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Author Topic: Difficulty with Need Access  (Read 3647 times)

knicksfan0323

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2007, 05:40:27 PM »
I'm having a really hard time with all the 2007 estimates they want filled in.  How am I supposed to know how much financial aid I anticipate receiving next year -- isn't this why I'm filling out the wretched form in the first place? 

Also, the way they have things broken down into academic year and summer categories is confusing because I'm going to be leaving my job about halfway through the summer but I'm not exactly sure when, so I really don't know how much my earnings for June through either mid-July or early August will be.  Yet I have to plug in both my estimated earnings for the year and my estimated summer earnings, even though the summer earnings will be included in the whole amount and I don't know what either of those amounts are.  I won't know how much student health insurance will be until the school tells me, yet they require an estimate of that -- my current insurance through work is awesome and cheap, so I don't know what it's like anywhere else.  And on, and on, and on.

Is anyone else experiencing this, or am I just particularly dumb about this stuff?  This form is horrible and the website doesn't give any real instructions about anything.  Argh.  Help!?!

Are you sure it's asking you how much financial aid you'll receive next year? I filled my form out last night and, horrible though it was, I don't remember that question. It definitely asked about financial aid during undergrad, though.
I HATE the needaccess form. It makes absolutely no sense. My parents are divorced and I'm not sure where I should be filling out what.

And to make matters worse, my mom is disabled and I support her 100% financially. She lives with me and my husband and I have no idea how to account for that.

You should be listing her as a dependent on your taxes, the FAFSA, and Need Access (but you can only have dependents if you yourself are not being claimed as a dependent by anyone else). Beyond that, I would indicate in the "special circumstances" area of the form (the very last box they ask you to fill in, both on the student's and parents' form) that she's disabled. You might also want to call the Fin Aid offices of the schools you're applying to -- this sounds like a pretty big issue.

I do list her as a dependent on my taxes and Fafsa. I am definetely not claimed as a dependent by anyone. My Mom is actually going to call NeedAcess to figure out how to handle this.

32s. Number of Family Members
Enter the number of people that the parents will support between July 1, 2007, and June 30, 2008. Include AT LEAST the following (always INCLUDE the student applicant, even if the student applicant does not live with the parents): 3 = 2 parents (married) + student applicant 2 = 1 parent (single/divorced/sep/widowed) + student applicant Include other people only if they now live with and get more than half their support from the parents, and will continue to get this support between July 1, 2007, and June 30, 2008. Support includes money, gifts, loans, housing, food, clothes, vehicle, medical and dental care, payment of college costs, etc. If the student is completing this section for the parents, be sure not to include any dependents of the student. This question is for dependents of the parents


Thanks for all of the advice guys, I really appreciate it!

RedWine

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2007, 11:13:52 PM »

Are you sure it's asking you how much financial aid you'll receive next year? I filled my form out last night and, horrible though it was, I don't remember that question. It definitely asked about financial aid during undergrad, though.


I *think* that the amount of financial aid you receive in excess of tuition, fees, and books (i.e. living expenses) is considered taxable income.  I could be wrong, but question 4v seems to indicate this.  Anyone who knows differently, please chime in!

RedWine

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #12 on: January 15, 2007, 11:35:17 PM »
I remember from undergrad that any scholarships and grants not used to pay for tuition/fees/books had to be claimed.  However, since my college was primarily residential, all of our living expenses were included in the cost of attendance that the school based financial aid on, sort of like a student budget at law school.  Since we were living on campus and eating in the dining hall, the money awarded by the school as grants still went directly back to them -- since it never actually came to me, and I didn't have to worry about it on my taxes.  I'm not sure how this works with graduate studies and living off-campus, though, so that's what I'm confused about.  I guess I'll just put zero on the assumption that I don't have any grants or scholarships at the moment, and stop worrying.  And contact my undergrad to see if they can still tell me how much I received in grants from them, because that's something I've long since forgotten.

perfect pint

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2007, 02:47:37 PM »
Can you estimate 2006 tax info on Need Access? I know that for FAFSA you can estimate 2006 info and just update it when you actually file your taxes, but does anyone know if this is also the case for Need Access?

Also, is there some kind of deadline by which you must update it? My dad tells me he always gets an extension and doesn't file until August, so that seems like that would be a problem, no?

Much thanks for anyone who can help!

RedWine

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #14 on: January 16, 2007, 03:05:46 PM »
I don't know about estimates/updates, but Penn's deadline for filing the Need Access is March 1st.  My parents aren't even doing their taxes until mid-March.  So either they accept the estimate or I don't go to Penn (if I even get in).

Jackie Chiles, ESQ.

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2007, 07:17:34 PM »
do schools want us to wait until we know if we are going or not? or fill it out anyway?

zephyr

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2007, 07:21:41 PM »
do schools want us to wait until we know if we are going or not? or fill it out anyway?

no, do it anyway.
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Electric Counterpoint

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #17 on: January 21, 2007, 04:31:48 PM »

Are you sure it's asking you how much financial aid you'll receive next year? I filled my form out last night and, horrible though it was, I don't remember that question. It definitely asked about financial aid during undergrad, though.


I *think* that the amount of financial aid you receive in excess of tuition, fees, and books (i.e. living expenses) is considered taxable income.  I could be wrong, but question 4v seems to indicate this.  Anyone who knows differently, please chime in!

Yes, regrettably, it is taxable. If you're not sure exactly what the sum is, I think it's on the 1098-T from your university.
Former mostly-anonymous admissions cycle blogger. Current law student.

RedWine

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #18 on: January 21, 2007, 11:25:57 PM »
Yes, regrettably, it is taxable. If you're not sure exactly what the sum is, I think it's on the 1098-T from your university.

I'm not in school anymore so I don't have to worry about 2006, but the question I referred to on NeedAccess asks (in the fine print) what you estimate the taxable portion of your financial aid for 2007 will be, which I won't know until they tell me what my financial aid will be...round robin, round robin.  Blech.

mufich

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Re: Difficulty with Need Access
« Reply #19 on: January 22, 2007, 01:26:10 AM »
Can you estimate 2006 tax info on Need Access? I know that for FAFSA you can estimate 2006 info and just update it when you actually file your taxes, but does anyone know if this is also the case for Need Access?

Also, is there some kind of deadline by which you must update it? My dad tells me he always gets an extension and doesn't file until August, so that seems like that would be a problem, no?

Much thanks for anyone who can help!

Good question. I don't know the answer, but I'm just going to wait until I get my W-2s  -- hopefully it'll be done then before mid February, which I think is early enough...
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