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2016-17 Special Circumstances Form (120KB)

Filing A Financial Aid Appeal

*2017-18 Special Circumstances Form will not be available until March 2017.

A financial aid appeal is a way for a student and his/her family to communicate with the Financial Aid Office about changes beyond the family’s control that have occurred since the FAFSA was filed or that were not reflected or explained on the FAFSA.

Therefore, if an appeal is approved, financial aid eligibility is re-evaluated for federal aid since in most cases additional institutional aid is not available. Note: Changes in federal financial aid eligibility do not change or affect the New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) award calculated by HESC.    


Eligible Appeal Circumstances

  • Significant or catastrophic loss of family income/benefits (student and/or parent) due to loss of job, retirement or disability.
  • Parent/student who is widowed/separated/divorced after the FAFSA was filed.
  • Necessary medical and/or dental expenses which were paid, but not covered by insurance, and will not be covered by insurance in the future. 
  •  Personal bankruptcy that occurs during the current financial aid year. 
  •  Required increase cost during the students period of enrollment (typically August- May)
    • Additional transportation expenses for students residing outside states other than New York, New Jersey, or Pennsylvania.
    • Additional educationally-related costs due to a disability or unexpected medical cost.
    • Childcare expenses required to attend classes.
    • Additional costs for required research, internship or field study.
    • Additional room charges beyond standard charge when increase in cost is not due to choice of student.
    • Other reasonable, educationally-related expenses reviewed and approved by the   Financial Aid Associate Director or Director at Binghamton University.
  • Other special circumstances outside of the student’s control.


How To File An Appeal

  • File the aid year specific FAFSA (i.e., 2016-17 FAFSA for fall 2016 and spring 2017). Binghamton University’s Federal School Code is 002836.
  • Be admitted to Binghamton University. 
  • Submit a letter explaining your circumstance(s) attached to the Special Circumstances form (120KB) to Financial Aid and Student Records. 
  • Once all information is submitted and an original offer has been calculated, the appeal will be reviewed. The student will be contacted via email within 10 business days of the decision or if additional information is required.
  • Note:  financial aid offers will be available to newly admitted fall students in mid-March, and early November for spring admit students.  Appeals will be reviewed after the offers are made available since they are a re-evaluation of an original offer. 


Ineligible Appeal Circumstances

  • Personal choice decisions – i.e., assets exhausted due to family vacation, new car, income property, high mortgage payments, or credit card expenses.
  • Income level is already too high and an appeal would not change outcome.
  • Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as determined by the U.S. Department of Education after filing the FAFSA is already zero (0) – in which case the student is already eligible for the maximum amount for federal student aid, such as grants and loans.
  • Note:  filing an appeal is not a guarantee of approval or additional aid. 


Last Updated: 11/28/16