Reasons Not to Complete a Federal Income Tax Return1. Not required to file. Sometimes, a person does not have to file a federal income tax return because a taxpayer’s gross income is less than the filing thresholds.
2. Filing extension. Some taxpayers file an extension for their income tax returns, granting them six months to complete the records.
4. Unauthorized failure to file. There are a variety of reasons an individual would fall into this category. Sometimes, this happens because a taxpayer is unorganized and simply fails to meet the deadline. Other times, it occurs because the individual owes a big tax bill or is a tax protestor or evader. Finally, it may happen because someone is hospitalized, incarcerated or institutionalized. None of these reasons are adequate for not filing taxes with the IRS.
How to File the FAFSA Without a Tax Return
What to Do If There is No Help From ParentsThere are undoubtedly students who will find no help from parents – whether that’s paying for college or even providing financial information for the FAFSA. Unfortunately, parents’ financial information is required on the FAFSA if the student is considered a dependent. Students can petition to be considered an independent student and will qualify if they meet any of the following requirements: • Be 24 years of age or older by December 31 of the award year
• Be an orphan (both parents deceased), ward of the court, in foster care or was a ward of the court when 13 years or older
• Be a veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States or serving on active duty for other than training purposes
• Be a graduate or professional student
• Be a married individual
• Have legal dependents other than a spouse
• Be an emancipated minor or in legal guardianship
• Be a homeless youth
• Be a student for whom a financial aid administrator makes a documented determination of independence by reason of other unusual circumstances If the student does not qualify for independent status, he or she can talk to a financial aid administrator. They may be able to talk parents into filing the FAFSA or working with an accountant to file federal income tax returns. When they hear from a professional that providing their financial information in no way obligates them to pay for college, they may be a little easier to persuade. Additionally, if a student has a history of abuse or a hostile home environment, they can petition their college for a dependency override. This means that a financial aid administrator has the ability to change the student’s status from dependent to independent, and the FAFSA can be completed without the parents’ information. Finally, if parents still refuse to fill out the FAFSA or submit federal income tax returns, a financial aid administrator can make a student eligible for unsubsidized Stafford loans. Essentially, there are options for students who have parents that won’t contribute financially or provide financial information, like federal income tax returns. It will require a lot of work and many, many phone calls; however, the prospect of having student aid to help pay for school should be more than enough to motivate students to pursue that path. The bottom line is…students should ask for help instead of losing out on a college education because of their parents. Exceptions can be made, and a financial aid administrator’s main mission is to help students pay for school. So students should let them.