In accordance with federal regulations, the Financial Aid & Scholarships Office may take into account special circumstance(s) that affects the family's ability to pay for a college education that are not reflected in the information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Financial Aid administrators can make adjustments to a student's expected family contribution (EFC) for education expenses and/or financial aid dependency status as determined by federal guidelines. These adjustments are only made after receiving sufficient documentation from a student to justify an exception to normal federal financial aid program guidelines.
Significant changes in your family's income may merit recalculating your financial aid eligibility. Please review the information below to determine if you have an eligible reason for a Change of Circumstance Request.
Eligible Reasons for a Change of Circumstance Request
Note: We recommend graduate students apply for a Graduate PLUS loan if they are seeking additional funding.
The U.S. Department of Education determines your student dependency status based on the information you provided in the FAFSA. In certain situations, students may submit an appeal to CSUSM requesting that their dependency status to be overridden. CSUSM will use this process to review your situation and determine if you are eligible to be considered an independent student. A petition can only be approved in certain limited and exceptional circumstances.
Important Notice: The unwillingness and/or inability of your parents to financially support you and/or living on your own and paying your own bills are not by themselves reasons that demonstrate "exceptional circumstances" and cannot be considered.
1. A signed and dated statement that includes a complete history of
2. Two signed and dated letters from professionals (on their letterhead) documenting their first-hand knowledge of your exceptional circumstance. The Financial Aid & Scholarships Office may contact these references for additional information or clarification of your situation.
To begin the process, please contact the Financial Aid Office. We will discuss your situation and provide instructions on how to begin the process.