Financial aid staff are required by federal rules to verify many applicants' family income received in 2016 to process the 2018-19 financial aid application.
Verification means that the Financial Aid Office compares the information on the documents you submitted to the information you entered on your FAFSA for accuracy.
If you are selected for verification you will be notified which documents you must submit for verification via the Financial Aid Portal located at lowercolumbia.edu/financial-aid/portal or in person. The security of your personally identifiable information is extremely important to us. NEVER email your verification documents or any documents that include your personal information. Personal information is any information that could be used to steal your identity or obtain additional information about you for the purposes of stealing your identity. The deadline to submit documents for verification is also the Last Day for an Administrative Hold and is published on the financial aid webpage of the LCC website under Important Financial Aid Key Dates and Deadlines. The Financial Aid Office will not be able to award your financial aid until all documents are received. The last day of the year to submit documents is April 6, 2018.
If you have already been awarded and the school receives an additional FAFSA that requires you to be verified, the school is required to verify your income. All future quarters of aid will be held until verification is complete. Award changes, if any, will be available in the Financial Aid Portal located at lowercolumbia.edu/financial-aid/portal. Your aid eligibility could also be affected retroactively to the quarter you began attending in the current academic year, and you could owe a repayment of student aid funds.
The following documents may be required. Only submit the documents we have requested via the Financial Aid Portal:
You are considered an independent applicant for financial aid purposes if you answered 'yes' to any FAFSA question #45-57. You may be asked to submit proof of your ability to meet these independency questions. Examples of documents that may be required are: marriage certificate, birth certificate, DD214, statements of support, court documents, statements from agencies such as Child Protective Services, and homeless or runaway shelters.
You may also be considered an independent applicant for financial aid purposes if you have exceptional or extraordinary family circumstances. If you believe you have exceptional or extraordinary circumstances, and you want to request the financial aid administrator use professional judgment to designate you as an independent applicant for financial aid purposes, obtain a Request for Independency form from the Financial Aid Office. Provide documents and specific information concerning your claim that you are an independent applicant in accordance with the request form. The U.S. Department of Education has already ruled that the following factors do not justify independency: you do not live with your parents, they refuse to support you, provide their income information and/or documents, or they have not claimed you as an exemption on their last federal income tax return.