Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
Go online at FAFSA.gov and apply starting October 1, 2018 - March 2, 2019 to be eligible for scholarships, loans, grants, etc. for school year 2019-2020.
v https://fafsa.gov/ – Make sure you apply at .gov (not .com)
This is a FREE application; beware of scams that will try to charge you for this service. The FAFSA must be completed each year the student is in college.
v FSA ID’s - The Student & the parent must apply for their FSA ID’s (separately and with their unique email addresses). This is required to electronically submit the FAFSA. Make sure this is an email address that is checked routinely.
v Make sure to apply with the student’s legal name that matches their social security card. This should be the same name listed on their college applications.
v Use your 2017 IRS tax return information to submit your application for the 2019-2020 school year starting October 1. The IRS Retrieval Tool (DRT) is available to electronically fill in the 2017 data. The data will appear "encrypted" in order to maintain privacy.
v School Selection – Add the schools to which you are applying. There are ten (10) slots available to list schools. If you are applying to any California schools, make sure to list them in the #1 slot so that you will be considered for Cal Grants. If you have more than 10 schools, you will need to complete & submit the FAFSA application. Wait 24 hours, then log-in again & remove the schools on the list, add the additional school names, and re-submit the FAFSA application. If you make any updates/changes to your application, you will have to repeat this process for all of the colleges on your list. Colleges will not see other schools listed on a student’s FAFSA.
v The FAFSA can be electronically submitted /signed using the student and parent FSA ID.
v Upon submission, you will receive a Confirmation Page with your Confirmation Number and Data Release Number (DRN). Make sure you print a copy of this page for your reference!!
v Student Aid Report (SAR) – A Student Aid Report will be sent electronically to your student/parent and will summarize the FAFSA information, specifically the “Expected Family Contribution” (EFC). The SAR will be sent electronically within 3-5 days after electronically submitting the FAFSA (2-weeks, if FAFSA is submitted by paper). The SAR will be sent by U.S Postal within 3-weeks if the FAFSA (online or paper) was submitted without a valid email address.
v Expected Family Contribution (EFC) –Schools use the EFC to determine your federal student aid eligibility and financial aid award.
v FAFSA on the Web (FOTW) – Use FOTW (https://fafsa.ed.gov/help.htm) to get help. Students can also get assistance at: