I have Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) status. How should I complete the FAFSA?

Question:

I have Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) status. How should I complete the FAFSA?

Answer:

Under certain circumstances, undocumented individuals who entered the U.S. before reaching age 16 and before June 15, 2007 may apply for a temporary 3-year exemption from deportation under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. People granted DACA status may also receive a work permit.

Undocumented students with DACA status are not eligible for federal student aid. They may, however, be eligible for state or institutional financial aid, depending on the state and the college.

Ask the college financial aid administrator how to apply for funding available to DACA students.

Some colleges will tell students with DACA status to file the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), even though the students are ineligible for federal student aid, because the FAFSA is also used to apply for state and institutional aid. These students should select the “No, I am not a citizen or eligible noncitizen” answer to the question about citizenship status.

California students with DACA status, however, should not file the FAFSA. Instead, they should complete the California Dream Act Application at www.caldreamact.org.