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2024-2025 FAFSA Changes

Due to the passing of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Simplification Act, the FAFSA is changing significantly for the 2024-2025 aid year.

You can expect the following changes:

  • The 2024-2025 FAFSA may not be available until December 31, 2023.
    • The 2024-2025 FAFSA determines your financial aid eligibility for the Fall 2024, Spring 2025, and Summer 2025 semesters.
  • The FAFSA application process will be streamlined and easier for students to complete.
  • New terminology will be added to the FAFSA.
  • Eligibility for federal financial aid will be expanded.

We will continue to update this page as additional information becomes available. You can learn more about the specific changes, timeline, and how to prepare below.

What Should I Know?

FAFSA completion date

Instead of opening on October 1, the 2024-2025 FAFSA will not be available until December 2023. This is only temporary. After the 2024-2025 FAFSA year, the form will be available in October as usual again.

Streamlined application process

The FAFSA will have fewer questions, fewer requirements, and retrieve tax information using a direct data exchange from the IRS instead of the previous IRS Data Retrieval Tool.

New terminology and information

  • The FAFSA is introducing the new term contributor, which refers to anyone who is required to provide information on a student’s FAFSA form, including the student, the student’s spouse, a biological or adopted parent, or the parent’s spouse. Being a contributor does not imply responsibility for the student's college costs. 
    • Students will need the contributor’s name, date of birth, Social Security Number (SSN), and email address to invite them to complete the required portion of the FAFSA. 
    • Contributors will need to provide personal and financial information on their section of the FAFSA. 
  • If your parents are divorced or separated, the contributing parent(s) is the parent (and their spouse, if remarried) who provided the greater portion of your financial support during the 12 months immediately prior to filing the FAFSA. It is not automatically the parent you primarily lived with during the past 12 months.
  • All Contributors–student, student's spouse (if married), and student's parents(s) (if a dependent student)–must provide consent to have tax data transferred directly from the IRS to the FAFSA. If consent is not provided by all parties, the student will not be eligible for federal financial aid. In previous years, transferring IRS data was optional. It is now required.
  • The need analysis formula to determine financial aid, formerly known as the Expected Family Contribution (EFC), will now be referred to as the Student Aid Index (SAI). Unlike the EFC, the SAI may be a negative number.
  • Small businesses and family farms are now considered assets.
  • The number of family members in college will still be asked on the FAFSA, but it will be excluded from the federal, state, and institutional financial aid calculation.
  • The Student Aid Report (SAR) will now be referred to as the FAFSA Submission Summary. This is the summary submission document you receive after completing the FAFSA. The FAFSA Submission Summary provides your SAI and expected Federal Pell Grant offer.

Expanding Pell Grant eligibility

The adjustments to the new Student Aid Index (SAI) calculation will expand Federal Pell Grant eligibility to more students.

Prepare for the FAFSA

While the 2024-2025 FAFSA won’t be available until December, you can still prepare by doing the following:

  • Create a StudentAid.gov account on the Federal Student Aid website and assist contributors, such as your parent(s) or spouse, in creating an account.
    • A StudentAid.gov is an account and password that gives you access to the Federal Student Aid’s online system and serves as your electronic signature.
    • With the StudentAid.gov account, you can fill out the FAFSA when it’s available, sign your Master Promissory Note (MPN), apply for repayment plans, complete loan counseling, and use the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Help Tool.
  • Use the Federal Student Aid Estimator to find out how much federal student aid you may be eligible for starting with the 2024–25 award year.
    • This tool estimates the Student Aid Index (SAI) for 2024–25 award year, not the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) for 2023–24 award year.
  • Regularly check your BruinMail account for updates from the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships.