Financial Aid Menu

Financial Aid Frequently Asked Questions

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FAFSA
Financial Aid
Loans
Taxes
Enrollment - Withdrawl or Fail
Parent Assistance
Marriage

Answers To...

FAFSA

What is FAFSA
How do I apply for FAFSA
What type of aid is available through FAFSA
How long does it take FAFSA to process my application and send it to MSSU
If I miss the priority deadline, can I still file a FAFSA
Do I have to apply for FAFSA every year
Should I wait to file my FAFSA until my taxes are done
What is the EFC
I'm going to marry during the school year can I fill out my FAFSA as married now
I am really independent, why do I have to use my parents information on my FAFSA
What if my parents don't claim me on their tax forms, do I need to include their information on the FAFSA
What if I cannot get my parent(s) tax information and PIN

Financial Aid

What type of aid is available through FAFSA
Who is eligible for financial aid
How and when will I receive my financial aid at Missouri Southern
Do I have to be enrolled full-time to receive financial aid
I have not been accepted at MSSU yet, do I have to wait until I am admitted before I apply for financial aid
What happens to my financial aid if I drop classes after I receive my financial aid
Can I get financial aid for the summer
How do I apply for Access Missouri Grant

Loans

Are loans considered financial aid
What is the difference between a subsidized loan and an unsubsidized loan
Who is eligible to receive federal student loans
How do I apply for a federal student loan
How and when will I receive my financial aid at Missouri Southern
How will I be notified of my financial aid award
When do federal student loans have to repaid
How much can I borrow

Taxes

Should I wait to file my FAFSA until my taxes are done
I or my parents filed a joint tax return but are now separated, divorced, or widowed. How do I answer the tax questions
What if my parents don't claim me on their tax forms, do I need to include their information on the FAFSA
What if I cannot get my parent(s) tax information and PIN
What if I or my parents are not required to file a tax return

Enrollment - Drop/Withdrawl or Fail

What happens to my financial aid if I drop classes after I receive my financial aid
What happens if I withdraw from all of my classes at MSSU
What happens if I fail some or all of my classes

Parental Assistance

I am really independent, why do I have to use my parents information on my FAFSA
What if my parent remarries
What if my parents don't claim me on their tax forms, do I need to include their information on the FAFSA
What if I cannot get my parent(s) tax information and PIN
What if I or my parents are not required to file a tax return
I or my parents filed a joint tax return but are now separated, divorced, or widowed. How do I answer the tax questions

Marriage

What if my parent remarries
I'm going to marry during the school year can I fill out my FAFSA as married now

 What is FAFSA?

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)  is the application students use to apply for federal aid assistance.

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How do I apply for FAFSA?

You may apply for FAFSA online at www.fafsa.ed.gov or you may print a paper copy at the same website. The online application will process in 7 to 10 days. A paper copy will require 6 to 8 weeks to process.  You may also apply by telephone at 1 (800) 433-3243.

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Who is eligible for financial aid?

    1. You must be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
    2. You must be enrolled at least half-time in a degree-seeking program.
    3. You must not be in default on any educational loan or have a grant overpayment.
    4. You must be in good academic and financial aid standing at MSSU.

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Should I wait to file my FAFSA until my taxes are done?

If your taxes will not be done until after the priority deadline of April 1st, then you should file your FAFSA and indicate on it that you “Will File.” Then, when you have a copy of your Federal 1040 Tax form available you may sign into your FAFSA online and make corrections or access the IRS Data Retrieval tool. It is important to make corrections and submit any required documentation by May 1st.

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What if I or my parents are not required to file a tax return?

Answer the question, “Have you completed a tax return” by checking the box “Not going to file” for you and/or your parents. If you did have earnings from work but were not required to file, you will enter the amount from your W-2 forms in “Income earned from work.”

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I have not been accepted at MSSU yet, do I have to wait until I am admitted before I apply for financial aid?

