I didn't submit my FAFSA in January. Are there any penalties?
A FAFSA form should be submitted as soon as possible after January 1. Most schools' deadlines are well in advance of the corresponding state and federal deadlines. And many colleges award aid on a first-come, first-served basis.
Do I need a Social Security number?
Yes. It is required to be eligible for federal student financial aid. A FAFSA application will be returned to you unprocessed without a SSN.
Should I wait until income taxes are done?
No. It is okay to use estimates of income as long as they are not far from the actual tax return submitted to the government. Most states require the FAFSA to be submitted by March 1 and some even as early as the first two weeks of February.
If my parents are divorced, whose tax and salary info should I use?
You should probably use the information from the parent you lived with for the majority of the previous 12 months. If you are a dependent student and your parent is remarried, your step-parent's information must be included.
I live with someone other than my parents? What should I report?
Report any cash support provided as untaxed income. You do not have to report in-kind support such as food.
Is a new FAFSA required to be filed every year?
If student financial aid was applied for the previous year, you may not have to complete an entirely new FAFSA. A Renewal FAFSA is available. With a Renewal FAFSA, only new financial data and changed non-financial information must be completed.
What should I answer for the question asking if I am interested in student loans?
Answer yes. Otherwise, you are limiting your options. Most students do take out the student loans included in their financial aid award. There is no obligation to accept any student aid offered.