Most families know this time of year is when the FAFSA must be filed. One of the most important questions the FAFSA answers is, “How much Pell Grant will I get?” The answer is like all questions related to financial aid–it depends. If you meet the eligibility requirements to receive federal student aid and have filed your FAFSA, the Expected Family Contribution calculated as a result of processing your FAFSA, along with your school’s Cost of Attendance and your enrollment status will be used to determine how much, if any, Pell Grant you may receive. The maximum eligible EFC for 2014-2015 is 5157. You will find your EFC when you receive your Student Aid Report issued after filing your FAFSA. If you supplied a valid email address and signed your FAFSA with your PIN, you will be able to get this report 3-5 days after submitting the FAFSA. Don’t worry if it seems complicated. Your financial aid office will notify you of the specific amount you may receive when they send you your financial aid award letter. That said, let’s take a look at this year’s maximum and minimum award amounts.
For the 2014-2015 award year (July 1, 2014 – June 30, 2015), the maximum Pell Grant available is $5,730. Conversely, the minimum is $573. This year’s Pell Grant is an increase of $85 from the $5,645 maximum in 2013-2014. The maximum and minimum Pell Grant amounts are set by law. Every student who meets the eligibility requirements and has sufficient need will receive funding. The higher your EFC, the lower the award you can receive. And, if you don’t qualify for a Pell Grant, there are many other types of financial aid available to help you pay for your college education–even if you don’t have any financial need.
Here are the 2014-2015 Award Year Federal Pell Grant Program Payment and Disbursement Schedules in PDF format. Remember, your financial aid office has the final word on your eligibility to receive financial aid–including the Pell Grant.
In case you are curious, here are the historical Pell Grant maximums adjusted for inflation (2013):