Appeal applications must be accompanied by supporting documentation.
Each student has the right to appeal their financial aid decision. Appeals should only be based on new or changing information which was not included in the original financial aid application.
Federal regulations give Suffolk's financial aid office the ability to adjust a student's FAFSA using professional judgment at the request of a student based on their special or unusual circumstances. This can allow our financial aid counselors to review documents and make updates to the FAFSA accordingly in order to increase a student's eligibility for federal and state aid. These determinations are made on a case-by-case basis.
The Department of Education defines the following:
- Cost of attendance (COA) increase requests refer to additional costs incurred by the student based on their enrollment that are not included in the basic COA stipulated for each academic year. These can include expenses for dependent childcare, purchase of a computer, and other extraordinary education related expenses.
- Special Circumstances refer to financial situations (loss of a job, etc.) that justify an aid administrator adjusting data elements in the cost of attendance COA or in the EFC calculation.
- Unusual Circumstances refer to the conditions that justify an aid administrator making an adjustment to a student's dependency status based on a unique situation (e.g., human trafficking, refugee or asylee status, parental abandonment, incarceration), more commonly referred to as a dependency override.
To initiate a request for unusual circumstances or cost of attendance increases, please contact your financial aid counselor.
Counselors will review the student's financial situation and documents but changes to FAFSA and additional aid are not guaranteed. Any additional funding received through the appeal process may not be renewable every year.
Please note: Suffolk University does not match aid offers from other institutions.