The University of Northern Iowa Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships understands that families can experience hardship or changes that are not reflected within the FAFSA. This can affect the family or student’s ability to contribute to educational expenses.
The U.S. Department of Education regulations permit financial aid offices to determine different types of circumstances that may warrant review. To ensure accuracy and compliance with federal financial aid regulations, all circumstances will be considered on a case by case basis.
Things to Know
The FAFSA must already be on file in order to inquire about a special circumstance.
You will also be required to complete verification before an appeal is processed.
Documentation will be requested and required to support any special circumstance appeal. Further documentation may be required based on new information found in the appeal.
In some cases, we may find that an appeal would not cause a change in the financial aid award, in which case the appeal would be canceled.
To start the process, please contact our office to evaluate your situation.
The maximum amount of financial aid you can receive is limited to your total Cost of Attendance. If you have accepted financial aid up to the total Cost of Attendance but still need additional funding, contact our office to inquire about a budget adjustment.
If a budget adjustment is approved, we would increase your Cost of Attendance, which may allow you to receive more financial aid. Keep in mind, additional funding would most likely be in the form of a federal or private education loan.
Below is a list of circumstances for which a budget adjustment may be considered. This is not an exhaustive list and other situations may be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
- Computer purchase
- Commuting expenses
- Car repairs
- Child care expenses (to learn more about additional child care assistance opportunities, please visit the Iowa Department of Human Services website)