helpful hints for completing FAFSA on the Web
It is a good idea to save your application frequently while filing. That way, if the site experiences problems, you do not lose data. Instead, you open a saved application from the FAFSA on the Web home page.
The FAFSA on the Web is a nine-step process
- You must complete all steps in order to submit your application.
- Once the application is submitted you will get a "Submission Confirmation" page, which includes a confirmation number.
- If you do not receive a confirmation number, you have not submitted your application.
In order for parents to sign the application electronically
- They must have a PIN and go to "Provide Electronic Signatures" on the FAFSA on the Web home page.
- This step has to be done after the application is submitted.
- A link to this site is provided on the "Submission Confirmation" page.
You can request a PIN (electronic signature) at any time
- If you provide a valid e-mail address when requesting a PIN, you will be sent a PIN electronically. You will receive an e-mail with a link to get your PIN within 1-3 days.
- If no e-mail address is provided, you will receive a PIN within seven to 10 days.
- By using a PIN, you can cut down on the processing time of the FAFSA.
- If you do not retrieve your electronic PIN within 14 days, it will be mailed to you.
Student E-mail Address and the SAR (Student Aid Report)
If you provide a valid e-mail address in step 9 on the FAFSA, you will receive your Student Aid Report (SAR) electronically, providing signatures have been received (electronic or paper).
- The SAR is confirmation that your FAFSA has been processed.
- If you receive an electronic SAR, you will not receive a paper copy.
- You will receive the electronic SAR within 1-3 days of filing your application if you also signed the application electronically. If you sign using the signature page, you will receive the electronic SAR within 2-3 weeks.
- If the e-mail address you gave is not valid, you will not receive the SAR electronically or by paper. You will have to go to the FAFSA on the Web home page and retrieve your SAR.
- Dependent students may want to include their parents' e-mail address rather than their own if parents will be responsible for financial aid paperwork.
- If no e-mail address is provided or you do not send in the signature page or provide electronic signatures, you will receive a paper SAR.
When you make corrections using the FAFSA on the Web site, you must continue through until you receive the "Submission Confirmation" page with the confirmation number.
- This will ensure that the changes have been submitted.
- You must have a PIN to access corrections on the Web from the FAFSA on the Web home page.
- If parental information is corrected, you must provide the parents' electronic signature (PIN) or print out a signature page for parents to sign.
- Once the corrections have been submitted, the corrected information is processed immediately.
FAFSA on the Web Customer Service Hours and Contact Information
- Customer Service Hours: Monday - Friday 8 a.m. - 12 a.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
- Phone: 1-800-433-3243
- Web Chat: Contact FAFSA representatives live, online, by selecting the "Chat" button located within the application pages.
Retrieving tax transcripts from the IRS
Students and parents who file federal income tax returns for 2011 can use the IRS data retrieval process available through FAFSA on the Web. Beginning this year, families who cannot or prefer not to download tax information into a student’s FAFSA using the IRS retrieval process will need to contact the IRS to request a federal income tax transcript (IRS form 4506-T) from the previous year to verify this information.
- Download, fill out, and mail in a form
- Call 1-800-908-9946