Dependency Override

Students who do not meet any of the criteria to be considered an Independent Student on the FAFSA, or who are experiencing unusual or extenuating circumstances that prevent them from listing parental information can apply for a Dependency Override Appeal.

Documentation related to the appeal will be requested once the appeal email is received by the Department of Financial Aid. We cannot accept this documentation via email or fax. The Dashboard is the most secure and fastest method to submit documentation to our office. Circumstances we are able to consider (with appropriate documentation):

  • Voluntary/Involuntary removal from the parents’ home due to an abusive situation that threatens the student’s mental or physical health
  • Incarceration of both parents.
  • Incarceration or Death of the custodial parent and the whereabouts of the non-custodial parent are unknown.
  • Whereabouts of both parents are unknown, and another person has legal custody of the student.
  • Circumstances listed below do not, either individually or in combination, qualify as unusual circumstances for a Dependency Override:
    • Parent(s) refuse to contribute to the student’s education.
    • Parent(s) are unwilling to provide information on the FAFSA or documents for the Verification process.
    • Parent(s) do not claim the student as a dependent for income tax purposes.
    • Parent(s) live overseas.
    • The student is self-sufficient.

Required Documentation:

  • A signed, typed personal statement summarizing the current extenuating circumstances that prevent you from including parental information on the FAFSA. The statement must include the names of both biological parents, relevant dates of contact and all other important details of your situation that will support the appeal.

Third-Party documentation (someone outside of the family) – signed, typed statement from at least one person outside of your family that has knowledge of your extenuating circumstances. All statements must be uploaded on official letterhead with a signature, contact information and date. Acceptable third parties include but are not limited to the following:

  • Counselors or Teachers
  • Clergy or Community Groups
  • Government Agencies
  • Medical Personnel
  • Courts or Prison Administrators
  • All other documentation that supports your extenuating circumstance. Please note, the Office of Student Financial Services may request other documentation that is specific to your situation.

Appeals are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. If approved, it is important to note that the financial aid offer might not be enough funding to cover the cost to attend Fort Valley State University. It is very possible that additional funding will be needed to assist with the outstanding balance. For information on the cost to attend, see the cost of attendance for Fort Valley State University on the website

Dependency Overrides do not automatically renew year-to-year, therefore students are required to request a new appeal each academic year.