Could it be that applying for financial aid for college will finally get a bit easier?
The federal Education Department recently announced that the notoriously complicated federal financial aid form known as FAFSA will shortly be available in a user-friendly mobile form.
The FAFSA (or Free Application for Federal Student Aid), which calculates how much students and their families are expected to pay for college, is the starting point for federal aid, and is used by states and schools as well.
The latest version of the FAFSA will launch in October, and will be available on a new phone app and a new mobile-friendly website. This means that anyone with a smartphone should be able to complete the form with relative ease. While the FAFSA has been available online for many years, families generally needed a desktop computer to complete it, because the website didn’t work well on mobile devices.
The updated app is scheduled to be released on October 1, when the new FAFSA for the 2019-20 school year is made available. It’s anticipated that the app will allow the automatic transfer of financial information from the IRS’s online Data Retrieval Tool, which makes it much easier to accurately enter the required financial details.
The myStudentAid app can be downloaded from both Apple’s App Store and from Google Play for Android devices.
You’ll need a federal student aid ID to use the app – as you do now to use the website – and it’s important to note that students and parents must establish their own separate IDs.
The Education Department offers tips for the next FAFSA application period on its website, https://fafsa.ed.gov.
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