It’s how your school calculates your funding!
Clerical errors and missed deadlines leave many students without
This is a team effort between family and student!
Make sure you know your deadlines- each state is different!
(You can review here: https://fafsa.ed.gov/deadlines.htm)
Financial Aid Timeline
Jan – Feb 15
Get the FAFSA filed,
submit all admissions requests
March - April
financial aid award letters
verification if selected
Payment Plans, Student Loans
Jan next year
Back to the Future,
new FAFSA is due
Terms you should know….
• COA = Cost of Attendance
• EFC = Expected Family Contribution
• Financial Need = COA minus EFC
• Merit Based Funding = Scholarships
• Need Based Funding = Grants
Getting Started: What documents do I need?
Social Security number.
Driver’s license (if any)
2013 W-2 forms and other records of money earned
Student (and spouse if married) 2013 Federal Income Tax Return.
– IRS 1040, 1040A, 1040 EZ
– Foreign Tax Return, or
– Tax Return for Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands,
the Marshall Islands, the Federal States of Micronesia, or Palau
Parents’ 2013 Federal Income Tax Return (For dependent students)
2013 untaxed income records
Current bank statement information
Current business and investment mortgage information, business and farm
records, stock, bond and other investment records
Alien registration or permanent resident card (if you are not a U.S. citizen)
Make it easy: File Electronically!
Use IRS Data Retrieval Tool with E-Filed Taxes
Getting Started: File your FAFSA electronically!
• E-Sign your FAFSA with PIN
• Students and Parents need unique PINs
• Go to Gov site: https://pin.ed.gov
Selective Service: www.sss.gov
• Selective Services is an inactive draft in case of National Emergency
• All Males must register for financial aid eligibility
The FAFSA homepage
Go to: https://fafsa.ed.gov/
Getting started - File the correct year!
• 2014-2015 for upcoming Fall
• 2013-2014 is current year
• Double check your work!
Getting Started - Review the FAQs
• Need more help?
• FAQ’s available
online with application
• Accuracy counts- Issues
might slow you down
• Use unique emails for
students and parents
• Most common errors are:
• Get them right the first time!
Know your options!
• Search your
• List up to 10
schools to receive
School Selection: Housing
Housing affects Cost Of
• On Campus = Higher COA
• With parent = Lower COA
• Off campus = COA varies
• Two Student Types
• What’s the difference?
• Dependant students must
include parent tax and asset
information on the FAFSA.
• Independent students DO
NOT have to include parent
tax and asset information,
but WOULD include their
spouse of married.
Parent section : Be Accurate!
• The biggest problem is
• ACCURACY COUNTS!
Parent Section: Financial Information
• Parent income on FAFSA
• Income estimator: If
taxes are not ready,
estimating is okay. Go back
and correct the information
• “Dislocated worker”: If you
have this status, follow up with
your financial aid office to
determine eligibility for
increased financial aid via
Student Section: Tax Information
• Students don’t always file taxes
• Often simpler than parent section
Student Section: Reporting Assets
• Student assets are weighed heavily against financial aid
• Cash “As of today…”: Any extra cash spent yesterday on
school supplies is not claimed today as a FAFSA asset.
Confirmation and DRN
• Keep for your record
• Proof of timely FAFSA filing in case of error
• Follow up with school’s financial aid office
After FAFSA is complete….
• Compare financial aid offers
• Consider school choices
• Make informed decisions
• Finalize your commitment
• Get ready for College!
New Webinar “Making your college choice” available March 17 – June 15
Have questions? Ask Ken!
• Read Ken’s advice at: custudentloans.org/college-resource-center
• Email Ken at Ken@lendkey.com with questions
• Follow Ken for FAFSA tips on: