Should I Apply for FAFSA if My Parents Make a Lot of Money?


If you think you can’t get financial aid for college because your parents make too much money, it’s worth your time to fill out the FAFSA, aka the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.


Eligibility for financial aid depends on a number of factors (we’ll explain in a minute), but families who assume their income is too high to qualify for need-based aid could be leaving a pile of free money and low-interest loans on the table by neglecting to fill out their financial information.

Do you think your parents make too much money for you to qualify for financial aid? We’re here to explain why you should still submit the FAFSA — and how you may still get money for the school year that’s drawing to an end if you apply by the June 30 deadline.

The FAFSA is the form you use to report family information used to determine your federal financial aid package, including student loans, scholarships, grants and work-study.

Should I Apply for FAFSA?

Yes. Regardless of your or your parents’ income, you should fill out a FAFSA application. Federal student aid doesn’t have an income cut-off and additional factors are taken into consideration. Plus, the FAFSA may be required for merit-based awards you qualify for.

Why Does My Parents’ Income Matter for FAFSA Anyways?

If you’re the one going to college and paying for it, why does your parents’ income matter?

Yeah, you might want to take that up with your Uncle Sam.

Even if you’re paying 100% of your college expenses, living on your own and filing your own taxes, you’ll still need to include your parents’ info if you don’t meet the FAFSA criteria for an independent student. Here’s the list of questions to determine your FAFSA dependency status.

Pro Tip

If there’s any question about whose information to include on your application, check out the Department of Education’s rulesfor determining who your parent is when it comes to filling out the FAFSA.

If you…


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