2012-2013 FAFSA: What’s changed? | 01.10.12

Posted in FAFSA, Financial Aid, News By Student Loan Network Staff

Father and Daughter on ComputerThe Department of Education has been making great strides in streamlining the often-confusing online FAFSA form. This year, students and parents should find it much easier to navigate through the process, as well as collect the information necessary to file the form.

Here’s what you can expect to find in the improved 2012-2013 FAFSA:

  • Easier online navigation- The sections and questions have been reordered to make it easier to navigate. This best part of this is that the system now knows where you left off, so if you fill out the form over a few sessions, there’s no more searching for your next steps. Plus, it’s “skip logic” has been improved. This means that the system will eliminate unnecessary questions based on what you’ve already answered, making less work for you!
  • Updated notifications – In addition to previous notifications such as the Student Aid Report (SAR) and confirmation emails, students may now get various reminder emails depending on how they file. For example, if you file using only tax estimates, you can expect an email in mid-March reminding you to go back and enter the actual numbers.
  • IRS Data Retrieval enhancements – IRS Data Retrieval is an easy way for parents and students to auto-fill the FAFSA with their filed tax information. This year, it’s available starting February 1 for those who are eligible to use it. If you’ve already filed taxes, it will display the option to retrieve your IRS data, but if you haven’t filed yet, you will not see this option. For more information on how IRS Data Retrieval works, read IRS Data Retrieval Tool for FAFSA.
  • Updated correction process – The Department of Education has made sure that students who need to file corrections can do so more easily. Previously, the correction section didn’t really match the rest of the form, making it a little tough to figure out. Now, students will already be familiar with the layout, making it easier to file any corrections.

So now that you know what changes are in store, head on over and start your application! If you need help, don’t forget to check out our FAFSA form guide!


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