Circumstances not reflected on your FAFSA can affect your ability to pay for your education. As a result, you may be eligible for a Professional Judgment.
Professional Judgment refers to the school’s authority to make adjustments, on a case-by-case basis, to information reported on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) so that the Department of Education can recalculate the Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The purpose of Professional Judgment is to determine an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) that reflects a family’s current financial situation.
A professional judgment can be requested when the parent(s) of a dependent student has one of the following circumstances:
- Reduction or loss of income
- Reduction or loss of nontaxable income
- Death of a parent or spouse
- Exceptional medical/dental expenses
- Other unusual circumstances
To request a Professional Judgment, you should:
- Call or visit the Financial Aid Office. We will be able to assist you with available options by getting a better understanding of your circumstances.
- If a Professional Judgment is needed, we will provide you with the appropriate forms.
- When submitting a Professional Judgment request, be sure to complete all required sections of the form(s) and submit all appropriate documentation as indicated. Incomplete request forms will not be reviewed until we receive all of the required documentation.
- Once a decision is made, the student will be notified of the determination along with any changes that are reflected in the financial aid award for the year.
In some cases, an adjustment does not increase the student’s eligibility for grants or the total amount of aid awarded. Any potential increases in aid eligibility are subject to fund availability.