Will my son’s summer income count for financial aid?

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Q. My son will be a senior in high school next year and eventually go to college. He plans to work a summer job. We want to make sure the money he makes doesn’t count against him for financial aid. Is there a way to protect it?
— Mom

A. There’s a lot to consider when it comes to what assets are considered for financial aid purposes.

Most importantly, it’s something of a moving target.

For starters, generally speaking, student assets will have an effect on their financial aid eligibility, said Victoria Cannillo, a financial analyst with Baron Financial Group in Fair Lawn.

However, she said, there exists a student “income protection allowance” for dependent students.

“For the 2023-2024 FAFSA, that number was $7,600,” she said. “It changes every year.”

That’s to be considered for federal financial aid.

If your son wants to stay below that limit, he will need to do some figuring in terms of what he will be paid for the summer job.

It’s also important to note that different colleges have varying financial aid programs with aid through the school itself.

Cannillo said if your son knows what schools he is considering, you can reach out to the respective financial aid departments to answer any questions you may have.

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This story was originally published in June 2024.

NJMoneyHelp.com presents certain general financial planning principles and advice, but should never be viewed as a substitute for obtaining advice from a personal professional advisor who understands your unique individual circumstances.