How to Complete the FAFSA Form

If you are thinking about filling out a FAFSA application, you may worry that the process will be long and hard. However, what you should know is that the process can be easy and straightforward.

To begin an application, you will need to get a copy of the FAFSA form. From there, the form will guide you thoroughly through the application process to ensure that you do not miss a step.

To apply for FAFSA, you can do so online, through a mobile app or by mail. First, you will need to provide basic personal information regarding you and your parents. Then, you will need to gather the necessary supporting documents. Additional information that you will need to submit includes your federal tax information and records of untaxed income. Once you complete an application, you will need to know what the next steps are to receive financial aid.

How can I fill out a FAFSA form?

To fill out the FAFSA form, you can do so by:

  • Applying online through the official FAFSA website.
  • Filling out the form through the mobile app, available on the App Store for iOS or Google Play for Android.
  • Printing out and mailing the FAFSA PDF.
  • Requesting a print-out of the FAFSA PDF by phone then mailing the form.

Once you choose a FAFSA application method, you can begin the application process. However, it is advised that you fill out the application online or through the mobile app since you can revisit or renew an application at a later time.

How to Create an FSA ID

First, when you begin the federal application for student aid FAFSA form online, it is recommended that you created an FSA ID, which is a combination of a username and password that allows you to sign into your electronic FAFSA form. With an FSA ID, you can also download the mobile app, sign loan applications, and access specific information online. By creating an FSA ID, you are cutting down on the delays and errors in the application process.

Note: If you are a dependent student filling out an application, then one of your parents whose information you are providing on the FAFSA form will also need to create an FSA ID to sign the application electronically. However, if your parent does not have a Social Security Number (SSN), then they will not be able to create an FSA ID since an SSN is required.

What personal information must I submit to apply for student aid?

One of the most crucial FAFSA questions that you may have is which information you will need to provide to apply. Although you need to provide a significant amount of information about you and your parents, you do not need to be overwhelmed. All you need to do is know what you must provide ahead of time.

Related Article: FAFSA Information for Parents

First, when you fill out a FAFSA form, you will need to provide your name, date of birth, and address if you are defined as a dependent student. Then, you will be asked about your financial situation. It is essential that you know that depending on your situations, such as whether you are a U.S. citizen or what tax form you use, you may also need to provide the following information:

  • Your Social Security Number (SSN)
  • Your parent’s SSN
  • Your drivers license number, if applicable
  • Your Alien Registration Number, if you are not a U.S. citizen
  • Federal Tax Information or Tax Returns, including IRS W-2 information
    • For you, your spouse (if applicable) and your parents
  • Records of untaxed income, such as received child support, interest income, and veteran’s education benefits, for you or your parents
  • Information on cash, such as checking and savings balances, investments, real estate, business and farm access, for you and your parents

Note: When you fill out a FAFSA sign up, it is essential that you do not mail your records.

Listing the Colleges You Want to Receive Your FAFSA Information

Now that you know how to fill out a FAFSA application, you must add every college and university that you are considering, even if you have not yet applied or been accepted to them yet. When applying, you must add at least one school to receive your information, and you can add as many schools as you want since there are no penalties for the number of schools you add. Moreover, you can remove schools at a later time if you decide not to apply or attend.

The schools that you add will use your FAFSA information to determine the amounts and types of aid that you may be eligible to receive. Since some states require that you list FAFSA school codes in a specific order, you will need to check with your state before you apply. However, for federal student aid, the order in which you list the schools does not matter.

Note: Schools will not be able to see which other schools you list on your form.

How to Sign and Submit a FAFSA

Now that you are ready to file a FAFSA form, you may think that you are done with the application process. However, you are not done until you and your parent, if you are a dependent student, sign the form. The easiest way to do so is online by logging into your FAFSA application with your FSA ID. If you need help with your login, you can seek help through the FAFSA website.

Can I get help filling out a FAFSA application?

If you have FAFSA questions when you are filling out an application, you may be wondering if you can get help. Through the online portal, you can visit the “FAFSA Help” page. You can also use online tools like the “Tool Tip” feature and the “More Help” link. If you need further help, you can click the “Contact Us” page. Lastly, you can contact the financial aid office at the college you plan to attend.

Related Article: FAFSA Deadlines

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