If parents had assessable assets, such as CDs, they could gift the CDs to the students siblings. The financial aid result would be moving an assessable asset, CDs, to a non-assessable asset in the siblings name. Be sure the college is not an elite school that uses the CSS PROFILE that requests the assessment of siblings assets.
The parents reduced their assets by $5,000 by shifting assets to non-college members of the family. Since the parents assets were assessed at 5.6% the asset reduction may increase the childs financial aid eligibility by $280 ($5,000 x 5.6%).
If you are in a financial aid asset assessment rate of 5.6%, you could increase your financial aid eligibility up to $56 for every $1,000 of asset reduction by shifting assets to non-college members of the family.