Common FAFSA issues

 

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

This is the official application students must use to apply for federal aid. The Student Aid Report (SAR) is generated from the information the student/parents supply on the FAFSA form. The financial aid office then awards a financial aid package based on the Student Aid Report.

Here are some common issues that you may encounter when filling out the FAFSA. For additional information, visit their website.

Status Report information on FAFSA
Married or remarried in any state (either gender) Report marital status as married and both parents information provided on the FAFSA
Parent remarried (either gender) Report marital status as married and parent and stepparent information reported on FAFSA
Parents (biological or adoptive) separated, but not legally separated, living together Report marital status as married on FAFSA and provide information on both parents on FAFSA
Parent never married and living with biological or adoptive parent (either gender) Report marital status as unmarried living together, provide information on both parents on FAFSA
Parent never married, living with someone who is NOT the biological or adoptive parent of student Report marital status as never married and the other person’s information IS NOT reported on the FAFSA
Parent in domestic partnership or civil union with someone who is not the adoptive parent of the student Parent reports as never married, divorced or separated or widowed and the other person’s information IS NOT reported on the FAFSA, as domestic partnerships and civil union not recognized.
Student lives with legal guardians Student answers in or were in legal guardianship and only student information required on the FAFSA
Student lives with grandparents or other relatives and not with either biological or adoptive parent If, student is under 24, and cannot answer yes to any other question to be independent, student provides only student information on the FAFSA and must appeal for a dependency override.

 

  • Do I need to provide my Social Security Number on the FAFSA?

    You must enter your Social Security Number (SSN) to be considered for Federal Student Aid.

    Enter the SSN that is printed on your Social Security card. Enter this number without dashes. For example, enter 123456789.

    Your SSN is automatically filled in on your FAFSA based on the SSN you enter on the “Login” page. If you incorrectly enter your SSN on the “Login” page, you cannot change it and you will have to start a new FAFSA.


    Special instructions for citizens of the Freely Associated States:

    If you do not have an SSN and are a citizen of the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, or Palau, otherwise known as the Freely Associated States, enter 666 in the first three positions of the SSN field and leave the remaining six positions blank. When your application is processed, the last six digits of the SSN will be assigned to you.

    If their system has assigned you a nine-digit identifier beginning with 888, enter that identifier, but replace the 888 with 666.

     

  • Make FAFSA Corrections

    If you need to make a correction to your FAFSA, click Make FAFSA Corrections. You must enter your PIN to correct your FAFSA.

    Once your correction is submitted and you receive a confirmation number, the correction will be processed in 3-5 days.

     

  • Who needs to sign when I correct my FAFSA?

    Your signature is always required. When making corrections to your FAFSA online, you must sign electronically with your Federal Student Aid PIN.

    If you are a dependent student and you do not correct any of your parents’ information, then a parent is not required to sign your corrected FAFSA.

    If you are a dependent student and you do correct your parents’ information, then a parent is required to sign your corrected FAFSA.

    If your parent’s signature is required and he or she did not already sign your corrected FAFSA, you can do the following:

    Click Login on the home page to log in to FAFSA on the Web.
    Click Provide Signatures.

    Your parent should follow the instructions provided on the page to sign your corrected FAFSA with a PIN. If your parent chooses to sign with a PIN and does not already have a PIN, he or she can apply for a PIN at www.pin.ed.gov.

    If your parent chooses not to apply for a PIN, he or she can print a signature page, sign it, and mail it to the address provided.

     

  • Can I correct any field on the FAFSA?

    With the exception of the Social Security Number (SSN), you can correct any Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) field using FAFSA on the Web.

    Certain fields, especially those pertaining to your financial information and marital status, should not be changed unless your answers were incorrect on the day your FAFSA was submitted. The fields that should not be changed include "on the day you submitted your FAFSA" in the question.

    If you filed a FAFSA using an incorrect SSN, you can change that SSN by either entering the correct one on a paper Student Aid Report (SAR), or asking the financial aid office at one of the colleges listed on your SAR to change it for you. Otherwise, you must file a new FAFSA with the correct SSN. Contact the financial aid office at your college with questions, or to determine if there are deadlines you need to meet.

    If you need a paper SAR, you can call the Federal Student Aid Information Center to request a copy. Refer to the Help page for contact information.

     

  • Can I save my application information?

    Yes. You can save your information at any point in the application. To save the application, click Save at the bottom of any Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) page. Do not use the Save commands that are built into the browser.

    Note: To retrieve your saved application, you must provide your first name, last name, Social Security Number, date of birth, and the password entered when you began your initial FAFSA.

    If you are disconnected from the FAFSA on the Web site at any time, your application will be automatically saved and you can retrieve it after 45 minutes.

    If you do not remember your password, you can reset it by clicking forgot my password or contact customer service.

    Saved applications are automatically deleted after 45 days or after the federal application / correction deadline date. (Click Deadlines on the home page to see the federal application / correction deadline dates).

     

  • What should I do if my last name has changed?

    You should change your last name at the Social Security Administration (SSA), and, when that change is processed, you can apply for a new Federal Student Aid PIN using your new last name. To apply for a new PIN, go to the PIN Web site at www.pin.ed.gov and click Apply For A PIN.

    You should also change your name on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

     

  • If I submitted a paper FAFSA, can I use FAFSA on the Web to make corrections?

    Yes. FAFSA on the Web allows you to correct your processed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), regardless of the type of application you filed. The only requirement is that you have a Federal Student Aid PIN.

     

  • I just used FAFSA on the Web to correct my FAFSA, but made a mistake. Can I go back and fix it?

    Not yet. Even though you have a confirmation number, you cannot submit a second correction until the first one is processed and your Student Aid Report (SAR) is generated. Your first correction should be processed within 3-5 days and you can make another correction after that time.

WARNING: You must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) completely and accurately. If you do not provide all the information required to process your application, your federal student aid will be delayed and may be denied. The information provided may be verified by your school, your state agency, or Federal Student Aid.

After you submit a FAFSA, you may be asked to provide U.S. income tax returns and / or other information. If you cannot or do not provide these records to your school when asked, you may not receive federal student aid.

If you receive federal student aid based on incorrect or fraudulent information, you will have to pay it back. You may also have to pay fines and fees. If you purposely provide false or misleading information on the FAFSA, you may be fined $20,000, sent to prison, or both.

 

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