Norma Phelan » Financial Aid

Financial Aid

FAFSA - Free Application for Federal Student Aid  https://fafsa.ed.gov/

Completing the FAFSA is the first step in the financial aid process.  All eligible students should complete the FAFSA beginning October 1st of their senior year.  This year, the state has implemented a priority deadline of January 15th.  This is the deadline by which you should complete the FAFSA to ensure you will receive all the money for which you are eligible.

 

What you can do before Oct. 1st of your senior year:

  • Create your username/password for the FAFSA or FSAID.  (Refer to videos below or the following PDF: https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/sites/default/files/creating-using-fsaid.pdf
  • The student and one parent must create their FSAID to serve as their electronic signature for completing the FAFSA.
  • Be sure your parents have filed their previous year's taxes.  You will need this information to complete your FAFSA.
  • Parents are able to use their prior-prior year taxes.  For example, for the 2020-2021 FAFSA parents will use their tax returns from 2018.  
  • If there have been any significant changes in the students'/family's financial situation in the year after the taxes were filed, contact the financial aid office of the colleges where you plan to apply.  They will let  you know what additional documentation may be needed.
 
 

To complete the FAFSA, you will need:

  • Your Social Security Number
  • Your Alien Registration Number (if you are not a U.S. citizen)
  • Your federal income tax returns, W-2s, and other records of money earned. (Note: You may be able to transfer your federal tax return information into your FAFSA using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.)
  • Bank statements and records of investments (if applicable)
  • Records of untaxed income (if applicable)
  • An FSA ID to sign electronically
 
 
If you are a student that is not a U.S. resident/citizen, you are not eligible to complete the FAFSA.  There's good news though!  You may be eligible for state funding.   Complete the TASFA, which stands for the Texas Application for State Federal Aid.  Below is a link to find out more information about the TASFA and how to access the TASFA.
 
 
 

FAFSA 2020-2021 Quick Instructions – Use your parent’s 2018 tax information

  • Go to fsaid.ed.gov to create a FSAID (Username and Password). Use a personal email account you will have access to after you graduate.  You will need to verify your FSAID through this email.  Keep this information in order to complete your FAFSA every year you are in college.
  • ONE parent needs to create an FSAID as well using a separate email account. If you have older siblings in college have completed their FAFSA recently, your parent may have already created one.  They may use this same FSAID.
  • Go to fafsa.ed.gov and log in to the school year you plan to apply FAFSA funds (2020-21).
  • You will be asked to create a “save key” to access your application. See the information on the right hand side of the screen for more details.  This is a temporary password that is usually only good for that day.
  • Complete student information including adding up to 10 colleges where you want your FAFSA sent for next school year.
  • Complete parent information. Parents may be eligible to use the IRS Retrieval Tool, which will complete most of the required tax information on the FAFSA for you.
  • Check for errors. Call FAFSA if you have any technical difficulties or have questions about tax information, etc.  1-800- 4 – FED – AID / (1-800-433-3243)
  • Submit your FAFSA by providing your FSAID and parent’s FSAID as an electronic signature.
  • You should receive a copy of your confirmation page via email.
 

** Sibling Transfer: If you have siblings already in college, look for the “transfer your parents’ information into a new FAFSA” hyperlink on the confirmation page.  The link to transfer displays on the "Confirmation" page after you and your parent sign and submit your FAFSA. The link is only available from the "Confirmation" page, so be sure to look for it as soon as you've submitted your FAFSA. You cannot return to the "Confirmation" page later to access the link. 

 

Make sure you have your pop-up blocker turned off before you click on the link.  Have the sibling’s FSAID ready to make sure this process goes smoothly.

 
 
 
For everything you need to know about financial aid, refer to the Student Aid website:
 
 
Beginners Guide to FAFSA