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How to Complete the FAFSA

What is the FAFSA?

The FAFSA, short for FREE Application for Federal Student Aid, is the form that all U.S. citizens or permanent residents must fill out in order to apply for federal financial aid each year.

Which fafsa should I complete?

  • Complete the 2022–2023 FAFSA for the following semesters
    • Fall 2022, Spring 2023 & Summer 2023
  • Complete the 2023–2024 FAFSA for the following semesters
    • Fall 2023, Spring 2024 & Summer 2024

What information is needed for the FAFSA?

The FAFSA will ask for the following types of information:

Information you’ll need

Information about yourself:

  • Social Security Number
  • Alien Registration Number (if you are an eligible noncitizen like a U.S. Permanent Resident)
  • Your federal income tax returns (if you filed a tax return).
    • For the 2022–2023 FAFSA, this means the tax year 2020.
    • For the 2023–2024 FAFSA, this means the tax year 2021.

Information about your parent(s):

  • Social Security Number
  • Their federal income tax returns (if they filed a tax return).
    • For the 2022–2023 FAFSA, this means the tax year 2020.
    • For the 2023–2024 FAFSA, this means the tax year 2021.

How to Apply

The FAFSA form should be filled out at studentaid.gov. Normally you can complete the form starting October 1 of the year before the one for which you are applying for aid.

Please note: Due to a major FAFSA overhaul for the 2024–25 aid year, the FAFSA will not open until sometime in December 2023 (the exact date is not yet set).

You, and at least one parent, should create an FSA ID at studentaid.gov. Your FSA ID is used as your electronic signature for the FAFSA. You do not need to wait until the FAFSA opens to apply for your FSA ID.

Check out these helpful videos put out by the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA):

Can I see the questions that will be asked prior to filling out the FAFSA?

YES. You can print a FAFSA on the web worksheet from studentaid.gov. This form can help you organize and answer questions prior to sitting down at your computer to complete the FAFSA.

My parents are not U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents; can I still apply for federal aid?

YES. If you, the student, are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident you are eligible for federal financial aid whether or not your parents are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. (Note: When prompted for your parent(s) social security number on the form, you should enter all zeros.)

I've Submitted the fafsa, now what do i do?

Review your Student Aid Report (SAR)

  • You will receive an email from noreply@FAFSA.gov with instructions on accessing your SAR. Review SAR responses and log in to the FAFSA to make corrections if needed.

Respond to requests from the college(s)

  • Complete verification if selected — colleges will instruct you on how.
    • At NMC you will receive an email to your NMC email address.
  • Complete any additional applications for aid required by the college.
  • Make sure you have applied for admission.
  • Submit any additional documents for admission and aid: final official high school transcript, etc.

Apply for other types of aid

Other Helpful Resources

There are a number of ways that you can request help completing your FAFSA form.

  • NMC Financial Aid Office – You can contact our office with questions. We are open Mondays, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Tuesday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and can be reached at (231) 995-1035.
  • FAFSA Hotline – The Department of Education can help answer questions by calling (800) 433-3243. There are also “help & hints” for each question as you complete the FAFSA.

Sign up for a FAFSA Completion Appointment

Schedule an appointment for 1-1 assistance filling out the FAFSA.

If you don't have an NMC login

If you have an NMC login

Apply for Emergency Assistance

For students experiencing hardships during their time at NMC.