What if I can't afford my EFC (Expected Family Contribution)?

The Expected Family Contribution measures your family's financial strength, and is used to determine your eligibility for federal student aid during one school year. You receive an EFC based on the processing results of your FAFSA. 

The EFC is the amount you, or your family, is expected to pay toward your education costs.

It is possible that some students and their families won't be able to pay the EFC that has been assigned to them. This is not unusual and help may be available.

The first thing you should do is contact the financial aid department at the college or university you plan to attend. Be sure to ask about Federal Work-Study which is a program that may allow you to work on or off campus while going to school.

Also, be sure to review all sources of free aid such as scholarships and grants.

For more information:

  • Contact the financial aid administrator at your school.
  • Or call the Federal Student Aid Department 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243).
  • If you are hearing impaired call the TTY line at 1-800-730-8913
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