Federal Financial Aid
WHAT IS FINANCIAL AID?
Financial Aid consists of funding provided through federal and state governments and institutional sources to help cover educational expenses. This funding consists of grants and scholarships that do not have to be paid back to the provider and loans that have a variety of repayment options.
ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS FOR FINANCIAL AID
- To qualify for federal financial assistance, you must:
- Enroll as a degree-seeking student
- Be a U.S. citizen or an eligible noncitizen
- Maintain satisfactory academic progress
- Not be in default on a federal educational loan
- Not owe an overpayment on a federal educational grant or loan
- Register with Selective Service (if you are a male born on or after January 1, 1960, over 18 years of age and not currently in the armed forces)
- Have a high school diploma or equivalent
DETERMINE YOUR DEPENDENCY STATUS
The federal government has established how dependency status is determined for federal financial aid purposes. If you are considered dependent, your parent(s) income and asset information must be included on your FAFSA. This information will be used in addition to your information to determine your eligibility. Answering "yes" to any of the following questions means you are an independent student:
- Were you born before January 1, 1993?
- As of today, are you married?
- At the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year, will you be working on a master's or doctorate program?
- Are you currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training?
- Are you a veteran of the U.S. armed forces?
- Do you have children who will receive more than half of their support from you between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017?
- Do you have dependents (other than your children or spouse) who live with you and who receive more than half of their support from you, now and through June 30, 2017?
- When you were age 13 or older, were both your parents deceased, were you in foster care or were you a dependent/ward of the court?
- Are you or were you an emancipated minor or in legal guardianship as determined by a court in your state of legal residence?
- At any time on or after July 1, 2015, were you an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or at risk of being homeless?
BEULAH HEIGHTS UNIVERSITY VERIFICATION PROCESS
- Verification of data policies and procedures apply to all federal Title IV Programs (Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant, and Direct Stafford Loan Program).
- All applications with an asterisk as well as applications based on estimated tax data and individual with questionable data selected at the discretion of the Financial Aid Director will be verified. Applicants selected for verification must provide requested documentation within 30 days of the date of the request.
- Requested documentation not returned within 360 days will result in the closing of the student's financial aid file. No Title IV funds will be awarded unless there is remaining funds for which the student is eligible.
- Upon receipt of the requested documentation, the Financial Aid Director will review the information. When the information is verified, the student will be notified in regard to his/her financial aid eligibility, or ineligibility. If the review results in changes, correction, or updating of information, the student will be notified as to the necessary procedures to follow.
- The student is responsible for sending the form back to the Central Processor for the necessary corrections. Students suspected of reporting fraudulent information or knowingly not reporting information will be reported by the Financial Aid Office to the US Regional Office of the inspector General, or to the appropriate state or local law enforcement agency.
- Household size and number enrolled in college (including other institutions) must be accurate as of the date the applicant submits the documentation to the Financial Aid Office at BHU.
- Items to be verified, according to the federal regulations are:
- Adjusted gross income and taxes paid for the base year.
- Independent student status
- Household size: Dependent students must report the names and number of family members in parent's household, including the student. The independent students must report the names and number of family members, including student, in the household of the student.
- Names and number of family that are enrolled at least half-time other colleges and the name of the college. Untaxed income and benefits for the base year from: Social Security, child support, foreign income exclusion, deductions from IRA and/or Keogh plans, and earned income credit.
- After verification if your Expected Family Contribution number (EFC) is over (5,000) the amount is subjected to changed. If the amount is less than (5,000) a student may qualify for whole or partial Pell award.
VERIFICATION FOR FEDERAL STUDENT AID ELIGIBILITY
The federal government requires colleges and universities to verify, or confirm, the data reported by students and their parent(s) on the FAFSA. The verification process ensures that eligible students receive all the financial aid to which they are entitled and prevents ineligible students from receiving financial aid to which they are not entitled. A subset of financial aid applications are randomly selected by the US Department of Education for verification. If a student is selected for verification, there is an asterisk next to the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) on the Student Aid Report (SAR). The SAR may be viewed online at www.fafsa.gov under Step 3: “View and Print Your Student Aid Report".
Applications selected for verification are placed into Verification Tracking Groups (V1 – V5). The SAR indicates with a tracking flag for which group the student has been selected. Items to be verified are based on the specific Verification Tracking Group. If a student is selected for verification, the Financial Aid Office notifies the student of required documentation. The student (and parent(s) of dependent students), are required to provide appropriate and legible supporting documents to the Financial Aid Office. Depending on the category selected, one or more of the following documents may be requested:
- IRS Tax Return Transcript or use of IRS Data Retrieval Process;
- Documentation of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), if applicable;
- Documentation of child support paid, if applicable;
- Documentation of other untaxed income, if applicable;
- Verification of high school completion (or equivalent), if applicable; and,
- Identity and Statement of Educational Purpose, if applicable.
Please note that additional documents may be requested at the Financial Aid Office’s discretion.
Participation in the verification process is not optional. Students with verification categories of V1 – V3, and V6, who do not submit the required documentation within 30 days of request may experience financial aid processing delays, and may be administratively withdrawn until all supporting verification documents have been received by the University’s Financial Aid Office. New online students who are selected for the customized verification categories of V4 or V5 must submit the required Identity and Statement of Educational Purpose documentation prior to progressing beyond conditional admission status or they will be administratively withdrawn prior to attending week four of their first course. Any other required documentation must be completed within 30 days of request. Continuing online students who are selected for the customized verification categories of V4 or V5 must submit the Identity and Statement of Educational Purpose within 14 days of notification and any other requested documentation within 30 days.
If clarification is needed on a verification document or the Student Aid Report, an advisor from the Financial Aid Office will contact the student for additional information. Possible corrections may be required on the SAR. If a student’s financial aid award in any way changes as a result of verification, a new award letter is generated and will be available via the portal to view or print. Verification Worksheets can be obtained from the Financial Aid Office or on the Student Portal. Financial aid will not be processed or disbursed if an applicant fails to provide the appropriate and legible verification documentation.