Prepare for the FAFSA

Here is all the information you will need to gather to complete the FAFSA.

Student & Parent Info

  • Parent(s) and student’s full legal name and birth date
  • Parent(s) and student’s Social Security Number (SSN), permanent resident card, green card, or I-94 (if your parent does not have a SSN you can still apply)

  • Parent(s) and student’s separate mobile phone numbers
  • List of schools the student is considering
  • Student driver’s license (if student has one)
  • Parent(s) marital status (married, separated, or divorced and dates (month and year)

A contributor is anyone who is required to provide information on the FAFSA; that means the student, parent, and spouse might all be referred to as “contributors” on the FAFSA. 

How to Create Your FSA ID

Use your FSA ID to confirm your identity when you access your financial aid information and electronically sign your federal student aid documents, including the FAFSA. A Social Security number is required to register for an FSA ID for both parent and student.

Download Additional FSA ID Details (PDF)

FSA ID Instructions

Both the parent and student need to create separate FSA IDs

  1. Visit FSA ID 
  2. Enter your email
  3. Create a username and password
  4. Enter your legal name, date of birth, Social Security number, contact information, and challenge questions and answers
  5. Confirm your cell phone and email address with the secure code sent to your phone and email.

FSA ID Details

  • FSA ID is a username and password
  • FSA ID is used to access your FAFSA and view your financial aid information
  • FSA ID is used to sign your documents electronically
  • Enter your legal name, date of birth, valid Social Security number, and contact information, and select challenge questions
  • Use a personal email when creating your FSA ID (Do not use your school-assigned email)
  • Student and parent(s) both create separate FSA IDs using separate phone numbers and emails.
  • FSA ID will be verified in 1 to 3 days (check your email)
  • Go to to create your FSA ID

Register your mobile phone number

  1. When prompted, enter your mobile phone number.
  2. To verify the number, a secure code will be texted to your phone. The text may take a few minutes to arrive.
  3. You must then enter the secure code within 30 minutes on the verification page on the FSA ID website and select “Submit.”
  4. Once the mobile phone number has been verified, this mobile phone number can also be used to log in.

Tax & Financial Information

  • Parent(s) and student’s federal tax return (If they have one)
  • Parent(s) and student’s W-2 and other records of income
  • Annual amounts of untaxed income received in the household (SSI, Child Support, SNAP Benfits, etc.)
  • Bank statements and records of investments (primary residence is not taken into consideration)

A contributor is anyone who is required to provide information on the FAFSA; that means the student, parent, and spouse might all be referred to as “contributors” on the FAFSA. 

Federal Tax Return Dates
Change to Your Family’s Financial Situation

For the FAFSA 2022-23 award year, your 2020 income tax forms will be used.

If your or your family’s financial situation has changed significantly from what is reflected on your 2020 federal income tax return (for example, if you’ve lost a job or otherwise experienced a drop in income), you may be eligible to have your financial aid adjusted. Complete the FAFSA questions as instructed on the application using your 2020 taxes information (including the transfer of tax return and income information), submit your FAFSA form, then contact the school you plan to attend to discuss how your current financial situation has changed. Note that the school’s decision is final and cannot be appealed to the U.S. Department of Education.

Be sure to select your parent correct tax filing status.

Automatic Tax Form Filled by the IRS Data Retrieval Tool

The IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) allows students and parents who filed a U.S. tax return with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to access the IRS return information needed to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form by transferring the data directly into their forms.

Here’s how the IRS DRT process works, assuming your tax information is available:

The IRS DRT will take you to the IRS website; you’ll need to provide your name and other information exactly as it is shown on your tax return. At the IRS site, you’ll see a page that shows your tax information is available. You can choose to import your information into the FAFSA form. If you choose to import your information into the FAFSA form, you’ll find that on the FAFSA site, instead of your tax information being displayed, you’ll see “Transferred from the IRS” in the appropriate fields. You won’t be able to make changes to those answers.

To learn more go to: IRS Data Retrieval Tool