Monday, January 10, 2011

Top 10 tips for completing the FAFSA

10. Check your eligibility for federal student aid.
9. Complete your tax return. If you and your parents complete your tax returns first, completing the FAFSA will be much easier. Plus, you won't have to correct the tax information later.
8. Do a little research before hand, reviewing frequently asked questions about the FAFSA.
7. Apply for a PIN prior to completing the FAFSA. With a PIN, you can electronically sign your application, make corrections to your submitted application, and review your processed application data on the web.
6. Gather the necessary information before you sit down to complete the FAFSA. You will need the following:
Your Social Security number (can be found on Social Security card)
Your driver's license (if any)
Your 2008 W-2 Forms and other records of money earned
Your 2008 Federal Income Tax Return
Your parents' 2008 Federal Income Tax Return (if you are a dependent student)
Your 2008 untaxed income records (Social Security, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, welfare, or veterans benefits records)
Your most recent bank statements
Your most recent business and investment mortgage information, business and farm records, stock, bond, and other investment records
Your alien registration number or permanent residence card (if you are not a U.S. citizen)
5. Print a FAFSA on the Web worksheet. Write in your answers and gather your parents' information then enter the data to FAFSA on the Web.
4. Find out the federal codes for the schools you'll enter on the FAFSA.
3. Complete the FAFSA electronically. It's best to complete the FAFSA online, as this reduces errors.
2. Sign the FAFSA electronically. You'll need a PIN to do so (see tip #7 above).
And the number one tip for completing the FAFSA is . . .
If you need help, ask!

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