Family and Household Status
In determining your financial aid eligibility, we start with your family and household unit
- It is Princeton’s policy to require information from both parents in order to determine eligibility for financial aid
- Both parents' information must be reported on the PFAA and FAFSA
- If you live in your home with two parents, this will be your family and household unit for financial aid
- This is the case whether your parents are married or unmarried as long as they live together
- This is also the case if you live with a parent and a stepparent
- One or both of your parents may work in a geographically distant location and may live in a separate home in that location for work purposes—you will still report both parents' information on the PFAA and FAFSA
- What if my parents are divorced/separated/never married and live in separate households?
- The parent with whom you live most of the time is your custodial parent for financial aid
- Your custodial parent's information will be used on the PFAA and the FAFSA
- Your other parent is your noncustodial parent for financial aid
- Your noncustodial parent must submit the Noncustodial Parent's Form—there are three versions:
- Non-custodial forms and tax documents may be uploaded to your financial aid portal, faxed or mailed to our office
- Under exceptional circumstances, the noncustodial parent's information may be waived at our office's discretion
- Only in the case of certain extenuating circumstances may the noncustodial parent requirement be waived
- Applicants may receive consideration for a waiver by submitting the Noncustodial Parent Waiver Request Form
- This form, along with the required substantiating statements, may be uploaded after you submit the PFAA.
- Circumstances under which an aid applicant will be considered independent for financial aid purposes
It is Princeton's policy to require information from the applicant's parent(s) for the purposes of determining University financial aid eligibility. Princeton applicants are considered financially dependent upon their parent(s), unless they meet one of the criteria below:
- Applicant is over age 25 and has lived as a self-supporting adult for at least two years.
- Applicant is under 25 but married and/or has dependent children and has lived as a self-supporting adult while married or with dependent children for at least two years.
- Applicant is/was an orphan not later legally adopted or placed in legal guardianship (unless the guardianship placement was within the last two years).
- Applicant is/was a ward of the court not later legally adopted or placed in legal guardianship (unless the guardianship placement was within the last two years).
- Applicant has been in legal guardianship for less than two years due to parental neglect, abandonment, and/or abuse documentation.
- Applicant is a veteran of the United States Armed Forces.
- A dependency override grants an applicant, who does not meet the above criteria and would otherwise be considered dependent, independent status for financial aid purposes only. Parental unwillingness to pay for college or complete the aid application will not be considered for a dependency override.
- If you think you would qualify for a dependency override, submit the PFAA by selecting the Self-supporting Student option and provide a brief explanation on the form of your situation. Once you are admitted, the Undergraduate Financial Aid Office will reach out and provide you with the Dependency Override Request Form to be considered for an override.
- It is Princeton's policy to require information from the applicant's parent(s) for the purposes of determining University financial aid eligibility. Princeton applicants are considered financially dependent upon their parent(s), unless they meet one of the criteria below: