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Changes to FAFSA

From https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/about/announcements/fafsa-changes

On Sept. 14, 2015, President Obama announced significant changes to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) process that will impact millions of students. Starting next year, students will be able to do the following:

  • Submit a FAFSA® Earlier:  Students will be able to file a 2017–18 FAFSA as early as Oct. 1, 2016, rather than beginning on Jan. 1, 2017. The earlier submission date will be a permanent change, enabling students to complete and submit a FAFSA as early as October 1 every year. (There is NO CHANGE to the 2016–17 schedule, when the FAFSA will become available January 1 as in previous years.)
  • Use Earlier Income Information: Beginning with the 2017–18 FAFSA, students will report income information from an earlier tax year. For example, on the 2017–18 FAFSA, students (and parents, as appropriate) will report their 2015 income information, rather than their 2016 income information. 

The following table provides a summary of key dates as we transition to using the early FAFSA submission timeframe and earlier tax information.

When a Student Is Attending College (School Year)

When a Student Can Submit a FAFSA

Which Year’s Income Information Is Required

July 1, 2015–June 30, 2016

January 1, 2015–June 30, 2016

2014

July 1, 2016–June 30, 2017

January 1, 2016–June 30, 2017

2015

July 1, 2017–June 30, 2018

October 1, 2016–June 30, 2018

2015

July 1, 2018–June 30, 2019

October 1, 2017–June 30, 2019

2016

If you’d like more details about the upcoming changes, you may read the following informational pieces from the U.S. Department of Education and the White House:

We will update this site as the 2017–18 FAFSA launch approaches. For now, there is nothing you need to do.

 
 

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