The FAFSA can be difficult for non-traditional families. For students with deceased parents, universities may require death certificates or other proof, and the financial aid application process may be emotionally difficult for grieving students.
For the FAFSA, do not report your deceased parent’s income.
If your deceased parent was your custodial parent and you are not financially dependent on your non-custodial parent, you may be eligible for a dependency override.
If your parent has died after you have submitted the FAFSA, contact your school immediately and let them know.
» MORE: Your FAFSA questions answered
Steps for filling out the FAFSA if you have a deceased parent
- Submit financial information for your remaining parent, including their income and assets.
- Do not submit your deceased parent’s financial information, even if they died within the past year and you have their tax returns and financial documents.
- If your parent died after you submitted your FAFSA, submit a correction updating your information. Contact your university’s financial aid office and explain your situation; see if they have university-specific advice or protocols. They are likely to ask you to submit a death certificate.
Advice from University Financial Aid Officers
Student with a deceased parent should contact the Financial Aid Office at the school of their choice.
— Amy Cable, Director of Financial Aid at Mid-South Community College