The financial aid office is required by federal rules to verify approximately 30% of applicants' family income received in 2017 to process the 2019-20 financial aid application. Verification means that the Financial Aid Office compares the information you entered on the FAFSA or WASFA to the documents to the documents we requested for verification. This verifies the accuracy of your information.
If you are selected for verification, you will be notified which documents you must submit via the Financial Aid Portal located at lowercolumbia.edu/financial-aid/portal. 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. This is a suggested date that helps ensure you will receive your financial aid as timely as possible. If you missed the date, we will still award all eligible financial aid, but it will take a minimum of 3-6 weeks from the date you submitted your documents to receive a financial aid award. This is because the Financial Aid Office is not able to award your financial aid until all documents are received. The last day of the year to submit documents is April 13, 2020.
If you have already been awarded and the school receives an additional FAFSA or WASFA that requires you to be verified, we are still required to verify your income. All future quarters of aid will be held until verification is complete. Award increases, if any, will be available in the Financial Aid Portal at lowercolumbia.edu/finaid. If your aid eligibility is negatively affected, you could owe a repayment of student aid funds. If you owe a repayment of student aid funds, we will mail you a letter.
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.