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Divorce? Marry Off Your Kid? As Financial Aid Confusion Grows, Parents Consider Drastic Measures

If there’s one thing more frustrating than trying to get into the right college, it might be paying for the degree. That’s what thousands of parents discover daily while discussing how to foot the bill.

In online communities like Facebook and Reddit, some parents share standard suggestions like saving more money or choosing a less-expensive state school.

Others are proposing more drastic measures.

For example, if a student gets married, they’re legally considered independent from their parents and may be eligible for more aid. So why not marry the kids off?

College has never been more expensive, and students are graduating with more debt than ever. This leads some to extreme measures to reduce costs, as was the case in Illinois. An investigation by ProPublica Illinois and the Wall Street Journal in July found some families were giving up legal custody of their children, thereby making them eligible for financial aid that would be normally reserved for needy families. The University of Illinois referred the cases to the U.S. Department of Education and rescinded the scholarship money it had provided to the students.