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California State University, Long Beach

General Eligibility Requirements for the Federal Financial Aid Programs

To be eligible for federal financial aid you must:

If you do not meet the above criteria for federal financial aid, there are alternative loan programs and scholarships for which they may qualify.

Citizenship Requirements

To be eligible for federal financial aid you must be one of the following:

  • a U. S. citizen.
  • a U.S. national (includes natives of American Samoa or Swain's Island).
  • a U.S. permanent resident who has an I-151, I-551 or I-551C Alien Registration Receipt Card.


You must have an Arrival-Departure Record (I-94) from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) showing one of the following designations:

  • "Refugee"
  • "Asylum Granted"
  • "Indefinite Parole" and/or "Humanitarian Parole"
  • "Cuban-Haitian Entrant, Status Pending"
  • "Conditional Entrant" (valid only if issued before April 1, 1980)

You are NOT eligible for federal financial aid if you:

  • have an Employment Authorization Card/Document (Form I-688A, I-688B, or I-766) or a Temporary Resident Card (Form I-688).
  • Have an Approval Form I-797, "Application for Voluntary Departure Under the Family Unity Program."
  • have only a Notice of Approval to Apply for Permanent Residence (I-171 or I-464).
  • are in the U. S. on an F1 or F2 student visa only.
  • are in the U.S. on a J1 or J2 exchange visitor visa only.
  • have a G series visa (pertaining to international organizations).

Social Security Number Requirement

You must have a valid Social Security Number to apply for and receive federal financial aid.

Please note: A student who is a resident of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia or the Republic of Palau is not required to provide a Social Security Number when completing the FAFSA; he/she will receive a special identifying number in lieu of a Social Security Number. In order to apply for Federal Student Aid (Pell Grant, SEOG, or Work Study), a student from one of these regions will need to complete a paper version of the FAFSA and send it to the following address:

Federal Student Aid Programs
P.O. Box 7001
Mt. Vernon, IL 62864-0071

Drug Convictions and Financial Aid Eligibility

Under the Higher Education Act, you may become ineligible for federal student aid upon conviction of any offense involving the possession or sale of illegal drugs while receiving Title IV federal financial aid. Federal aid includes Federal Direct Loans, Federal Direct PLUS Loans, Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loans, Federal Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, Federal ACG Grants, Federal SMART Grants, Federal TEACH Grants, Federal Work Study, and Perkins Loans.

Penalties for Drug Convictions

Penalties for Drug Convictions Possession of Illegal Drugs:

  • First Offense: Ineligible to receive aid for 1 year from the date of conviction
  • Second Offense: Ineligible to receive aid for 2 years from the date of conviction
  • Third and Subsequent Offenses: Indefinite ineligibility from the date of conviction

Sale of Illegal Drugs:

  • First Offense: Ineligible to receive aid for 2 years from the date of conviction
  • Second and Subsequent Offenses: Indefinite ineligibility from the date of conviction

How to Regain Eligibility

You can regain eligibility for federal student aid funds by successfully completing a drug rehabilitation program. To be sufficient to reinstate financial aid eligibility, the program must:

  • include at least 2 unannounced drug tests
  • be recognized as a Federal, State, or local government agency program

You will regain eligibility on the date of successfully completing the program.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Question 23 on the FAFSA form asks if you have ever been convicted of a drug related offense. Failure to answer this question will automatically disqualify you from receiving Federal aid. Falsely answering this question, if discovered, could result in fines up to $20,000, imprisonment, or both.

Convictions During Enrollment

According to the United States Department of Education, if you are convicted of a drug offense after receiving Federal aid, you must notify the Financial Aid Department immediately and you will be ineligible for further aid and required to pay back all aid received after the conviction.

Drug and Alcohol Policy at CSULB

CSULB’s policies on alcohol, drugs and tobacco can be found on the CSULB Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs (ATOD) website under Campus ATOD Policies.