No. Apply as soon as possible after January 1st and list the federal school codes for all schools you are considering. You will not receive a financial aid award letter until you have been accepted to MSSU and meet all other requirements.
MSSU federal school code
: 002488.

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Can I get financial aid for the summer?

Yes. Students who have not used their maximum allowed aid during the fall and spring semesters will be eligible for summer aid. You must have a FAFSA for the current academic year on file with the Financial Aid Office.

You must also complete a Summer Aid Request after March 1st.

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Do I have to apply for FAFSA every year?

Yes. You are required to apply for each year you plan on enrolling at a college/university and expect to receive financial aid. The priority deadline for Missouri Southern State University is April 1. If any other documentation is required you must submit it by May 1.

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If I miss the priority deadline, can I still file a FAFSA?

Yes. However, if you miss the priority deadline, there is no guarantee that you will receive your award letter before fees are due and you may need to sign up for the Monthly Tuition Pay Plan until your aid is awarded.
Also, you will be ineligible for some state funding that may otherwise be available.

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What type of aid is available through FAFSA?

PELL Grant, SEOG (Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant), Stafford Direct Loans (Subsidized and/or Unsubsidized), Perkins loan if available, and Work Study if available.

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How do I apply for Access Missouri Grant?

    1. You must be a Missouri resident.
    2. You must have a FAFSA filed by April 1st.
    3. You must be enrolled full-time (12 or more credit hours).
    4. Your EFC (estimated family contribution) must be less than $12,000.
    5. You must maintain a GPA of 2.5 or above.
    6. You are ineligible for the Access Missouri Grant after 150 attempted credit hours.

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How will I be notified of my financial aid award?

MSSU utilizes electronic notification through Lionet. Once you have been accepted to MSSU, you will receive a student ID number and password. You will need to sign into the student portal called Lionet at www.mssu.edu and go to Financial Aid, select Award and award aid year, and read through the “Terms & Conditions” from the tab at the top of the award screen. You will then be able to view your award offer. You are required to accept, decline, or reduce the amount offered online. No award letters will be mailed.

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How and when will I receive my financial aid at Missouri Southern?

 Missouri Southern has two disbursement dates, one in the fall and one in spring. After the first disbursement two weeks after classes begin, weekly disbursements will be made for students still completing the financial aid process. After your account is paid, any excess financial aid will be mailed to you by check. An accurate mailing address is essential for this process.

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I or my parents filed a joint tax return but are now separated, divorced, or widowed. How do I answer the tax questions?

If you are a dependent student, use only the income from the parent you lived with last. If you are an independent student, use only your income.

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What if my parent remarries?

If they are married as of the day you fill out your FAFSA, you must also use the stepparent information and taxes on your FAFSA.

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I’m going to marry during the school year can I fill out my FAFSA as married now?

 No. Whatever the student’s marital status on the day the FAFSA is submitted will remain the same throughout the academic year. Changes to student marital status are only permitted through the Professional Judgment petition in the Financial Aid Office. And, are done on a case-by-case basis.

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What if my parents don’t claim me on their tax forms, do I need to include their information on the FAFSA?

Yes, you are still considered part of their household unless:

    1. You have reached the year of your 24th birthday.
    2. You have married since filing the previous year’s FAFSA.
    3. You have completed a bachelor’s degree.
    4. You are currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces.
    5. You are a veteran.
    6. You have dependents that you provide at least 50% of their support.
    7. You have been legally emancipated by a court action.
    8. You were at some time after the age of 13 a legal ward of the court or were in foster care.
    9. You were in a court determined legal guardianship situation.
    10. You were documented by government authorities as an unaccompanied homeless youth.
    11. Your parents are recently deceased.

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I am really independent, why do I have to use my parents information on my FAFSA?

You are considered a dependent student for FAFSA purposes if you answer “No” to all Student Dependency Status questions in Section 2 on your FAFSA.

