Sweeping FAFSA/loan/grant changes.

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Sweeping FAFSA/loan/grant changes.

Postby Karlfarmer » Tue Jul 09, 2013 12:01 pm

So far, since March, my school has implemented 15 changes to financial aid, leaving 10's of 1000's of students scrambling. It seems every day there is another email from the FA office. Deadlines are coming far earlier to have all the requirements met. Loans are no longer sent out before the term starts, and only $1000 or $1500 in loans will be sent, until the student submits formal paperwork to request more proceeds. More students are having their FAFSA information verfied, which in my case, required 7 pages of additional information. The loan proceeds now match Pell maximums (the 600% rule/150% of credis rule). Also, for spring this year, the FA office was so bogged down in new federal regs, the deadline passed before many people were awarded FA- meaning we had to pay the tuition up front, then wait to see if we received FA. If not, people without the tuition money had to cancel their classes, then scramble to get back in after they did receive FA. Just to rant, and to inform the readers that this is just the beginning- they are making it almost impossibly difficult to meet the challenges required to finally receive a FA award.
Karlfarmer
Graduate Student of Financial Aid
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 4:30 pm

Re: Sweeping FAFSA/loan/grant changes.

Postby edvadmin » Wed Aug 14, 2013 9:40 am

To avoid possible delays we suggest you complete the FAFSA application online. With the new set up they can pull in your tax information from the IRS and that will decrease the processing time and allow you to have all of your information at the FA office when you arrive.
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Re: Sweeping FAFSA/loan/grant changes.

Postby Karlfarmer » Sat Aug 17, 2013 11:21 am

I had no income, so filed no taxes. That alone caused about 5 different new forms to be completed when they sent my file for 'review'. Even though the FAFSA showed no taz dorm was filed, I had to obtain a statement from the IRS that in fact I did not submit a tax return, and wasn't required to. After that, several more forms (all with conflicting information) to elaborate on how I live, pay bills, etc. They also asked for what cash I had on hand (this was May, 2013) just after my financial aid disbursement. Based on that, they altered my FAFSA (which was for the 2012 calendar year) to reflect the amount of cash I had on hand in May, 2013? So, that makes it look as though I tried to hide money when I completed the FAFSA in January. Add to that the food stamps issue, (the FAFSA bypassed that line, yet the school asked if I received food stamps, and said yes- also making it appear I fudged the FAFSA) it's becoming awfully difficult to be able to wade through the requirements to obtain financial aid. My advice for anyone- take it slow, consider the ramifications of and ability to show proof for every item asked for on the FAFSA, and keep detailed records. The complexity will amaze you, if you are new to it all? The big print giveth, and the small print taketh away, for sure...
Karlfarmer
Graduate Student of Financial Aid
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 4:30 pm


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