You should pay special attention to the many deadlines in the student financial
aid application process. Missing a deadline could prevent you from receiving some
or all of the aid you are eligible to receive.
What deadlines do I have to meet?
Whether you apply electronically or by mail, the Department of Education must receive
your paper FAFSA or your FAFSA on the Web transmission by midnight Central Daylight
Time on the deadline date, for the school year. If the Department of Education
does not receive your FAFSA or your transmission by that date, your application
will not be processed, and you won't get any federal student aid for the
Each school sets its own deadlines for students to apply for aid from the campus-based
programs (Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant [FSEOG], Federal Work-Study
[FWS], and Federal Perkins Loan) and to apply for the school's own aid. The deadlines
are usually much earlier than the June 30, deadline for filing a FAFSA. Check
with the school for these deadlines. Also, states have their own deadlines for applying
for state aid. Check with your state agency to find out what deadlines you have
to meet. You might miss out on aid from these programs if you don't apply early.
There is also a deadline for your college or career school to receive your SAR.
A valid record is complete and needs no corrections. If you do not list the school
you plan to attend on your FAFSA, the school will not receive an electronic record.
In such a case, there is a school deadline for you to submit a valid paper SAR to
the school's financial aid office. Check with your college or career school for
information on its deadline.
You may need to go to the financial aid office to certify that all the information
on your electronic record is correct or to provide additional information if your
school requests it.
Again, check with your school for more information on additional deadlines. If your
application is selected for verification, your school might ask you to document
that your application information is complete and correct.
Verification? What is that?
Verification is a process we use to make sure that the information applicants report
is accurate. This process prevents ineligible students from receiving aid if they
report false information, and it ensures that eligible students receive all of the
aid they are qualified for.
Each year, we select a group of applications for verification. Some of these applications
are selected because certain FAFSA information is inconsistent with other information
reported on the application; others are chosen at random. Some colleges and career
schools also choose applications for verification.
In any case, if your application is selected, you must give your
financial aid office certain documentation to show that the application
information is correct. The sooner you verify your information, the sooner you'll
be able to receive financial aid if you're eligible. Check with your aid administrator
to find out what the deadlines are to submit your documentation.