The Division of Financial Aid (DFA) strives to protect the confidentiality and privacy of student records as required by law. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (as amended), commonly referred to as the Buckley Amendment, sets forth the educational information of a student and how that information should be treated to protect student privacy.
More information regarding student information and privacy at Purdue University is available from the Office of the Registrar via the following documents:
- University Policy Regarding the "Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974" (as amended), Executive Memorandum C-51
- Student Educational Records -- Notification of Rights Under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, University Regulations 2002-03, Part 6, Section I
- FERPA Learning Tool
Advice to Students, Parents, and External Parties Seeking Student Financial Aid Records
The Division of Financial Aid recommends custodial parents, non-custodial parents, and interested third parties (lawyers, scholarship organizations, etc.) seek financial aid award information directly from the student. Students have quick and easy access to their financial aid, billing, and grade report records viamyPurdue.
While a student may submit a written request to have specific information released to specific parties, this can be a cumbersome, time-consuming process for the student. A quick logon to myPurdue may meet your student financial aid information needs.
DFA counselors may provide custodial parents with financial aid information services, but are not required to do so. In some instances, DFA reserves the right to refer some custodial parent questions back to the student to receive information to protect the confidentiality of student records.
DFA Student Financial Aid Information Release Practices
Note that for financial aid purposes, parent definitions and independent student definitions are defined by federal student aid regulations and may differ from Internal Revenue Service dependent exemption tax rules and definitions. Any exceptions to these DFA information release practices are subject to Director approval.
Parent Financial Aid Record Release
Financial aid records and statements of a student’s parents submitted to DFA are not considered student educational records and thus will not be released to the student. For example, DFA will not release a copy of a parent tax return to a student.
Non-Custodial Parent Information Inquiries
DFA staff will not release student financial aid information to the non-custodial parent(s) of a student considered dependent for financial aid purposes.
Parents of Independent Students Information Inquiries
DFA staff will not release student financial aid information to the parent(s) or spouse of a student considered independent for financial aid purposes.
Student Written Requests
A student may submit a written and signed request for the release of student financial aid information from DFA that specifies the following: (1) exactly what information is to be released; (2) the time period the information is for; and (3) the reason the information is being sought. This information will only be provided to the student.
No student-specific financial aid information is provided to any third party by phone or in person.
DFA Identity Confirmation Practices
Student Identity Confirmation in Person
The preferred method for confirming student identity is the student’s personal presentation of a valid Purdue University Identification card, driver’s license, or passport (picture ID).
Student Identity Confirmation on the Telephone
Over the phone, student identity will be verified by asking a series of questions: full name, date of birth, and student identification number. To preserve the privacy of student records, DFA reserves the right to deny telephone service to a caller if the identity of the caller cannot be confirmed or is in doubt.
- Student Identify Confirmation through Email
Students seeking information specific to their account through email must inquire through their purdue.edu email account and include their name, Purdue University ID number, and date of birth.
Dependent Student Custodial Parent Confirmation in Person
Parents of dependent students seeking information specific to their child’s account through email must inquire through the parent email account that they provided on the student’s Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and include their name and date of birth and the student’s name and Purdue University ID number and date of birth.
Dependent Student Custodial Parent Confirmation on the Telephone
Custodial parent identity will be verified by asking a series of questions: full name of student and parent, student identification number, and parent date of birth as reported on the FAFSA. To preserve the privacy of student records, DFA reserves the right to deny telephone service to a caller if the identity of the caller cannot be confirmed or is in doubt.
- Dependent Student Custodial Parent Confirmation through Email
Custodial parent identity will be verified by asking a series of questions including but not limited to: full name of student and parent, student identification number, and parent date of birth as reported on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Independent Student Parents on the Telephone or in Person
No student-specific financial aid information will be released to the spouse or parents of students considered independent for financial aid purposes, including parents that are required to provide information on the FAFSA for Health Professions Loan Program purposes. Students that want to share their financial aid status and eligibility information with unauthorized individuals are encouraged to call or come in with that individual, or forward copies of financial aid information available on their myPurdue account DFA does not provide a blanket release form authorizing the release of information to unauthorized individuals. Students can request single release authorize DFA in order to complete applications for private scholarship or government benefits. The Office of the Bursar allows a student to authorize a user to view bills and make payments. More information about authorized user access is available at http://www.purdue.edu/bursar/payments/myPurdue_instructions.html.
Restricting Information Access
The Purdue University Division of Financial Aid uses the information students provide on the Free Application of Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine eligibility to receive federal, state, and institutional student financial aid and the amount of eligibility. Sections 483 and 484 of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, gives the Federal Student Aid Programs (FSAP) and DFA the authority to ask students and parents these questions, and to collect the SSN of students and parents. DFA, FSAP, and your state aid agency uses the SSN to verify, identify, and retrieve records, and may request the SSN again for these purposes.
Without student consent, FSAP may disclose information provided on the FAFSA to entities under a published “routine use.” Under such a routine use, FSAP may disclose information to third parties that are authorized to assist them in administering the above programs; to other federal agencies under computer matching programs, such as those with the Internal Revenue Service, Social Security Administration, Selective Service System, Immigration and Naturalization Service, and Veterans Administration; to a student’s parents or spouse; and to members of Congress if a student asks them to help with student aid questions.
If the federal government, the U.S. Department of Education, or an employee of the U.S. Department of Education is involved in litigation, FSAP may send information to the Department of Justice, or a court of adjudicative body, if the disclosure is related to financial aid and certain conditions are met. In addition, FSAP may send student information to a foreign, federal, state, or local enforcement agency if the information submitted indicates a violation, or potential violation of law, for which that agency has jurisdiction for investigation or prosecution. Finally, FSAP may send information regarding a claim that is determined to be valid and overdue to a consumer report agency. This information includes identifiers from the record; the amount, status, and history of the claim, and the program under which the claim arose.