The 2024-25 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form is available at studentaid.gov and features a more streamlined application. If you need to apply for financial aid to help pay for attendance at college for Fall 2024, complete the form as soon as you can.
Please note: Colleges and Universities will not receive FAFSA application information until the first half of March.
Congress passed several acts that represented a significant overhaul to the processes and systems used to apply for and offer financial aid. These changes make federal aid more accessible for students and families. At Blackhawk, we are prepared to help guide you through these changes, especially if you are a current or returning student accustomed to the previous FAFSA format.
The federal government also offers a variety of tools and resources to help you through the process. We have highlighted a few below to help get you started. More information is available at studentaid.gov or by calling 1-800-4FEDAID
For general financial aid inquiries, please contact the Blackhawk Financial Aid Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or (608) 757-7664.
Contributor is a new term introduced on the 2024-25 FAFSA form. It refers to anyone asked to provide information on a student's FAFSA form, i.e., the student, the student's spouse, a biological or adopted parent, or the parent's spouse (stepparent).
A Contributor is NOT a grandparent, foster parents, legal guardian, brother or sister, aunt or uncle, even if they helped provide for or raise the student.
Yes. Starting with the 2024-25 FAFSA, parents without a Social Security number will be able to create an FSA ID.
To create an FSA ID, you'll need your Social Security number (SSN). Other information required is full name and date of birth. You'll also need to create a memorable username and password and complete challenge questions and answers to retrieve your account information if you forget it. You'll be required to provide your email address or mobile phone number when you make your FSA ID. Providing a mobile phone number and/or email address that you have access to will make it easier to log in to ED online systems and allow you to verify your FSA ID before using it on the FAFSA and additional account recovery options.
This Federal Student Aid video can help create a step-by-step FSA ID.
Yes. Starting 2024-25, parents and/or spouses who are not U.S. Citizens or Eligible Noncitizens can use their Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to create an FSA ID once their taxes are still required.
Your parents' citizenship status doesn't affect your eligibility for federal aid. For FAFSA purposes, you must provide your parents' income, no matter where they reside. Beginning with the 2024-25 FAFSA, parents without a Social Security number will be able to create an FSA ID and fill out their portion of the student's FAFSA form online.
If the parent you indicate on the FAFSA is the parent who remarried, it'll depend on how they filed taxes. If they filed jointly, only one parent needs an FSA ID. If they filed separately, both parents would need their own FSA ID.
No. You can retrieve your existing FSA ID if you forgot your username and password.
We have seen different situations when a parent creates their FSA ID, verifies it, and is ready to use, and sometimes the system asks them to wait 24-48 hours to use it. It depends on the information matching system.
We recommend creating it a few days before starting the form. FSA IDs made on the day of might work but will not have full functionality yet, like using the Direct Data Exchange (FADDX) to transfer tax information.
Two-step verification, a form of multi-factor authentication (MFA), helps protect your StudentAid.gov account with additional protection from fraud.
Yes! For example, a student and parent cannot use the same phone number for MFA.
This depends on the family's situation. For example, if a student has married parents filing taxes separately, both parents will need to make an FSA ID.
None. Just ensure they are verified and ready to use when the FAFSA 2024-25 opens sometime in December 2023.
Starting 2024-25, a separate signature page will no longer exist. There are two alternative options for contributors to provide consent who do not want to or refuse to create an FSA ID:
The Future Act requires that every contributor on the FAFSA provide consent to share their taxes information in the application so that the IRS can share this information with Federal Student Aid (FSA). All parties whose Federal Tax Information (FTI) is included on a student's FAFSA form must consent annually.
The consent will be required when a student submits a FAFSA, chooses Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) when starting loan repayment, or submits the Total and Permanent Disability discharge (TPD) within the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for totally and permanently disabled students.
The consent is necessary not only for the Department of Education to request federal tax information from the IRS but also to use that FTI in the federal student aid application process, as well as do other things such as redisclose that information to certain eligible entities, such as higher education institutions.
If a student, spouse, or parent doesn't provide consent on the FAFSA, the Student Aid Index (SAI) will not be calculated, and the student will not be eligible for any federal aid.
According to the IRS tax year 2022, these are the thresholds by filing status. If an independent student (and spouse, if married), or a parent of a dependent student, were not required to file a federal income tax return for 2022, then the student will automatically receive a Student Aid Index (SAI) equal to –1500. They still need to provide consent when submitting the FAFSA, so the IRS can confirm to Federal Student Aid (FSA) the student, parents, and spouse didn't file taxes.
No. Starting FAFSA 2024-25, the DRT will no longer exist. After the student, spouse, and/or parent provides consent to the Direct Data Exchange (FADDX), the Federal Tax Information (FTI) will be linked to the application contributor. Federal Student Aid (FSA) will now directly transfer Federal Tax Information (FTI) from the IRS into the FAFSA form as long as the user has provided FSA with the consent to do so.
All users identified as required contributors on a particular FAFSA form will be prompted to provide consent for the IRS to use their Federal Tax Information (FTI). This consent is required to retrieve FTI from the IRS to calculate the student's aid eligibility. If any party to the FAFSA form does not provide consent, submission of the form will still be allowed. However, a Student Aid Index (SAI), which replaces the Expected Family Contribution (EFC), will not be calculated.
Starting with the Simplified FAFSA, students will determine which parent to report based on which one provides the most financial support. It is ok if the parent or parents reported do not claim the student on their taxes. The reported parents will provide consent to transfer their taxes data even if they do not claim the student on their taxes.
Yes. If the parent providing more financial support is remarried, the stepparent's tax information is required.
Our Federal Aid Advisors can offer to talk directly with the parent or stepparent to explain why that information is needed and answer any questions, which sometimes puts them at ease about how their sensitive info will be used. However, we cannot provide tax advice.
Independent students or parents are the best sources for this estimate; they can also consult their accountant or other financial professional if they have access to one to estimate the amounts to report.
Being self-employed does end up showing business income on tax returns. But it depends on the type of work whether or not they will have to report any assets associated with their business.
Yes. Starting 2024-25, when the student, spouse, parent, and/or stepparent provide consent, the IRS's Federal Tax Information (FTI) will include the information from an amended tax return.
After you provide consent on the FAFSA, if the IRS cannot transfer your Federal Tax Information (FTI) to your FAFSA application, the application will allow you to self-report it. Self-reporting one's tax information on the FAFSA does not override the requirement for each required contributor to provide consent on the FAFSA form. So, two pieces - they need to provide consent, and we need to have their tax information, either directly from the IRS or self-reported manually on the FAFSA form.
Any individual who is a contributor to the FAFSA application must provide consent. This includes parents, and independent students, regardless of their tax filing status. Generally, the parents of independent students are not contributors and would, therefore, not need to provide consent.
Starting 2024-25, there will be only two options for filing a FAFSA form: electronically, through studentaid.gov, or the option to file on paper which will also be available. However, once an application is started online, all parties must complete it online. So that means that if a signature is missing, the parent or the contributor that needs to complete their section and/or sign the application must obtain an FSA ID and get into the application and complete their section.
There is no option to print a signature page any longer. For this reason, financial aid administrators will not be able to submit complete FAFSA forms because of the consent provision that all contributors must provide and sign.
Students and parents will be required to have an FSA ID to complete the FAFSA application online. If they choose to mail a paper FAFSA, both will need to provide consent on the paper FAFSA, and both will need to provide wet signatures and mail the application to the Department of Education address on the paper application. This method is not recommended due to complexity and increased processing time.
Fraud or identity theft are the most likely reasons for the IRS not providing tax information to the applicant or the contributor. If the contributor has been flagged by the IRS, possibly due to identity theft or a breach of some sort to their information, then the IRS response code will be IRS enabled to provide information.
There is no longer a separate signature page, and there won't be a consent signature option on paper. There are two alternative options for contributors to provide consent who do not want to or refuse to create an FSA ID. One option is to submit a paper FAFSA form completed by all contributors and mailed to the Federal Student Aid. This method is not recommended due to complexity and increased processing time.