Application

Students seeking any kind of federal, state or institutional financial aid, including Pell Grants, must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Applications are available in English and Spanish and can be filed on paper or online.

Paper copies of the FAFSA are available at most high school guidance offices. They can also be found at college financial aid offices, vocational schools, libraries, community and state agencies, and by contacting the Pell Grant Program directly at:

Pell Grant
Box 84
Washington, D.C. 20044
1-800-433-3243

Students do not need to complete the entire Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application each year they apply for financial assistance. Returning applicants instead use an abbreviated version of the application called a Renewal FAFSA.

Documentation

Students need the following information in order to complete their FAFSA:

  • Actual or estimated tax returns
  • W-2 Forms and other records of earnings
  • Records of untaxed income (e.g. Social Security, CalWORKs, and veteran’s benefits records)
  • Investment records
  • Bank statements
  • Mortgage information
  • Business and farm records
  • Driver’s license, and
  • Social Security Number.

For married or dependent students, family financial information will be needed as well.

Application Fees

There is no charge to file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Deadlines

To be eligible for a grant for the following academic year, the FAFSA must be received by June 30. Web applications must be completed by midnight, Central Daylight Time, June 30. Students should bear in mind that deadlines for state and institutional financial aid may be earlier than the federal deadline. They should submit their FAFSA accordingly.

Processing Time

It takes approximately two to four weeks for the Federal Student Aid (FSA) program to process a FAFSA and produce a Student Aid Report (SAR). The SAR details the student’s financial information and Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Each financial aid office specified by the student on the FAFSA will get a copy of the student’s SAR. If the student is accepted at the school, the financial aid office uses the SAR to calculate a financial aid package for the student.

Tracking Progress

Progress of the FAFSA can be tracked online or by calling the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-433-3243.