This is a great board. Feel free to refer me to relevant threads, but I’m really looking for individual stories (details disguised, PM ok, of course), as I already have the general idea.
I am 32, applying for fall 2012, genuinely financially independent, single in LTR, not making much money, substantial debt from a recent educational DEBACLE, frugal habits.
I have two sets of parents/stepparents. Debatable whether either of them will actually fill out the parent info on the FAFSA.
My mother and stepfather’s info would probably disqualify me from most grant aid. They do not plan to help except for the occasional plane ticket, etc…
My father and stepmother’s info would certainly disqualify me from any sort of aid whatsoever. But I have not been on speaking terms with them since 1998.
- Would parents that have the $ to pay out of pocket (even if they won’t) disqualify me from the Primary Care Loan, subsidized Stafford, etc.?
- The few schools that do have merit aid (mirthless laugh)–do they require parent info. even for that? Yes, I know it varies by school, but maybe someone can speak from experience.
- Is it worth having, e.g., my estranged father sign a letter, “here’s my financial info, I’m giving it so that my daughter won’t automatically be disqualified, I wish her the best, not giving her a dime”?
- Overall, worth stirring the pot? In other words, I don’t want to start a multiple-year thing with either set if their good fortune (and decades of hard work) will just make the aid question moot. As you can imagine, it’s not as easy as “just get them to submit the info and see what happens.” If that were how it was, I wouldn’t be posting.
I’d appreciate any insight you can offer. (Please refrain from the poor-little-rich-girl flames–thanks!