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What if I cannot get my parent(s) tax information and PIN?

If you are a dependent student, your parent information must be included to determine your eligibility for federal aid. Under very limited special circumstances, a dependent student may have an option to appeal their dependency status. Examples of special circumstances include: parents are incarcerated, you left an abusive family environment, you do not know where your parents are and you have not been adopted. Examples of situations that are not included in special circumstances are: your parents do not want to provide their information, your parents refuse to contribute to your college expenses, your parents do not claim you as a dependent, or you do not live with your parents.

Contact your Financial Aid Counselor at Missouri Southern for more information at (417) 625-9325.

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How long does it take FAFSA to process my application and send it to MSSU?

It usually takes approximately 7 – 10 days for MSSU to receive your FAFSA. If additional documents are needed by the MSSU Financial Aid Office, you will be contacted. When the FAFSA is complete and accurate, a counselor will then determine your aid eligibility and post the award in Lionet.

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What is the EFC?

The EFC is the Estimated Family Contribution. You will find this number on your Student Aid Report (SAR) that you get from FAFSA. The EFC is the number that determines Pell Grant eligibility and need. It is an amount of money that FAFSA has determined that your family can afford to contribute to your education even though your family may not contribute anything.

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Are loans considered financial aid?

Yes, loans are part of the federal aid program.

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What is the difference between a subsidized loan and an unsubsidized loan?

A subsidized loan does not accrue interest while you are in school. The federal government pays the interest while you are in school. You only begin accruing interest when you begin making payments six months after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half time.

The unsubsidized loan does accrue interest while you are in school. You have the option of paying the interest as it accrues.

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How do I apply for a federal student loan?

By completing your FAFSA, you will be offered student loans by the Financial Aid Office. Missouri Southern State University is a participant in the Direct Loan Program, and you are not required to complete additional paperwork. Through the Direct Loan Program, MSSU draws loan funds directly from the Department of Education. If you accept a loan and are a first time borrower at MSSU, you will be required to complete a Master Promissory Note (MPN) and Entrance Counseling at: www.studentloans.gov

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Who is eligible to receive federal student loans?

Any student enrolled in at least six hours (1/2 time), is not in default on a past student loan, and is making satisfactory academic progress..

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How much can I borrow?

Loan amounts are determined by your dependency status, your grade level, and amounts you may have borrowed in the past. Generally, these are the loan limits based on grade level:

 

Completed Hours Dependent Independent
0-29 $5500 $9500
30-59 $6500 $10,500
60-89 $7500 $12,500
90+ hrs $7,500 $12,500

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When do federal student loans have to repaid?

You begin payments on student loans six months after you graduate, withdraw, or drop below half-time.

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Do I have to be enrolled full-time to receive financial aid?

No. You may be enrolled in 6 hours or more to receive federal aid, including loans.

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What happens to my financial aid if I drop classes after I receive my financial aid?

Please consult with the MSSU Financial Aid Office at (417) 625-9325 or by email at finaid@mssu.edu for your specific information. Dropping classes may cause a reduction in your award, cancellation of future disbursements, and/or you may not be eligible to receive future financial aid.
You also may not meet Satisfactory Academic Progress. If you received loans and you drop below half-time, you will begin the grace period for repayment.

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What happens if I withdraw from all of my classes at MSSU?

Any pending disbursements will be cancelled. You will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension at MSSU. You will not be eligible to receive financial aid in future semesters. If you received loans and you drop below half-time, you will begin the grace period for repayment. You also may not meet Satisfactory Academic Progress. Please also review Withdrawal Information.

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What happens if I fail some or all of my classes?

Failing part of your classes may affect your Satisfactory Academic Progress and may cause you to lose your financial aid eligibility. Please contact the MSSU Financial Aid Office at (417) 625-9325 or finaid@mssu.edu for your specific information. If you fail all classes, you will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension and will not be eligible for financial aid at MSSU.

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