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Applying for Aid – New Students

The Financial Aid Deadline is March 16th.

We hope that applying for financial aid is a painless process. It is important to start early, and to compile all the required information and documentation.

To begin you will need:

  • Parent 2014 complete tax return (provide both sets if parents are separated)
  • Student 2014 complete tax return
  • A list of student and parent assets

Federal Loans

U.S. citizens and permanent residents are eligible for $20,500 with the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan each year. Additionally, you may be eligible to receive the Federal Direct Graduate Plus Loan to cover the remaining cost. To apply for a federal loan, please:   

After you have completed the FAFSA, you should receive a Student Aid Report (SAR). If there is an error message, you must address it by making the necessary changes to your report as soon as possible. If errors are not resolved, this may result in a delay of processing your financial aid. Once you have made a change, please send an email to the Financial Aid Office so that we can access the corrected report and offer you the appropriate federal loans. 

Once your eligibility for federal loans is determined, and you decide you would like to receive these loans while a student at Cornell Law School, please do the following :

  • Please visit www.studentloans.gov and sign the online promissory note or notes necessary.
  • The Unsubsidized loan has its own promissory note; the Graduate PLUS Loan does as well

  • Please visit www.studentloans.gov and complete the online Entrance Counseling
  • (To fulfill this requirement you have two options: there is a combination entrance counseling option which covers the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan and the Graduate Plus Loan or you can complete one entrance counseling session for the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan and one for the Graduate Plus loan).
  • Complete and return the Federal Verification Worksheet located on our website in the forms section.

If you wish to be considered for institutional scholarships please submit the following:  

  • Complete the Cornell Law School Financial Aid Information Sheet
  • File a FAFSA using school code 002711
  • File a Need Access Report
  • Submit a copy of parent 2014 federal tax return
  • Submit a copy of student 2014 federal tax return

Make sure that you:  

  • Provide parent information. Applications missing parent information will not be reviewed for grants unless you have requested and have received a waiver from the Financial Aid Office.
  • Provide information for both parents in cases of divorce or separation.
  • Submit business returns if relevant.
  • Submit complete federal tax returns with all schedules and W-2 forms.
  • Apply no later than March 16th, unless your admission decision is pending by that date (if pending, please follow up with required material as soon as possible). Applications received after this date may be placed on hold.
  • Contact the Financial Aid Office if there is a problem or if you have any questions.

For financial aid purposes, an applicant is considered independent if he/she has not been claimed on his/her parents' taxes for the past six CONSECUTIVE calendar years (2009-2014). If you think you are an independent student for grant purposes, please contact the Financial Aid Office well before completing the Need Access Report 

After your financial aid file is complete, your file will be reviewed by our financial aid committee. You will receive communication via regular mail or email, which will contain information about your financial aid.  

Note: If you are being offered the Federal Graduate Plus Loan in your notification, and wish to receive this loan, the required paper application is located on our website in the "Forms" section. If you wish to receive this loan, please print the application and submit it via e-mail, mail or fax to the Law School's Financial Aid Office. The Department of Education will conduct a credit check for this loan and will notify you if further documentation or action is required.

For more information, contact:

Financial Aid Office
226A Myron Taylor Hall
Cornell Law School
Ithaca, NY 14853
(607) 255-5141
law.financialaid@cornell.edu