What Is a FAFSA Special Circumstance Re-Evaluation & Why Might You Need One

The FAFSA uses federal tax information from two years prior to create your current financial aid award. 

Due to recent events or other personal changes, your federal tax information from two years prior may no longer be representative of your current circumstances. The FAFSA Special Circumstance re-evaluation process allows our office to review for potential changes to your FAFSA information. Some examples of these changes could be:

  • Loss or reduction of employment/income
  • Household size changes (death of parent or spouse; or addition of persons)
  • Marital Status Changes
  • One-time income distributions
  • Other relevant circumstances
  • Additional family members in college 

The special circumstance re-evaluation process is different and distinct from the verification process. The verification process ensures all financial aid is awarded according to federal and state regulations, and MUST be completed before any federal financial aid, including federal student loans, and certain State and institutional aid, can be finalized. 

You may begin the special circumstance re-evaluation process at any time however, the verification process is required to be completed first. Continue to submit any requested documents to the Financial Aid Office. Please monitor your MyNMU under the Financial Aid tile and your NMU email to check for communication regarding your re-evaluation. 

For dependent students please use the Parent Special Circumstance Re-evaluation, for independent students please use Student Special Circumstance Re-evaluation.

What happens next?

Any student may submit a special circumstance re-evaluation request to the financial aid office. The forms can be found here

We will act on your request for re-evaluation only after receiving all verification and supporting documentation which confirms your circumstances. Please be aware that a re-evaluation request does not guarantee an increase in your financial aid. An increase in financial aid eligibility depends on the availability of funds and demonstrated financial need. A decision on your request may take several weeks to complete, and additional documents may be requested.