Changes to the FAFSA, particularly the early release date, will mean easier filing and quicker feedback for students applying to college this year.
Starting this year, the FAFSA form is available on Oct. 1. Parents and their children are able to get a head start on filing the tax information and financial detail, in comparison to the previous Jan. 1 release of the form.
“Your parents can go in the FAFSA and use taxes from 2015,” Mrs. Scott, a guidance counselor, said. “There used to be a lag time, but with the prior-prior systems the taxes are more accurate.”
This means that instead of using tax information from 2016, applicants will be able to use already available data from 2015. For example, students who are applying for loans for the 2017-2018 school year can start filling out the FAFSA now with tax information from 2015. Previously, the FAFSA was not available to fill out until Jan. 1 when most parents did not have their previous year’s tax information finalized.