Financial Aid Appeal
You’ve taken the first step in obtaining financial aid towards your degree program by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®). Congratulations if your college financial aid administrator has approved your award. But what if your award is not as much as you expected? What do you do now? Financial Aid Appeal is something you can do to make a case for a higher award. First, remember that FAFSA® is a general form used by most colleges and universities. However, there is no space on the form for your family to describe any special circumstances that may affect their ability to pay for college. And, once the form has been submitted, only college financial aid administrators are allowed to adjust the data fields on the FAFSA, when you provide them with adequate documentation of your special circumstances. In this guide, we will walk you through how to appeal your financial aid decision, make corrections to your FAFSA form along with what happens if the appeal is denied.
What Are You Allowed to Correct on the FAFSA?
Corrections to the FAFSA form means altering any information for accuracy, verification, or status updates. Students can make FAFSA modifications without help by correcting a Student Aid Report (SAR) or submitting an updated FAFSA online. Data you can correct yourself include:
- Incorrect Social Security Number
- Mistakes on the Form
How to Make Corrections to FAFSA?
- Log on to the FAFSA website with your FSA ID
- Choose the “make FAFSA corrections” option
- If needed change contact information and/or dependency status for changes that do not relate to marriage
Start by consulting the college financial aid administrator to determine if a FAFSA needs updating. Additionally, if you have a marital change, you should reach out to financial aid departments to determine how the change impacts the dependency status.
When you submit a FAFSA, it should represent your situation on the day of your application. For this reason, students should only update certain FAFSA sections beyond contact information and only in specific circumstances, such as verification. If unsure, candidates should ask their financial aid departments about updating the following sections:
- Your Dependency Status
- Number of People in Your Household
- Number of College Students in Your Household
Applicants should leave the majority of the FAFSA fields unchanged since the document reflects your situation at first submission. Candidates can also make corrections on the SAR or ask financial aid departments to update a FAFSA. FAFSA deadlines vary by state, so applicants should research state requirements to ensure punctual submission