Effective for the 2017-18 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
2017-18 FAFSA: The Free Application for Federal Student Aid became available to complete beginning Oct. 1st – a full three months earlier than previously allowed. For the first time, applicants will use prior-prior year tax information when reporting personal and family income. For the 2017-18 FAFSA, parents/students will use 2015 tax year income.
We strongly encourage you to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (IRSDRT) when completing the FAFSA. Since you and your parents have already filed your 2015 taxes, the IRSDRT imports the 2015 IRS tax return information directly into the FAFSA. Using the IRSDRT could complete some or all of the verification requirements.
Tax Filers: Since the 2017-2018 FAFSA requires 2015 tax information, if selected for Verification a 2015 IRS Tax Transcript is required.
Non-Tax Filers: An IRS Verification of Non-Filing Letter dated on or after October 1, 2016 that indicates a 2015 IRS income tax return was not filed with the IRS is required. An IRS Verification of Non-filing Letter can be obtained online using the IRS Get Tax Transcript service. If you cannot request it online, it must be obtained from the IRS using Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return, and checking box 7.
Will I have to update the FAFSA after I file 2016 taxes?
No. For your 2017–18 FAFSA, you only provide 2015 tax information. You do NOT provide 2016 tax information, even after you've filed 2016 taxes. Tax information for 2016 will be used on the 2018-2019 FAFSA.