Appeals

Appeals

Academic Progress Appeal

If we determine you are not making satisfactory academic progress, you can appeal our decision online or by visiting Student Central to get a paper copy of the appeal form.

You should read the form carefully. Do not submit your appeal without obtaining all the signatures, explanations, and documentation required. Please have any supporting documentation saved to your computer and ready for upload. You cannot save your work and return later to attach documents. The entire appeal must be submitted in one sitting. Documents may also be submitted at Student Central on Union.

Begin your Appeal for Satisfactory Academic Progress »

Change in Income Appeal

If you feel that you have experienced a significant change in financial circumstances since completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), such as the loss of employment/income or extraordinary medical expenses, you may be eligible to submit a Change in Income Appeal. A Change in Income Appeal does not necessarily result in an increase in aid.

To learn more about a Change in Income Appeal, please review the following.

  • Appealable circumstances.

    Income related appeals for Parents.

    • Unemployment for at least 10 consecutive weeks in 2014.
    • A loss of untaxed income that was reported on the FAFSA.
    • A loss of unemployment benefits in 2014 that were reported to the IRS for 2013.
    • A married parent, who became divorced, separated or widowed in 2014 since filing the FAFSA.
    • Medical appeals for out of pocket medical/dental expenses incurred and paid in 2013 that exceeded 11% of your 2013 Adjusted Gross Income (AGI).
    • Unexpected and uncontrollable circumstance (i.e. damage from a natural disaster) causing you to take an early distribution from a retirement fund that was reported to the IRS for 2013.
    • Loss of home and/or vehicle due to a natural disaster.

    Income related appeals for Students.

    • A decrease in income from 2013 to 2014.
    • A loss of untaxed income that was reported on the FAFSA.
    • A loss of unemployment benefits in 2014 that were reported to the IRS for 2013.
    • An independent married student, who became divorced, separated or widowed in 2014 since filing the FAFSA.

    Examples of circumstances not likely to be considered for an appeal:

    • Private school tuition.
    • Debt (mortgages, consumer debt and bankruptcy).
  • Who can appeal?

    Parents/Step Parents who are on the FAFSA of a dependent undergraduate student.

    Dependent Students

    Independent Students

Next Step:

If you wish to further discuss appeal options or request the Change of Income Appeal Form, our Student Central Representatives will be happy to review your circumstances and advise you accordingly.

Student Central on Union
408 N Union Street
Bloomington, IN 47405
812.855.0321

Cost of Attendance Appeals

If you can document expenses in excess of the Estimated Cost of Attendance, you may be eligible for additional financial aid. In some cases, you might be able to borrow additional loans if you have not exhausted your annual maximum.

The following expenses may be considered:

  • Additional direct educational expenses, including:
    • Musical instruments
    • Art supplies
    • Tuition beyond the standard amount in the Cost of Attendance
  • Purchase of a personal computer

For independent students, we will also consider:

  • Uninsured medical costs
  • Costs for dependent care
  • Excessive transportation costs (graduate students only)
Dependency Appeals

If you are classified as a dependent on your FAFSA but feel there are circumstances that make you an independent student, you can file a Dependency Appeal.

Such a student may be reclassified as independent (and thus not required to include parental information on the FAFSA) if our office approves a dependency appeal for that student.

This is important: A parent’s inability or unwillingness to pay IU costs is not considered sufficient grounds to honor your appeal.

The student must demonstrate that an irretrievable breakdown in the student-parent relationship, or another extenuating circumstance, has occurred by providing the following documentation detailing their situation:

  1. A signed letter from the student. This letter must explain:
    • If you received funds from either of your parents in the past year, and if so, how much money you received.
    • The last date that you lived with either of your parents.
    • Why you want to be considered independent (including dates and descriptions of specific incidents that led you to consider yourself independent).
    • Specify what funds, other than financial aid, that you used to support yourself in the last year.
  2. A signed letter/letters from a professional that has direct knowledge of your situation (such as a high school counselor, therapist, minister, rabbi, social worker, or other professional). This letter must include:
    • Confirmation of the breakdown or extenuating circumstances in your family.
    • An explanation of their relationship to you and your parents.
    • Their understanding of your family circumstance.
  3. A signed letter from a relative.
    • An explanation of why they believe you should be considered independent (including dates and descriptions of specific incidents).
  4. A signed copy of your 2013 federal income tax return or a Statement of Non-Filing Form.
  5. Any other supporting documents, such as police reports or court orders.

Once all of the required documentation outlined above is collected, please send the Dependency Appeal to our office.

After the documentation is submitted, you will receive a decision in approximately 10-15 business days. The decision timeline may be longer during peak processing times. If a student’s dependency appeal is approved and the student is reclassified as independent, the parental information will be removed from consideration in the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) calculation, and the EFC will be recalculated.

Previous Dependency Appeals

Each year, students who have been reclassified as independent will need to confirm that they still meet the conditions for being an independent student. These students will be sent an email in December containing the link to the Previous Dependency Appeal Confirmation form. The form can also be obtained at Student Central. Students should submit a FAFSA online by March 10, excluding parent information. If it is determined that the student is still independent the FAFSA will be properly coded to indicate the dependency override. This process can take 10-14 business days to complete after the Previous Dependency Appeal Confirmation form is submitted.