To qualify for student aid in the United States, you must complete a form called the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).
Like NGTC, most colleges make filling out this form a requirement of their admissions process, so it is to your benefit to begin filling it out as soon as possible. Starting early will allow you to take your time and avoid any errors that may delay your financial package. The following section will give you the information necessary to work your way through it.
Filling Out the Form
The process of filling out the FAFSA can seem overwhelming. There are lots of questions to answer, but if you begin by assembling the following information for both yourself and your parents (if you are dependent), it will be much easier:
- NGTC’s school code: 005619
- The previous year’s Federal Income Tax Returns and W2’s
- The information you provide must be for both legal parents, regardless of marital status or gender. A single-sex couple that has not married does not have to share both parents’ financial data unless the partner has legally adopted you.
- If your parents are divorced and not living together, you are only required to submit financial information for the parent who claims you as a dependent. However, if they are divorced and still living together, you must submit information for both.
- Records of untaxed benefits received
- Child support paid or received
- Current bank statements
- Records of savings or other investments, stocks, bonds, mutual funds
- Your PIN number (also your parent’s PIN, if you are dependent)
- Go to the Federal Student Aid PIN Web site at www.pin.ed.gov.
- If you never received a PIN, choose Apply For A PIN.
IRS Retrieval Tool
NOTE: The NGTC Financial Aid Office recommends that all parents and students use the IRS Retrieval Tool when filling out the FAFSA. The Tool saves you time because it prefills the answers to some questions by transferring data from your federal income tax returns and also reduce the chances of being selected for verification. Or, if you are selected for verification, will significantly reduce the processing time of your application.
(Please note that you must have filed your tax returns 1-2 weeks prior to using the Tool if the return was filed electronically, and 6-8 weeks prior if a paper return was filed.)
The Retrieval Tool is found in the online FAFSA form. You will be asked a few screening questions, and if you are considered eligible, you will be temporarily transferred to the IRS web site, where you will be asked a few additional questions to authenticate yourself (i.e., prove that you are who you say you are).
NOTE: The Financial Aid Staff is available to assist you in completing or reviewing your application. However, you must provide the information (tax records, social security information, etc.) used in the completion of the application for them to do so.
Click here to download the NGTC instruction sheet for filling out the form as well as additional resources.
Remember, filling out and submitting this form is free. You should never pay a fee. For information on how to avoid financial aid and scholarship scams, visit the Federal Trade Commission online at http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0082-scholarship-and-financial-aid-scams/