Marriage and Federal Financial Aid
You have the possibility of updating your marital status on your original FAFSA, if your marital status changes on or before June 30th of the academic year in which you want aid. For many students, updating their marital status increases federal student aid eligibility, including qualifying for a Pell Grant— especially if they were required to report parent information on your FAFSA originally and/or were not Pell Grant eligible. However, in some situations, updating one's marital status can lead to a decrease in eligibility.
If you have already submitted a FAFA for the academic year, you will need to make changes to your existing FAFSA. Do not submit a new FAFSA.
To understand the timing and help you decide whether updating your marital status on the FAFSA is beneficial, we strongly encourage to attend the Marriage and Financial Aid Workshop through Enrollment Services.
To be considered for an update to your marital status on the FAFSA and receive federal financial aid for prior terms in the academic year, you must:
- Be currently enrolled or have enrollment in a future semester/term in the academic year (fall-summer)
- Be married and update/submit your FAFSA before the FAFSA deadline of June 30th
Note: If you submitted a FAFSA as a dependent, got married before June 30th and are enrolled in summer term, you can still update your FAFSA with your marital status. Your FAFSA must be updated before the end of your summer term enrollment.
Any additional Pell Grant you may become eligible for will be awarded retroactively. If you are married after June 30th and are attending the upcoming school year, you can update your marital status on that year’s FAFSA.
We strongly advise you to consider your options carefully before filing your FAFSA or making any changes, especially since updating your marital status in some situations may decrease federal aid eligibility.
When Submitting the Marital Status Updates
When submitting an update to your marital status, you will receive emails from the federal government advising you that updating your marital status after the date you originally submitted your FAFSA is not allowed, unless the changes were reported incorrectly or you were instructed to make the change by a financial aid administrator. However, if you updated your marital status on the FAFSA because you meet the Financial Aid Office's requirements to be considered for the update, you can disregard those emails.
If you have tried to edit your FAFSA and cannot continue past the “Student Financials” section, please send us a YMessage. Please contact Enrollment Services if you have any other questions about updating your FAFSA after getting married.
Things to Consider
- If you are already considered to be independent on the FAFSA and are receiving a Pell Grant, there may not be an advantage to updating your marital status. Check MyAid Dashboard for your Pell Grant award and breakdown.
- Independent students do not report parental income on the FAFSA, therefore, independent students frequently, but not always appear to have more financial need.
- Use the FAFSA 4Caster to help determine whether to apply before or after your wedding. Supply the data first as if you are single, then as if you are married, and compare the estimated eligibility. Remember, the results are simply estimates.