Changes are coming to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application for the 2024-2025 aid year!
With significant changes to the application and the rebuilding of the FAFSA processing system, the 2024-2025 FAFSA should become available by December 31, 2023.
There are several benefits of the FAFSA Simplification Act, including a more streamlined application process and a better user experience filing the FAFSA, expanded eligibility for federal student aid, and reduced barriers for certain student populations.
- Contributor: anyone who is asked to provide information on the FAFSA such as student, student’s spouse, a biological or adoptive parent(s), and parent’s spouse (stepparent).
- Consent: each contributor will now need to provide their consent to release their Federal Tax Information (FTI) being included in the FAFSA, even if they did not file a U.S. tax return.
- FTI: Federal Tax Information (FTI) transferred directly from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to the FAFSA.
- SAI: the Student Index Aid (SAI) replaces the Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The EFC was previously used to calculate the amount a family could contribute to a student’s education and determine aid eligibility. The SAI is now based on an actual index of the federal poverty level guidelines.
- The streamlined FAFSA is designed to be more user-friendly. Although the number of initial questions may be less, there may be additional questions depending on your answers.
- Applicants will be required to use the IRS Direct Data Exchange (DDX) and directly share tax information to confirm non-filing status. DDX is an improved system that will transfer an individuals’ FTI to the Department of Education within the FAFSA. The DDX will replace the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.
- All "contributors" must provide financial information. If any contributor does not provide consent the Student Aid Index (SAI) will not be calculated, and we will not be able to determine your eligibility for financial aid.
- Consent will be required from all contributors annually.
- The number in college will not be used to calculate SAI.
- Pell grant eligibility will now be based on the poverty guidelines, Student Aid Index, family size and the student/family’s Adjusted Gross Income.
- The parent responsible for submitting the FAFSA in cases of divorce or separation has changed:
- For students whose parents are divorced or separated, the parent on your FAFSA will be the parent who provides you with the most financial support and will no longer be the parent with whom you lived with the most over the past 12 months. (If the parent contributor is remarried, stepparent information will also need to be included on the FAFSA.) Students will be able to use the "Who is my Parent?" tool to determine who should be listed as a contributor on the FAFSA.
- Family farms and small businesses must be reported as assets.
- Foster, homeless and accompanied youth (as well as applicants who can’t provide parent information on the FAFSA) will be able to complete the FAFSA with a provisional independent student determination and receive a calculated SAI.
- Students may list up to 20 colleges via the online application.
- The FAFSA will be available in more languages.
- Both the student and all parent contributors will need a Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID to electronically sign the FAFSA.
- The general types of aid available to degree-seeking students and federal student loan limits will not change assuming the student completes the FAFSA and are not in default on their previous student loans.
- The FAFSA will still be required for consideration of federal and state financial aid every year.
- Dependency status questions that determine if your parent(s) must complete the FAFSA will remain the same.
- The FAFSA will still request tax information from the prior-prior year, which means you'll report 2022 income on the 2024-2025 FAFSA. Families with significant income reductions can learn about the appeal process here. Please note that the 2024-2025 appeal form typically is available in late spring 2024.
- The questions regarding an applicant's gender, race, and ethnicity will have no effect on federal student aid eligibility and are included for statistical purposes and data collection only.
New students who plan to begin classes at SUNY New Paltz in the fall of 2024 should complete the 2024-2025 FAFSA as soon as it becomes available after December 31, 2023. Returning students should complete the FAFSA by our March 1, 2024, priority filing deadline. Newly admitted spring 2025 students should submit the 2024-2025 FAFSA by our priority deadline of October 1, 2024.
The 2024-2025 FAFSA changes are being implemented by the U.S. Department of Education and information on this webpage is subject to change as new information becomes available.