Ask Terry Questions Will my daughter — immigrant, no green card — be eligible for Federal student loans?

Will my daughter — immigrant, no green card — be eligible for Federal student loans?

By Terry Savage on March 29, 2018 | College Savings / Student Loans

Hello Terry, I am here in USA on a work visa (H1) and am waiting for my (and for my daughter's) green-card to arrive, which will take several more years. I have a sodaughtern (who is my dependent and hence on H4 visa) who is a Cupertino Middle School,California. I have stayed in California state for about 8 years now and have paid Federal and State taxes for all those years. Recently, I got a chance to talk to a college counselor and he said that my daughter would not be eligible for any financial loans (because she does not have a green-card or citizenship). And I was also told that she will be considered an international student, and hence he will have to pay higher fees. I would greatly appreciate if you could guide me on how to best handle this situation. Is there anyway my daughter would qualify for FAFSA loans? Is there a way my daughter can qualify for In-State tuition fees? Please let me know California rules for H4 students.

Terry Says

Sorry to say that this is a Federal, not a state issue.  And Federal student loans such as Stafford and PLUS loans for parents are not given to foreign nationals.   However, schools may have other funds to offer deserving students -- either through outright grants or work/study program.  And she can definitely search for a Scholarship -- free money -- at or   Plenty of foreign students have earned college degrees in America, using these sources of money.  And, if your daughter were an "independent" person instead of your dependent, she might well qualify for in-state tuition.  Check with the college counselor as to the requirements, which she might establish in the future (helping with sophomore, junior and senior tuition costs).  Likely she will have to prove she has a job and that you contribute less than 50 percent of her support.



a personal
finance question