7 Tips Everyone Should Know When Completing the FAFSA

FAFSASome people call this  “Tax Season”. If you are a student at a University it may also be “FAFSA Season.” Kenton Davis, financial aid administrator at Globe University-Eau Claire  has seven tips for students and parents as they approach FAFSA season. 

Kent states,”Tax time always brings welcome relief with dreams of what to do with your refund.  We may plan a vacation, pay bills, or even sock it away.  With tax time also comes that time of year to renew your FAFSA. Yes, that once per year application to determine what you will qualify for in Federal financial aid.”

As you transition from completing your taxes to completing your FAFSA, the following are a few helpful hints that will make the process a little smoother.

  1. Make sure you have your four-digit PIN available.  You will need this to sign your FAFSA electronically when you are all done.  If you do not remember your PIN, you can request a duplicate at www.pin.ed.gov.  Simply select “Request duplicate PIN” and insert your information.  You can either have your PIN “Displayed Now,” which is the default, or emailed to you.
  2. Have your taxes available when you complete your FAFSA (done electronically at www.fafsa.ed.gov).financial aid
  3. The Department of Education is transitioning students to automatically link their taxes to their FAFSA. This is done through the “IRS Data Retrieval Tool.”  You will want to use this if at all possible.  It will make completing your FAFSA much simpler.  Once your information has been transferred from your taxes, DO NOT make any changes to a box on the FAFSA which states “Transferred from IRS.”
  4. When using the IRS link you will first be asked to select an option. One of the options is “Recently Filed My Taxes.”  Even if you have done this recently – do not select this option as it will not allow you to transfer your information.
  5. The IRS Link will require your address; this must match the address on your taxes exactly.  Additionally, the link will require you to select your filing status (single, head of household, married filing jointly etc.); this also must match exactly.
  6. You will want to wait to complete your FAFSA approximately 2-3 weeks from when you have electronically submitted your taxes.  This will allow the IRS retrieval tool to link with your FAFSA.
  7. Complete/sign/date a 2013/2014 School Form – this must be done if you wish to receive financial aid.  Forms are located at the front desk.

 If you have any questions, always feel free to contact someone in the Financial Aid Department.