includes:

  1. Either the institution or the student contacts the loan servicer and explains that the student has inadvertently overborrowed and wishes to reaffirm the debt.

  2. The loan servicer sends the student a reaffirmation agreement.

  3. The student reads, signs and returns to the reaffirmation agreement to the loan servicer.

  4. The loan servicer sends the student confirmation that the reaffirmation agreement has been accepted. The student or loan servicer must provide a copy of the reaffirmation confirmation to the school.

  5. The inadvertent overborrowing is considered to have been resolved as of the date the loan servicer receives the student's signed reaffirmation agreement.

Your citizenship status

How do I prove my citizenship status?

U.S. citizen

Bring one of the following original documents to the financial aid office:

  • Your U.S. birth certificate, or
  • Your U.S. passport or passport card.

We will make a copy of your documents for our records.

Naturalized citizen

Bring one of the following original documents to the financial aid office:

  • U.S. passport or passport card 
  • Certificate of Birth Abroad (FS-240, FS-545, or DS-1350)
  • Certificate of Citizenship (N560, N561)
  • Certificate of Naturalization (N550, N570)

We will make a copy of your documents for our records.

U.S. permanent resident

Bring one of the following original documents to the financial aid office:

  • Alien Registration Receipt/Resident Alien/Permanent Resident/Conditional Resident
  • Permanent Resident card (I-551, I-94, I-94A)
  • Foreign passport with I-551 endorsements
  • Arrival/Departure Record I-94 with I-551 endorsements

We will make a copy of your documents and send them to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for verification of your status. It may take up to eight weeks for DHS to respond back to us.

Other eligible non-citizen: I-94 designated as refugee, asylum granted, parolee, Cuban-Haitian entrant or conditional entrant

Bring the following original document to the financial aid office:

  • Arrival/Departure Record (I-94, I-94A or I-571 with proper endorsements)

We will make a copy of your documents and send them to DHS for verification of your status. It may take up to eight weeks for DHS to respond back to us.

Victim of human trafficking or battered immigrant  qualified alien 

Bring one of the following original documents to the financial aid office:

  • Eligibility letter from Health and Human Services (HHS) or a T-visa
  • Notice of Action Form from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) (I-797) with a valid expiration date verifying financial aid eligibility

Note: If you are in the United States on an F1 or F2 student visa, you are neither a citizen nor an eligible non-citizen.This means you are ineligible for federal student aid.

If you cannot bring original documents to the financial aid office, you may complete the Citizenship Documentation Affidavit in the presence of a notary republic.

Why do you need a copy of my Social Security card?

The federal government will confirm that the Social Security number on your FAFSA application matches other data in their files. If your records do not match, you and/or your parents will be required to verify the social security number.

Social Security Administration (SSA) website 

Name changes

  • If you have changed your name, you must notify the SSA before financial aid can be disbursed.
  • You must provide the Office of Student Financial Aid with official documentation explaining the name discrepancy (e.g., copy of a marriage license, divorce decree or court order).

Birth date discrepancies

  • If the date of birth reported on the FAFSA does not match the date of birth in the SSA records, you must provide the Office of Student Financial Aid with date of birth documentation (e.g., copy of driver's license, state ID or birth certificate).

Correcting the FAFSA

  • If the social security number used on the FAFSA is correct, you must contact the SSA. After the SSA corrects its records you may re-enter the social security number on the FAFSA and submit a correction for resolution.
  • If the social security number used on the FAFSA is incorrect, you should file a new FAFSA with the correct number. This application will be treated as an original application.

Your military status

Why am I being asked about Selective Service registration?

Although the question still remains on the FAFSA, effective June 17, 2021, beginning with the 2021-22 academic year, selective service registration is not a requirement to receive federal financial aid. 

How do I prove my veteran status?

Qualifying veterans cannot have a dishonorable character of service listed from the military. If the Veterans Administration Office cannot confirm your status, you must submit a copy of one of the following documents:

  • Report of Separation (DD Form 214) 
  • Official documentation (from your branch of military service) verifying your status of active duty.

For financial aid purposes, you are not considered a veteran if:

  • You never served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
  • You never were a cadet or midshipman at a service academy.
  • You were or are in the National Guard or Reserves and were never activated for duty but served for training purposes.
  • You served in the U.S. Armed Forces and were discharged dishonorably.
  • You were an ROTC student.
  • You are currently engaged in the U.S. Armed Forces, National Guard/Reserves in active duty.
  • You are a cadet/midshipman and will not be discharged by end of the fiscal year.

Your enrollment history

What does unusual enrollment mean?

The U.S. Department of Education has determined that you have received federal aid at multiple schools within a short period of time.

What is required?

We are required to review your academic records to confirm that when you received federal grants, you also earned credit hours.

  • If we cannot confirm you have earned credits, we may ask you to submit an official college transcript from each school you attended.
  • If we confirm that you did not earn credits at one or more schools, you will be required to submit an explanation and supporting documentation. Check your requirements in Academica.
  • You will also be required to submit an academic plan or a plan of work showing the courses you will take in order to graduate.

Will I lose my aid?

You may lose your aid eligibility if you cannot provide supporting documentation to prove you are using federal aid to earn a degree or complete an eligible program of study. 

Use the unusual enrollment history form to demonstrate your eligibility.

If I lose my aid, how can I regain eligibility?

You can regain eligibility by completing the courses you attempt according to your academic plan in one semester of full-time enrollment or two semesters of at least half-time enrollment. You cannot receive financial aid if you have lost eligibility and aid cannot be reinstated retroactively.

Other questions

What do I do if I believe I have been a victim of identify theft?

We urge you to review the information at studentaid.gov and take the action recommended in the False Certification Due to Identity Theft section to notify the U.S. Department of Education immediately.

The U.S. Department of Education will notify us if they need information or records.

How do drug-related convictions affect my student loan eligibility?

How criminal convictions impact your eligibility

Note: Effective June 17, 2021, for the 2021-22 academic year, drug-related convictions will no longer affect your eligibility to receive federal financial aid.