Your Key to Unlocking Financial Aid
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a key step in obtaining any financial aid. You can complete it at https://studentaid.gov/ beginning in December of the year prior to attending college. A specific date has not been set for 2023, but we will update this information whenever possible.
Clarke’s Federal School Code is: 001852
Using this number will ensure that Clarke receives your complete FAFSA information.
CHANGES FOR 2024-2025 FILING
Due to the FAFSA Simplification Act, the Free Application of Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is changing for the 2024-2025 academic year. The following are key changes to be aware of. We will continue to update this list as more information becomes available.
Distribution timelines: First time filers can expect to see aid information in January or February 2024. Current students typically receive their aid packages when they register for fall classes in the late spring, such as May or June. Your aid package will be available in time for classes pending you complete all required steps.
Students and Parents must have a FAFSA ID. Part of the Simplification Act streamlines the collection and transfer of applicable IRS data. Due to the sensitivity of this information, all students and parents must log in and sign the FAFSA with a secure ID. Confirm your ID at https://studentaid.gov/fsa-id/sign-in/landing.
- The Expected Family Contribution (EFC) is changing to the Student Aid Index (SAI). This changes how aid is calculated and should qualify more students for Pell grants, which is a form of federal aid that does not need to be repaid.
- Contributor refers to anyone who provides information on the form. It may include the student, student’s spouse, a biological or adopted parent, or the parent’s spouse. If your parents are divorced or separated, the contributing parent is the parent (and their spouse, if remarried) who provided the greater portion of your financial support during the 12 months immediately prior to filing the FAFSA. It is not automatically the parent you primarily live with. Please note: Being a contributor does not imply responsibility for the student’s college costs.
UNDERSTANDING FAFSA VERIFICATION
Verification is a process to confirm the information you and/or your parents provided on your FAFSA is accurate. The U.S. Department of Education randomly selects a FAFSA for verification. The Financial Aid Office will advise you on the documentation you will need, a quick response to any request for documentation will help expedite the verification process.
WHAT DO I HAVE TO DO IF I HAVE BEEN SELECTED FOR VERIFICATION?
If you have been selected for verification you are required to complete the Verification Worksheet, the worksheet will be mailed to the student’s home address. If you did not utilize the IRS Data Retrieval Tool when you initially filed your FAFSA you will need to complete the IRS Data Retrieval Tool at this time. If you are unable to use the tool, then you will need to request a Tax Return Transcript by going to www.irs.gov or 1-800-908-9946.
WILL I STILL GET MY FINANCIAL AID IF I HAVE BEEN SELECTED FOR VERIFICATION?
Your financial aid will not disburse until you complete the verification process. In addition, delays in sending documentation may result in the student not having aid by the time the bill is due each semester. In this case, the student is obligated to pay the account balance on the student’s bill. Once verification has been completed, students will be notified of their financial aid award package or changes to a financial aid award package by email.
I WAS SELECTED FOR VERIFICATION AND HAVE FILED AN AMENDED TAX RETURN, WHAT DOCUMENTS DO I NEED TO PROVIDE?
If you have filed or will file an amended tax return, you have two options for documentation to provide to your school. The first option is a signed copy of both the original tax return you filed with the IRS, as well as the amended return (IRS Form 1040X). The second option is an IRS Tax Return Transcript and a signed copy of the 1040X. While it is not necessary, it is preferred that the IRS Tax Return Transcript be signed as well. If there is any information on the IRS Tax Return Transcript that may have been corrected by the IRS, (noted as “per computer”) and has not been amended on the Form 1040X, this will also need to be corrected if different than what was filed on the FAFSA.