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FAQs

  1. How do I apply for financial aid?
  2. Should I pay someone to help me to complete the FAFSA?
  3. I don’t live with my parents and they don’t claim me as a tax exemption, so why do I have to include their information on the FAFSA?
  4. My parents are divorced. Whose income do I put on the FAFSA?
  5. What is the income limit to qualify for financial aid?
  6. How long does it take after I submit the FAFSA?
  7. How do I use my.boisestate Student Center to view my financial aid information?
  8. How do I find out if I have been awarded financial aid?
  9. How many credits are required for financial aid?
  10. I have a work-study award.  How do I find a job?
  11. My income is a lot less than when I submitted the FAFSA. Is there anything I can do to update the information?
  12. Why are you asking for tax information? I already entered it on the FAFSA.
  13. What do I need to do to allow my spouse/parents access to information on my financial aid?
  14. How do I get my money?
  15. I had a student loan that I was repaying but have now decided to return to college. Where do I take my loan deferment form?
  16. How often do I need to apply for financial aid?
  17. I have a Financial Aid Hold on my record for Satisfactory Academic Progress and I don’t understand what I should do now. Where can I get some answers?

How do I apply for financial aid?

You must first be admitted to Boise State University. Work directly with the Admissions Office to apply to Boise State.

Next, complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) located online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. If you electronically filed your taxes, you may choose to download income information from the IRS. All the submitted data will be analyzed by the federal process and then electronically transmitted to Boise State. This one application is utilized to determine your eligibility for grants, most scholarships, work-study jobs, and student loans.

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Should I pay someone to help me to complete the FAFSA?

NO! Save your money for school! You (and your family, if you are dependent) know your family situation best. Use the IRS retrieval tool at the FAFSA web site or refer to your federal tax returns and W2s for the previous year, obtain the balances of savings and checking accounts, and determine the value of investments and business.

You are now ready to complete the FAFSA. The application will direct you to the specific line numbers on your tax return or W2s for income questions. It is acceptable to estimate your income on the FAFSA if you have not yet filed your taxes. If you estimate your income, you need to return to the FAFSA web site to make corrections once your taxes are complete. For most students, the online FAFSA can be completed in 15-30 minutes! The hardest part is getting started.

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I don’t live with my parents and they don’t claim me as a tax exemption, so why do I have to include their
information on the FAFSA?

Most unmarried undergraduates under the age of 24 are considered dependent for federal financial aid purposes. The independent or dependent financial aid status is determined by the answers to questions in Step 3 on the FAFSA. If you are unable to answer “yes” to any of the questions, your parents’ data is required. Financial aid comes from federal funds, with the premise being that it is the responsibility of the family to contribute to educational costs to the extent possible.

For marital status questions, you must report the status at the time of filing the FAFSA even if parents plan to marry, or divorce, during the academic year. Parents’ marital status cannot be updated later.

If extreme circumstances have created an irreparable rift between you and your parents that can be documented by professionals, you may submit a Petition for Dependency Override available online… in the right-hand column.

There is also a Petition for Dependent Students Without Parental Help if you are financially independent from your parents and they refuse to provide information for the FAFSA. Consider this only as a last resort because the only financial aid you will qualify for is a dependent student unsubsidized loan.

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My parents are divorced. Whose income do I put on the FAFSA?

The following factors, prioritized in the order of importance, will assist you with determining the “FAFSA
parent:”

  1. Use the income of the parent with whom you lived more during the last 12 months.
  2. If you did not live with your parents this last year, when you last lived with parents, use the income
    for the parents you lived with the most over 12 months.
  3. Use income of the parent who provided more financial support during the last 12 months or during the
    most recent year that you actually received support from a parent.

Once you determine the FAFSA parent, and that parent is remarried, you must also include the income of the step-parent.

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What is the income limit to qualify for financial aid?

There is no specific income limit. A complicated formula is used to look at income, number of people in the household and in college, age of the eldest parent, investments, cash, savings, checking — even the state of legal residence! You provide this information on the FAFSA application and the result is the EFC (Expected Family Contribution). This figure is an index which is used to determine the types and amounts of financial aid you are eligible to receive. There are federal unsubsidized student loans and parent PLUS loans available irregardless of family income. More desirable federal aid is available to students based on financial need.

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How long does it take after I submit the FAFSA?

Boise State imports FAFSAs for the following academic year on or about March 1st. After March 1st, prior to the next academic year, Boise State will receive the electronic FAFSA within 5 days from the date you sign and submit it, unless your application was rejected by the federal FAFSA processor. If your application has been selected for verification or additional documents are needed, you will see To Do items visible on my. BoiseState Student Center almost immediately.  It is difficult to provide a specific timeline for how long it takes to award financial aid after the application is received at Boise State. A number of factors impact the speed of awarding… including the time of year you apply, the accuracy of your FAFSA, and your responsiveness to To Do items on your Student Center. When everything is in order, you will be awarded financial aid.

