Completing the FAFSA is Easier than You Think

The deadline for completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for college students, especially Tennessee Promise eligible students, is a little over three weeks away! If you have been putting off completing the FAFSA until the eleventh hour before the deadline, this article was written just for you.

Many parents have a love hate relationship with the FAFSA; they love the benefit of financial aid, but hate the laborious application process. Yes, it is long, but manageable, if . . . you start the process before the week of or day the application is due. So now is a great time to start!

Pacing yourself is helpful. The FAFSA application allows applicants to start, stop, and return later to complete the application, so you do not have to do it all in one sitting. Have the following items ready at hand, and the application should not take more than one hour to complete:

  • An FSA ID to sign electronically. The student and parent will both need a username and password. Create an FSA ID here.
  • Your social security number
  • Your alien registration number (if you are not a U.S. citizen)
  • Driver’s license number
  • List of schools you re interested in attending
  • Your federal income tax returns, W-2s, and other records of money earned. (Note: You may be able to transfer your federal tax return information into your FAFSA form using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool)
  • Bank statements and records of investments, and other assets (if applicable)
  • Records of untaxed income (if applicable)

If the student is a dependent, the previous information will also be needed for the parent.

The College for TN website is a great resource that has videos with step-by-step instructions for completing the FAFSA. Watching the videos before you start will help familiarize you with the application. FAFSA Workshop webinars will be held throughout the month of February with a in-person meeting in Memphis.

The Federal Student Aid Help Center may also be of assistance.

Get started completing the FAFSA today before the March 1, 2023 deadline!

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