FAFSA student aid filings begin October 1

FAFSA student aid filings begin October 1”

They recommend filing a new FAFSA application each year - first as a high school senior and in every subsequent year of college and graduate school - "regardless of whether you think you will qualify for funding". But that one form can give qualified students access to other financial aid, including Illinois' Monetary Award Program, or MAP grants. Mistake Number 2: Ruling out federal student loans.

"We try as hard as we can to work with the students to get them to file the FAFSA", said Julie Harper, John Wood Community College financial aid coordinator. The service is an outgrowth of research conducted by Ben Castleman, a University of Virginia education professor, who found that engaging students through text messages increased their completion of the FAFSA by about 12 percent.

A student's eligibility and amount they qualify for can vary year-over-year. The network also provides schools with toolkits for hosting FAFSA events. Prior-prior (from two years ago) year information is used so students can receive an estimate of aid eligibility without waiting for tax season to apply. In past years, students were unable to apply for federal and state financial aid until the first of the year.

Completing the FAFSA is the only way to receive federal student loans, which NerdWallet said offer more protections and typically lower interest rates than private student loans. Then you can decide after you find out what you received. However, your school or state typically has much earlier deadlines. for the 2017-2018 school year; Illinois' deadline is as soon as possible after October 1, 2017, because funds will be distributed until they are depleted.

Higher education advocates are eager to see the momentum behind last year's surge in applications continue, though many anxious about whether the Education Department would have a popular online tool that makes the process easier ready for the FAFSA launch. The benefit of using this tool is that data are transferred directly from the IRS and automatically populate the form, which saves time and ensures greater reporting accuracy. The data tool has been offline for months, but Education Department spokeswoman Liz Hill said it is up and running. Because some financial aid is doled out on a first-come, first served basis, completing the form early can boost your chance of getting that aid.

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