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How do I use my. BoiseState Student Center to view my financial aid information?

Once you have successfully logged into my.boisestate, you will be able to view any “Holds” on your records (including financial aid holds), “To Do Items” and your financial aid award. The “Holds” and “To Do Items” appear on your Student Center, the primary screen for all of  my. BoiseState activity. This is also where you can change your mailing address and telephone numbers. To view and accept your financial aid award, we provide great visual instructions to coach you through this process.

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How do I find out if I have been awarded financial aid?

You will be sent an award notice to your Boise State BroncoMail account. The amount of your financial aid award is also visible on your Student Center. You can speed up your financial aid disbursement by closely watching for your award on your Student Center. When you see you have been awarded, use the “Accept and Decline Aid” link to accept the aid you wish to receive. No written notices are sent to your mailing address. Here are some details instructions on how to accept or adjust your aid.

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How many credits are required for financial aid?

The number of credits you need to enroll in depends on the types of aid offered to you and what you have
accepted and whether you are a graduate student or undergraduate student.

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I have a work-study award. How do I find a job?

First you will need to register to view the BroncoJobs web site. Many work-study student employee jobs are listed. In addition, many departments will post notices indicating that they are hiring work-study students. Having a work-study award does not guarantee that you will be offered a job. You will need to actively look and inquire about jobs. The good news, though, is that many departments are seeking applicants. More specific information can be found in the Financial Aid Handbook.

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My income is a lot less than when I submitted the FAFSA. Is there anything I can do to update the
information?

If you have changes in your financial circumstances (e.g. job loss, loss of child support, death in the family, divorce, or disability) contact the Financial Aid & Scholarships Office to see if you are eligible to complete a Special Conditions Form and have your financial aid need reevaluated. The Special Conditions Forms for various circumstances are available online…in the right-hand column.

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Why are you asking for tax information? I already entered it on the FAFSA.

Approximately 30% of financial aid applicants at each school are selected for “verification.” At Boise State, predetermined variables are set up based on the FAFSA questions where there are the highest errors. When data on a FAFSA shows a high probability of errors, the verification process is triggered. Staff members will manually compare your FAFSA data with information on your federal tax return and W2s to ensure the information is accurate. MANY times, this kind of review will improve a student’s eligibility for desirable aid.

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What do I need to do to allow my spouse/parents access to information on my financial aid?

Complete a Privacy Release form also known as a “Release of Information” form. You can locate the form online under printable forms on the Financial Aid & Scholarships Office. The form will need to be returned to Registrar’s Office. This completed form is required before anyone else can get information regarding your financial aid.

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How do I get my money?

Fees listed on your Boise State student account will first be paid from your financial aid. After any unpaid charges are cleared, balance funds will be available to you. Refund checks are mailed to your mailing address of record on your Student Center unless you make arrangements for refunds to be directly deposited to a bank account. Direct deposit is HIGHLY recommended because you will likely receive the money 2-3 days sooner. Make arrangements for Direct Deposit through the Student Finances section of your Student Center. Questions about refunds should be directed Account Maintenance Office, Room 101 in the Administration Building, by email to: SFInfo@boisestate.edu or you may call 426-2134.

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I had a student loan that I was repaying but have now decided to return to college. Where do I take my loan
deferment form?

The Registrar’s Office automatically reports enrollment information to lenders through a “National Clearinghouse” after classes have begun each semester. If you have a loan deferment form that needs to be signed by a Boise State official, the Registrar’s Office will verify your enrollment and sign the loan deferment form. The Registrar’s Office is located in the Administration Building, Room 110.

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How often do I need to apply for financial aid?

You only complete one FAFSA application for each academic year. For the upcoming academic year, starting with Fall semester, the best time to apply is the prior January and February. While March 15th prior to the academic year is an ideal FAFSA deadline to get the best federal aid, you may complete the FAFSA while you are enrolled in the academic year. Do note, however, that processing a federal FAFSA, and required To Do items, takes time! Processing FAFSA, awarding and disbursing aid must be completed before your enrollment ends for that academic year. It is always better to complete the FAFSA as early as possible
even if you are uncertain about your enrollment for that academic year.

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I have a Financial Aid Hold on my record for Satisfactory Academic Progress and I don’t
understand what I should do now. Where can I get some answers?

Because there are so many unique situations involving Satisfactory Academic Progress, you will find another list of Frequently Asked Questions just on this topic. Check out the SAP FAQs.

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