“You” and “your” always refer to the student who is completing the FAFSA.
Use the name that appears on the student’s Social Security card. Do not
Read the FAFSA instructions before filling out the form and follow the
For the paper FAFSA, print clearly in CAPITAL letters and skip a box between
words. Fill in ovals completely. Do not use an “X” or checkmark. For errors,
use white-out or erase completely. (The paper application is read electronically.
Smudgy or scratched out answers could be misread.)
Check that the Social Security number and birth date are correct.
List the student’s full permanent mailing address.
Answer all questions that require a dollar figure with a number. If your
answer to an income or asset question is zero, write the number “0”. Do not
use NA, not applicable or a dash. Only skip an item if the instructions
specifically state that you should.
Do not leave income information blank if you have not yet prepared your tax
return. You may estimate tax information, although it is recommended that you
use actual tax data if possible for more accurate reporting. If you do estimate,
you must correct the FAFSA later to reflect actual tax information.
Do not report cents – round dollar figures to the nearest whole dollar. (e.g.
report $45,150.65 as 45,151.)
Use annual, not monthly amounts for requested earnings and benefits information.
Do not report the amount of federal income tax withheld from paychecks,
self-employment taxes or state taxes. The correct answer is the amount of tax
paid as reported on the line of the tax return used. If you are estimating
income information because the tax return is not yet prepared, estimate the
tax to be paid.
Report only net worth (value minus debt) of real estate, investments and assets.
Complete Worksheets A, B, and C to compute untaxed income and benefits. Even
though you may have few of the worksheet items, check each line carefully.
On the paper FAFSA, do not make notes in the margins or outside the answer boxes
or spaces. If you feel an answer needs to be clarified, contact the Financial
Aid Office for instructions.
If filing the paper FAFSA, make sure the required signatures are on it. FAFSA
online allows both the student and parent to “sign” electronically with a
PIN that you can secure by applying at www.pin.ed.gov. If the parent does not
have a PIN, a signature page will need to be printed out and mailed in to the
Do not send tax forms, letters or other correspondence with the FAFSA.
They will not be read and will be discarded.
Mail the paper FAFSA to the processor in the envelope provided.
Make copies of the FAFSA to keep for your records. Also, make copies of all
federal income tax returns you submitted to the IRS. (You may be required to
submit copies of tax returns to the school.)
Filing deadline to be considered for University need-based scholarships and campus-based aid
(Perkins loan and SEOG grant) is March 1.