2 Overview The financial aid equation Who gets the money? Types of financial aid –GrantsScholarshipsWorkLoansHow to apply for financial aidFree scholarship searches
3 What Financial Aid Offers Access to funds to help pay for4-year public and independent colleges and universitiesCommunity collegesPrivate career collegesChoice among schoolsChoose the best academic, career, cultural, and social fit rather than the least expensive program
4 ApplicationsFederal – FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)State – FAFSA and GPA Verification FormInstitutional – Various forms may include the CSS Profile.
5 What is the FAFSA? FAFSA – Free Application for Federal Student Aid notUsed to determine how much need a family has by looking at income, assets and family size.Need is determined by the EFC – Expected Family Contribution.The FAFSA uses federal methodology to calculate each family’s EFC.Each school you list is electronically sent the results of the application so they can determine your eligible aid.
6 *Financial “need” determines aid eligibility Determining NeedCost of Attendance- Expected Family ContributionFinancial Need**Financial “need” determines aid eligibility
7 Types of Aid Grants Gift aid based on income and circumstances Scholarships/Merit AwardsGift aid based on grades and achievementLoansAid to be repaidWork StudyWork to earn programs that can be used to help with the costs
8 Sources of Aid Federal Government Grants, Loans and Work Study State GovernmentCal Grant and Chafee GrantInstitutionsGrants, Scholarships, Loans and Work StudyPrivate foundations/organizationsScholarships and Loans
9 Federal Application 2015-16 FAFSA became available January 1, 2015 File early, but no later than March 2, 2015Use 2014 income information if taxes are not complete at time of FAFSA submission to estimateStudent and at least one parent must complete and sign the FAFSABest to complete the form electronically.
10 Create a file for copies of all financial aid documents submitted Federal ApplicationBefore starting the FAFSA, gather:Student driver’s licenseStudent Alien Registration CardStudent and ParentSocial Security cards2014 W-2 Forms and other records of money earned2014 federal income tax formRecords of untaxed incomeCurrent bank statementsBusiness, farm and other real estate recordsRecords of stocks, bonds and other investmentsCreate a file for copies of all financial aid documents submitted
11 Federal Application Access You can contact the Department of Education by:Phone: FEDAID orLive Help (chat): available on website
12 Early Estimates FAFSA4Caster Allows you to get an estimate if you are not ready or able to complete the FAFSASaves information and imports it to your actual FAFSA when availablePrepares you for the questions and offers additional assistanceAvailable at
13 Net Price CalculatorNew regulations state that every US school must have a standardized calculator to give families an idea how much it will cost to attend.Different schools = different calculatorsSome schools use a generic calculatorSome schools have broad rangesSome schools use the lowest estimateOutput is only as accurate as the information entered
14 FAFSAMake sure you use the student’s demographic information and not parent information when setting up the FAFSA
15 FAFSABe sure to select !Request a duplicate PIN or a new one
16 FAFSA Apply for a PIN at: www.pin.ed.gov PIN serves as the electronic signatureBoth student and at least one custodial parent need PIN to sign the FAFSA electronicallyMay be used to:Check on FAFSA statusVerify and correct FAFSA dataAdd additional schools to receive FAFSA dataChange home and addressesIf you select your “four number” PIN, it is automatically activatedApply for a PIN at:
17 Student Information Use your proper name Use student SSN and DOB Use student to ensure that the report is sent to you as the studentIf male, Selective Service is required to receive federal aid
18 Student Information Smart form You must be a US citizen or eligible non-citizen for federal aidBe careful with stating what degree you will be working onConsider marking yes to work study
19 Student InformationEnter the name, city, and state of the high school where you received or will receive your high school diploma.
20 Student Information – Drug Abuse If convicted of drug use, possession or sale, the student is not eligible for federal student aid.Schools may offer a means to rehabilitate this status.
21 Student Information – Schools List a California college or university first (for Cal Grant consideration)It’s important that you get your FAFSA information to the right schools.You can select up to 10 schools & after this submission, can substitute the original schools for additional schools.
22 Student Information – Housing Status Select a housing statusCan be updated directly on FAFSA or with school
23 Student Information - Dependency These questions determine if a student is independentAge: 24 versus 18Claiming a student on a tax returnFoster youthEmancipated minorsLegal guardianship does not include biological parents
24 Dependency Status Results For dependent students, a special circumstance is a situation that exists between the student applicant and his or her parent(s) which prevents the student from providing parental information.Select I will provide parental information to continue to Parent Demographics.Select I am unable to provide parental information to get additional information about special circumstances.
