Why does the FAFSA (Financial Aid) want my parents' information?

I’m 33 years old, definitely “independent”, and yet:

'Sup with that?

No clue. I’ve filled out FAFSAs for myself and for Airman for the past four years, and to date, neither of us has had to provide parent information.

I’m honestly surprised that they’d single out health professions for that, considering the alleged shortfall of medical personnel. Some states, like Pennsylvania, are throwing money left and right to schools and people to enter nursing programs.

Your best bet is to ask the financial aid office. The rule may not apply to older or married students. They may also be required to provide that information to the state so they can qualify for special funding.

But you should ask your financial aid office.


I don’t understand. Did you simply leave it blank and not get in trouble? Exactly what do you mean, that you didn’t have to provide parent information? The reason I ask is that the parent info is a portion of the standard form, and I do not recall anything in the Directions about “you don’t have to fill it in if such-and-such”.

I hope you weren’t expecing an explanation other than “that’s what the rules say”:



If you’re submitting it online (which I advise), refer to this first. If it determines that you are independent, which it should, you won’t have to include any information about your parents.

Or, perhaps, you can disregard my contribution because it neglected to account for the health-related aspect of the question.

We just leave it blank. According to the FAFSA website through the Department of Education, independent students are not required to provide parent information or get a parent’s signature. “Independent” students are those who are married, on active military duty, or who are over 24 years of age regardless of marital or military status.


You only have to provide parents’ income information if:

  1. You are dependent; or

  2. You are applying for a special program that requires it.



According to GFactor, I was sort of right the first time. The school is requiring that information in order to obtain funding under a federal program for health professions. They may not be able to grant a waiver or exception, but you can still talk to them if getting your parents’ information is a problem.



No, I was hoping for an explanation like, “‘Cause there’s this program called Health Professions Student Loan which the FAFSA determines your eligibility for, and *they *require your parents’ info, even though other FAFSA grants may not.”

But I gleaned that from your answer, so thanks.

I know NOTHING about HPSL, never heard of it ‘till now. Luckily, I’m not technically in the Health (Nursing) program yet - this year is just prerequisites. So I don’t need my parents’ info this year, although next year is a different story. I hope, anyway! If I don’t get *into *nursing school, it’s all beside the point.

Yeah. That’s the ticket. I’d actually come back to post something more like that
There may be other forms of financial aid available for your program that don’t require this information. I’ve got no idea about that. But the hamsters stopped me.

My pleasure.

Good luck.

Yeah, the hamsters are getting squirrely, aren’t they?

Thanks! I’ll take all the luck I can get! The program I want to get into is lottery based, not merit based. (Ugh!) 1 out of 3 applicants get in, so yeah, I need all the luck I can dredge up!