1. Collect Documents
Collect your parents' and if applicable, your income tax returns, Social Security numbers, W-2 form(s), and other records of income and assets. Tax information can be estimated and corrected later if a tax return has not yet been completed. Get free information and assistance from a school counselor, the Financial Aid Office at the college you plan to attend, or the U.S. Department of Education at www.studentaid.ed.gov or call 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243).
Frequently Asked Questions
How soon after January 1st should I complete the FAFSA? Is it better to wait until your income tax forms have been completed?
At CUNY, the first financial aid awards are sent in early April so it is recommended that you try to file your taxes early and file your FAFSA after you complete your taxes. It is better to file your taxes early, it is ok to use estimates of your income, as long they are not very far off from the actual values. You will have an opportunity to correct it later.
What information do I need to complete a FAFSA?
- Social Security numbers of student and parents' (parents Social Security numbers are needed for dependent students)
- Federal Student Aid PIN number(s)
- W-2 forms and other records of money earned by student and parents, if you are a dependent student
- Students and parents' federal income tax returns (parents tax return is needed for dependent students and spouses tax return is needed for independent students)
- Current bank statements Current business and investment mortgage information, business and farm records, stock, bond and other investment records
- Alien registration card, if you're not a U.S. citizen