What Information Do You Need for Your FAFSA Form

For college students seeking federal financial aid, the first step is filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA form. This report details your financial situation and helps determine your financial need based on your unique situation. It's a good idea to gather necessary documents, information and statements before you sit down to fill out the FAFSA.

Household Info: Get your social security card and driver's license, as well as that of your parents. The FAFSA form will ask you for the numbers for everyone listed on the FAFSA. If you are a non-resident of the US, you will need to supply information from your residency documentation.

If only one parent is supporting you due to death or divorce, just include that parent's information. You should provide the information on the parent with whom you lived more than 50 percent of the time in the past year. For students who lived with both parents equally or split time between two separated parents, both people's information is required.

Financial Data: Because the FAFSA form asks you to estimate how much your family contributions will be, a lot of personal financial information is needed. You'll need to supply information found on your W-2 employment forms, as well as your federal income tax records for the last year. You will need to supply information from your parents' federal income tax returns as well if you are claimed as a dependent of theirs. The FAFSA form will require information on your current bank statements and any investment information you have, such as stocks or bonds.

Because the FAFSA can be turned in anytime after January 1, many applicants mistakenly believe that they can't apply until they've completed the previous year's income taxes. While you should ideally have your taxes completed before filing the FAFSA, you might miss out since aid is given on a first-come, first-serve basis. You can complete the application based on calculating your adjusted gross income and looking at previous records.

However, if you have to make substantial corrections to that number later, it may mean that you'll have to return any loan money you got because of that previously inaccurate information. Contact the financial aid offices of the schools to which you are applying if you think there may be changes between when you submit the FAFSA and when you complete the tax return.

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By following a few free FAFSA tips, you may be able to increase your chances at getting grants and loans. When you fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Financial Aid (FAFSA), you are presenting your financial information to be reviewed by colleges.

It's not difficult to apply for financial aid for college. Once you know the basic steps to getting the money that you need for school, it will be easy to get everything done on time. If you follow these steps, you'll be able to take advantage of different types of financial assistance available.

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What does FAFSA stand for? "FAFSA" means "Free Application for Federal Student Aid," and it has been helping college students get financial aid since 1992.

If you have filled out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, you may have some questions about what happens next. Read on to learn what to expect after you fill out your FAFSA.

Your FAFSA application must be submitted after January 1 of the year in which you will require financial aid. Submitting as close as possible to that date will increase your chances of fast approval and will demonstrate your commitment to gaining a higher education.

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