Data reported on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) creates a “snapshot” of the financial situation of the student’s family as of the date the application was completed. Occasionally, errors occur because wrong information is entered on the FAFSA. When this happens, the student must correct the incorrect information to be accurate as of the day the FAFSA was originally signed.
Applicants can make corrections to their FAFSA by:
- using the "Make FAFSA Corrections" button on FAFSA on the Web (the student may use this option regardless of the method originally used to file the FAFSA); or
- using a paper Student Aid Report (SAR).
Postsecondary schools can make corrections to a student's FAFSA by:
- submitting changes via FAA Access to Central Processing System (CPS) Online (the college may use this option regardless of the method originally used by the student to file the FAFSA). The college must have signed documentation from the student and parent (Certification statement on the SAR, a signed copy of the correction or update, or a signed verification document). Refer to the FSA Handbook (Application and Verification Guide) for details regarding signature requirements.
Students who have an FSA ID – regardless of how they applied – may correct any data already processed, with the exceptions of the Social Security number (SSN) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS)-related data. Corrections can be made via FAFSA on the Web, on the paper SAR, or by a financial aid administrator (FAA). IRS-related data transferred to the CPS during the IRS-Date Retrieval Transfer (DRT) process will be masked on FAFSA on the Web, as well as on the SAR and SAR Acknowledgement output documents. If a correction to that data is needed, only the FAA can make the corrections to IRS-related date via the FAA Access to CPS Online.
- FAFSA on the Web – Select the "Make FAFSA Corrections" button on the My FAFSA page and correct the applicable data. If dependent students change parental data, a parent must either sign electronically with their own FSA ID or print and sign a signature page.
- Paper SAR – Students who receive a paper SAR can make corrections or updates on it, sign it and return it to the FAFSA processor at the address given at the end of the SAR. One parent of a dependent student must also sign the SAR unless the only corrections are to the institution or housing codes, the address, or the telephone number.
- FAA Access to CPS Online – An FAA at the college can make corrections and updates electronically. The college must have signed documentation from the student and/or the parent for the correction(s). After the changes are processed, the school will receive an Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) and the student will receive either an e-mail with a link to the SAR information on FAFSA Corrections or a one-page SAR Acknowledgement (if the CPS does not have the student’s e-mail address). The notification sent will be in Spanish if the application or correction record is in Spanish.
Students can add or delete school codes or change their address, e-mail address or telephone number by:
- submitting the correction electronically using FAFSA Corrections;
- submitting the correction on a paper SAR; or
- contacting the Federal Student Aid Information Center (FSAIC) by phone (1-800-4-FED-AID) and providing the Data Release Number (DRN) that appears on the SAR.
For the 2023-24 academic year, the SAR lists all the Federal School Codes included on a student’s application or correction for a specific transaction. Applicants will continue to have the same options for entering, updating, and viewing up to ten college choices on FOTW and up to four choices on a paper SAR. FAAs will see only their school information (Federal School Code, name, and housing plans) in FAA Correction Entry, Student Inquiry, ISIR Compare, and the eSAR (PDF and HTML).
Students should be instructed to contact the Financial Aid Office at each college they designated on the FAFSA if there will be a significant change in the family’s income for the present year or other special circumstances that cannot be reported on the FAFSA or corrected on the SAR. No college is required to make the same special consideration changes made by a different college.
There are situations where the original application information may need to be changed: when errors need to be corrected; when dependency status, household size or the number in college must be updated; and when an aid administrator makes an adjustment based on professional judgment. Refer to the FSA Handbook (Application and Verification Guide, Chapter 4) to learn how to make these changes to application information.