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We recommend students submit the FAFSA form each year prior to March 1st.
You complete the FAFSA online at www.fafsa.gov .
Students can submit the FAFSA form anytime from Jan. 1st through the end of the academic school year in which the student wants aid. We recommend March 1st for a couple of reasons. First, some types of financial aid, such as work-study and the Perkins loan, are limited funding sources. We award aid based on date of application, so the earlier you apply, the more likely we will be able to qualify you for all forms of funding available. Second, it takes time for the financial aid forms to be reviewed, and additional paperwork is sometimes needed before aid can be offered. Applying early allows the Financial Aid Office the time needed to thoroughly review your application, request documents, and determine your aid eligibility.
You can correct many errors on your FAFSA electronically. You can correct things like: your address, grade level, degree pursuit, misreported income and household size, add a college code and more. To make corrections, go to www.fafsa.gov and select "Make corrections to a submitted FAFSA ." (Note: you will need your federal PIN number to submit your corrections electronically).
Go to www.pin.ed.gov to request it again.
The PIN is the 4 digit secret code assigned to someone, which can be used to complete the federal aid application electronically, make corrections, and view your aid history. The DRN is the 4-digit code listed on a students SAR (Student Aid Report) which is needed should a school that wasn't listed on the students FAFSA need access to the data.
The Central Processing System processes over 6 million FAFSA applications each year. The applications are passed through a series of matches with the social security administration, veteran's administration and national loan database among other checks. Schools must individually review any applications that are cited with problems or "flags." Then, once an application is clean, aid is awarded based on stringent federal and state guidelines and procedures. Each aid program has detailed processes by which we can request, voucher and disburse funds to eligible students. Aid eligibility is not only based on the FAFSA application, but also grade level, enrollment status, matriculation, academic progress and sometimes-additional applications and forms. So as you can see, many different agencies, offices, policies and procedures factor into the awarding of financial aid. One way to not feel overwhelmed or frustrated by the process is to apply early, allowing time for the process to run its course.
Verification is a random selection process. On average, 33% of all aid applicants each year are chosen. The Financial Aid Office is required to review the household's federal income tax documents and other household info such as untaxed income and household size, to ensure information was reported accurately on the FAFSA. If information is misreported, the Financial Aid Office is required to correct the data and resubmit the application with the corrected information. If verification has taken place after aid has been awarded, sometimes aid eligibility will need to be predetermined based on the verified data. This is why it is very important that students submit their FAFSA applications accurately from the start.
The verification process cannot be completed and aid cannot be delivered to the student until the income is verified against the federal income tax return. So, it is crucial that each you the student and parent complete their income tax returns as soon as possible.
You can call the IRS at 1 (800) 829-1040 to request a Letter 1722, which is acceptable documentation in lieu of a copy of your original return.
Many factors including your FAFSA results, residency status, housing selection, enrollment plans and date when your FAFSA was received impact what types of aid you were awarded and the amounts. Learn more about how your eligibility is determined .
To qualify for federal financial aid, the FAFSA form must be completed based on the student's status as a dependent or independent student. Questions 52 - 58 of the FAFSA determine the student's dependency status. If the student's response to those 7 questions is "No", the student is considered dependent according to the guidelines of the Federal Student Aid Programs. Parent information must be provided, in order to qualify for financial aid.
In some extreme, documentable circumstances, a student may be considered independent through a process called dependency override. Contact our office to learn more about the criteria that must be in place to be considered for a dependency override.
You may be able to borrow an additional student loan. If your parent cannot help due to bad credit or bankruptcy, you may qualify for an additional unsubsidized student loan. If you have decided to support the costs of your education on your own, you may be eligible for an alternative student loan. Stop by the Financial Aid Office to speak with an advisor to determine the option that best suits your needs.
It is very important for students to realize that the federal and state governments both have specific guidelines regarding minimum academic progress.
These guidelines are different than the standards that are required by the College. A student who does not meet the minimum SAP requirements for federal and/or state aid may be in jeopardy of losing his or her aid eligibility, including student loans, until the minimum standards are met.
If unforeseeable, drastic circumstances prevented a student from making academic progress, he or she may qualify for a financial aid probation or waiver with appropriate documentation of the circumstances. Please refer to the Federal Eligibility Standards and the State Eligibility Standards .
For more information about Financial Aid at SUNY Plattsburgh, please contact:
Financial Aid Office
Location: Kehoe Administration Building, Suite 401-410
Phone: (518) 564-2072
Toll-Free Phone: (877) 768-5976
Our mailing address:Financial Aid Office