Unaccompanied Homeless Youth Determination: A Template for Financial Aid Administrators

This template has been created to assist financial aid administrators in making unaccompanied homeless youth determinations and can be edited as appropriate for your institution.

Per changes from the FAFSA Simplification Act, financial aid administrators (FAA) have the responsibility to make determinations of unaccompanied homeless youth if youth are unable to get determinations from other entities. Remember, if a student provides a determination from one of the authorized entities, financial aid administrators MUST accept the determination unless there is “specific documented conflicting information.” Financial aid administrators do not need to ask more questions or ask for additional documentation. However, if the student is unable to obtain documentation, FAAs are required to make a determination based on a documented interview or a written statement from the student. The determination must be made based on the legal definitions of homeless and unaccompanied, and independently from the reasons that the student is an unaccompanied homeless youth, or is a youth who is unaccompanied, at risk of homelessness, and self-supporting.

To help financial aid administrators make these determinations, we’ve created this financial aid template. This template may be edited as appropriate for your institution.

Download the new 2023-2024 Financial Aid Template Form

Download the new 2024-2025 Financial Aid Template Form

Per federal guidance from the U.S. Department of Education, “if a student indicates that they are an unaccompanied homeless youth—or unaccompanied and self-supporting youth at-risk of homelessness—and the student is unable to provide documentation from at least one of the entities listed above, FAAs must review the student’s circumstances and make the determination themselves.” 

For more assistance, view this video role-playing what a financial aid administrator documented interview can look like.