27 Student Information - Dependency If found to be a dependent student, you must provide parent information.You can skip this step if you are a dependent student that should be considered a special circumstance.Documentation will be required.
28 Parent Information Provide Information on: Biological or adoptive parent(s)Stepparent (regardless of any prenuptial agreements)Do not provide information on:Foster parent(s), student is automatically considered an independent studentLegal guardian(s) or grandparent(s) or other relative(s) unless they have legally adopted you.Student may request a dependency override in certain circumstances, contact a Financial Aid Office for more information
29 Parent InformationYou must select the answer that describes your parents' marital status as of today.Can not be left blankUse parent SSN and DOBList yourSchools may use to communicateLegal residenceCal Grant eligibilityHousehold sizeChildren, parents, anyone else supported > 50%Number in collegeParents in college
30 Parent Information Undocumented Do not use your Federal Tax Payer ID Number as a social security number.When asked to provide your social security number, enter all zeroes.When asked if you have filed taxes for 2014, answer “not going to file.”You will not be able to apply for a pin number to sign the FAFSA. You will need to print a signature page and mail it immediately.
31 Parent Information – Marital Status What is your parent’s marital status as of today?When did your parents get married or remarried?1516 FAFSA will allow marriage update for parent and student.Up to each school to approve each requestIf your custodial parent is not married, this “smart form” will ask for which parent you are completing the form.The parent that provides more than 50% of the support over the past 6 months will list financial information and sign with PIN.
32 Parent InformationDon’t wait until your taxes have been completed to file your FAFSA!
33 Parent InformationIf you select “Already Completed”, you will be prompted to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.This allows you to automatically sync your FAFSA with IRS data.Meets verification requirements.
37 Parent InformationYou can estimate using the income estimator if neededHints on the side help you locate AGI and wages based on 1040 or W-2
38 Parent Information – Work Status Is the Parent a Dislocated Worker?A person may be considered a dislocated worker if he / she:is receiving unemployment benefits due to being laid off or losing a job and is unlikely to return to a previous occupation;has been laid off or received a lay-off notice from a job;was self-employed but is now unemployed due to economic conditions or natural disaster; oris a displaced homemaker.Note: If you answer Yes, the financial aid administrator at your college may require proof that your parent is a dislocated worker.
39 Parent Information How much did your parents pay in income tax? Line 55 of IRS 1040 federal tax returnTaxes paid is not the amount withheld on theW-2 Form! It is:amount withheld plus any check sent with thetax return orthe amount withheld minus any refund.
40 Parent InformationEnter the number of tax exemptions your parents will claim for 2014.IRS Form 1040 – Use Line: 6dThis does not need to match the household size (but it often does).The student does not need to be claimed on the tax return of the custodial parent
41 Parent InformationSome untaxed income information is found on your 1040 tax return, other items are not.If you answer yes to the asset question, you will provide:Current cash balanceInvestment net worthBusiness net worth (100 or more employees)
42 Student Tax Information The directions to complete the student section are the same as those outlined for the parents.
43 Student AssetsIt is better for 529 assets to be reported under the parent(s)’ name if possible.Any other asset in the student’s name must be reported.
44 Signing the FAFSAIt is recommended that you sign the FAFSA electronically with a PIN number for the student and the parent.Must have a SSN to receive a PIN. Families can also mail signature pages.
46 Scholarship Opportunities Outside ResourcesCommunity: Rotary, YMCA, ElksParent’s EmployerWeb Sites:Time spent on searches… Worthwhile?Outside Scholarships can replace loans/workTipsBe CautiousLimit DependencyDo your HomeworkRefer to institutional resources on the web
47 Special Circumstances Contact the Financial Aid Office if:Loss or reduction in parent or student income or assetsDeath or serious illnessUnusual medical or dental expenses not covered by insuranceReduction in child support, social security benefits or other untaxed benefitFinancial responsibility for elderly grandparentsAny other unusual circumstances that affect a family’s ability to contribute to higher education
48 Summary of the Financial Aid Process Submit all required forms, including FAFSA, by each college’s published deadlines (but no later than March 2)By March 2 submit a Cal Grant GPA Verification FormKeep a copy of all forms submittedReview the electronic Student Aid Report (SAR)Acknowledgement or the paper SAR sent to the studentReview the California Aid Report (CAR)Watch for financial aid award notifications from colleges to which the student has been admittedBe sure to apply for financial aid this year and every year as soon as possible after January 1 to receive the best financial aid award possibleASK QUESTIONS!