Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: How do I apply for financial aid?

You will need to complete a FAFSA application online. FAFSA applications are available every January 1st.

Q: Can I complete a paper FAFSA?

Yes. You will need to request a paper application directly from the Department of Education. You can reach them at 1-800-433-3243. Paper applications are no longer available at colleges or universities due to new policies at the Department of Education.

Q: Do I need to complete a FAFSA application every semester?

No. When you apply for the FAFSA, the application is valid for one academic year. For example, if you completed the 2012-2013 FAFSA, your application is valid for the Fall 2012, Spring 2013, and Summer 2013 semesters.

Q: What makes a student independent?

The Department of Education uses the following guidelines to determine if a student is dependent or independent:

2012-2013 FAFSA:

  • Were you born before January 1, 1989?
  • At the beginning of the 2012-2013 school year, will you be working on a master's or doctorate program (such as an MA, MBA, MD, JD, PhD, EdD, or graduate certificate, etc.)?
  • As of the day you sign your FAFSA, are you married? (answer yes if you are separated but not divorced)
  • Do you have children who receive more than half of their support from you?
  • Do you have dependents (other than your children or spouse) who live with you and who receive more than half of their support from you, now and through June 30, 2013?
  • Are (a) both of your parents deceased, or (b) are you (or were you until age 18) a ward/dependent of the court?
  • Are you currently serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces for purposes other than training?
  • Are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces?
  • Has it been determined by a court in your state of legal residence that you are an emanicpated minor or that you are in a legal guardianship?
  • At any time on or after July 1, 2011, were you determined to be an unaccompanied youth who was homeless, as determined by (a) your high school or district homeless liaison or (b) the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development?
  • At any time on or after July 1, 2011, did the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program determine that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or were self-supporting and at risk of being homeless?**

If you answer yes to any of these questions, you are considered an independent student.

*Please note that you cannot be considered an independent student simply because you live on your own, or your parents no longer list you as a dependent on their tax return, or feel it's not their responsibility to help you pay for college.

Q: How do I check on the status of my financial aid?

For steps on using your MyUH Portal to check on your financial aid award information and status, follow this link: Financial Aid Award Information

Q: What do I do after I accept my loans?

You must complete the loan process by completing an entrance interview and promissory note. You can find instructions at this link: Completing the Loan Process

Q: How do I get the money?

Your financial aid will be disbursed electronically to our office from your lender. Your financial aid will then be applied to any charges you have on your UH account such as tuition, fees, and housing. Any amounts in excess of your charges will be refunded back to you by the Cashier's Office to the address on file via paper check or to your bank account if you signed up for E-Refunds. If you would like your money a little quicker, or if you want to avoid physical address delays (for mainland addresses especially), we recommend that you sign up for E-Refunds through your MyUH Portal.

Q: Why hasn't my aid been applied to my account?

  • You are not 12 credits as an Undergraduate, Law, or Med student OR you are not 8 credits as a Graduate student at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Since we award based on full-time status, you will either need to increase your credits to full-time or complete the following form to have your funds disbursed: Enrollment Form *
  • You did not complete the loan process by doing an entrance interview and promissory note. Please follow these instructions:

Q: Where is my refund?

  • Refunds are generally processed by the Cashier's Office within a week after your account is in a credit balance status (check your MyUH Portal)
  • If you recently received outside scholarships or third party payments, your aid may need to be revised due to an overaward and your refund may be held. See Overawarding
  • You have recently dropped credits below the full-time credit loan. Your refund may be held until you complete an Enrollment Form * or bring your credit load over the full-time load.

Q: Where is my 1098T form for my taxes?

  • The 1098T form should be mailed out by the end of January by the Cashier's Office.
  • You may get information and download a copy of your 1098T at www.fmo.hawaii.edu/bursar/1098t.html .

Return to top

*Note: PDF () files require Adobe Reader