by Robyn Stewart, former financial aid officer at College of the Holy Cross
If you are a regular reader of the Bright Horizons College Coach blog, you know that students are not required to include information about their non-custodial parent (NCP) on the FAFSA (the Free Application for Federal Student Aid). There are institutions, however, that do collect this information. Over 200 colleges and universities require students to complete a second application called the College Scholarship Service (CSS) Profile, and most of these require students to have their NCP submit income and asset information as part of the student’s aid application.
Financial aid officers understand that getting this information may be difficult or impossible for some students. Since failure to complete the non-custodial parent’s part of an aid application may result in the student losing institutional financial aid dollars, colleges that require non-custodial parent information have a process by which the student can request that the requirement to include NCP information be waived.