Office of Financial Aid
Frequently Asked Questions
The Office of Finanical Aid receives numerous questions each semester from students. The most-frequently asked have been answered below. Please contact us with further questions.
- Download Loan Instructions for Newly Admitted Students
- Download Loan Instructions for Continuing Students
Click a question below to show the answer.
- 1. How much will it cost for me to attend law school for a year?
Tuition, fees, and living expenses information is available through the JD admission web pages.
- 2. What do I need to do to change my requested loan amount?
To request a change to your existing loan amount, send an email to Financial Aid stating the exact dollar amount you wish to increase or decrease your loan.
- Last names beginning with the letters A through I, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Last names beginning with the letters J through Q, please email: email@example.com
- Last names beginning with the letters R through Z, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
You will be contacted by a financial aid counselor to confirm your request.
- 3. Can I defer my previous student loans?
If you are enrolled at least half time in a degree program at JMLS, you may be eligible to defer payment on previous student loans.
Many student loan companies will defer your loans automatically based on enrollment information they receive from the National Student Loan Clearinghouse. This type of update, however, usually does not happen until at least a month after the semester begins.
If you need your deferment to take place in a more timely manner, or your loan servicer does not update deferment status automatically, you should use a deferment form to update your enrollment status with your lender.
To update your enrollment status with a deferment form:
- Contact each company that holds one of your student loans to request that they send you a deferment form.(Alternatively, you may be able to download this form from the loan company's website. Deferment forms are NOT available from The John Marshall Law School.)
- Complete the borrower section of the form.
- Address and stamp an envelope to the loan servicer.
- Provide the form and the envelope to Natalie Wilson in the Record's Office, 3rd Floor.
- You may need to repeat this process EVERY SEMESTER.
The Records Office staff will complete and submit deferment forms on a regular basis—usually once a week.
- 4. How can I find out how much outstanding student loan debt I already have?
National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS):
You can find a full history of your federal student loans through the National Student Loan Database System (NSLDS).
Access to this system requires the same FSA ID and password used for FAFSA. You can create a new FSA ID here:https://fsaid.ed.gov/npas/index.htm.
- 5. What is loan consolidation?
Consolidation is a process through which you can combine several different federal educational loans together into one consolidation loan. Advantages of this program are:
- If you have loans held by several different lenders, you can pay them all in one place.
- You can reduce your monthly payment by extending your payments over a longer period of time.
- You can research and compare the availability of a low fixed interest rate.
- 6. Can I deduct educational expenses on my federal income tax?
Lifetime Learning Credit:
What is it?
According to the IRS website, the "Lifetime Learning Credit is for qualified tuition and related expenses paid for eligible students enrolled in an eligible educational institution. This credit can help pay for undergraduate, graduate and professional degree courses—including courses to acquire or improve job skills. There is no limit on the number of years you can claim the credit. It is worth up to $2,000 per tax return." You can access more information by visiting www.irs.gov/Individuals/LLC.
You may be eligible for this credit if you pay the tuition and related expenses of higher education for an eligible student whom you claim as an exemption on your tax return. You can claim this credit even if you pay these educational expenses with the proceeds of a loan. You must have tax liability (Form 1040, Line 42 or Form 1040A, Line 28 is greater than zero) to benefit from this credit. Eligibility for this credit is income-contingent and is phased out as your income becomes larger. The phase-out occurs between the following income levels: $41,000 to $51,000 for single filers; $82,000 to $102,000 for joint filers. You cannot claim this credit if you are married filing separately or if you are filing a 1040EZ.
How do I claim it?
To claim the Lifetime Learning Credit, you must complete IRS Form 8863 and submit it with your Form 1040 or 1040A.
Deduction of Qualified Higher Educational Expenses
What is it?
This deduction may benefit you if you cannot claim the Lifetime Learning Credit. This is an adjustment to income, not a Schedule A deduction. More information can be found on the IRS website at www.irs.gov/Individuals/Qualified-Ed-Expenses.
You may be eligible for this deduction if you pay the tuition and related expenses of higher education for an eligible student whom you claim as an exemption on your tax return.You can claim this deduction even if you pay these educational expenses with the proceeds of a loan.Eligibility for this deduction has an income ceiling of $65,000 for single filers or $130,000 for joint filers.You cannot claim this deduction if you are claiming the Lifetime Learning Credit.
How do I claim it?
Complete the tuition and fees deduction worksheet included with your 1040 or 1040A.
Student Loan Interest Deduction
What is it?
The information provided by the IRS states, "Generally, personal interest you pay, other than certain mortgage interest, is not deductible on your tax return. However, if your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) is less than $80,000 ($160,000 if filing a joint return) there is a special deduction allowed for paying interest on a student loan (also known as an education loan) used for higher education. For most taxpayers, MAGI is the adjusted gross income as figured on their federal income tax return before subtracting any deduction for student loan interest. This deduction can reduce the amount of your income subject to tax by up to $2,500 in 2014." For more information please visit the IRS website at www.irs.gov/publications/p970/ch04.html.
You may be eligible for this deduction if you paid any interest on an eligible educational loan during the year.Eligibility for this deduction is income-contingent and is phased out as your income becomes larger.The phase-out occurs between the following income levels: $50,000 to $65,000 for single filers; $100,000 to $130,000 for joint filers.You cannot claim this deduction if you are married filing separately or if you are filing a Form 1040EZ.
How do I claim it?
Figure the deduction using the "Student Loan Interest Deduction Worksheet" in the Form 1040 or Form 1040A instructions.
There are many other provisions to the Taxpayer Relief Act.Please consult with your tax advisor to be sure you are eligible for any of these taxpayer benefits.
- 7. Can I increase my cost of attendance budget?
Yes, cost of attendance budgets for tuition charges are automatically adjusted as it gets closer to the start of every semester, based on registration changes. Cost of attendance budgets are increased for living expenses, but only for four specific reasons. Students can increase their cost of attendance budgets while studying at John Marshall only once for the cost of the bar exam and the cost of a laptop or computer purchased. Cost of attendance budgets can be increased for child care paid and for medical/dental expenses paid, which go over what is already built into the living expense budget for medical/dental expenses.
Budget Increase Request forms are available after the start of each semester and need to be completed and returned a month before the end of each semester. Specific deadline dates are given on each form. Budget Increase Forms are available at www.jmls.edu/students/financial-aid/current-students.php