- File/Renew all required financial aid documents starting OCTOBER 1 of the year prior to start of subsequent academic year.
- Keep a record of Student and Parent FSA ID’s and College Board logins. Inform our office if you change or update usernames and passwords.
- Have access to Parent’s and Student’s most recent tax returns, including
W-2’s. Email our office a PDF of Parent and Student tax returns, if possible.
- Know each college(s) financial aid DEADLINES. Get this information from EACH college website. They may differ, depending on Regular Decision (New Student), Early Action (New Student), Early Decision (New Student), Transfer Student, Continuing/Returning Student. Make a chart.
- Know each college(s) financial aid REQUIREMENTS. Get these from EACH college website. Add this information to the chart you made with deadlines and check off requirements as they are satisfied.
- Check FINANCIAL AID STATUS during the process. Student may be assigned a Status Portal with college(s) which will list satisfied/unsatisfied requirements/missing documents. Colleges WILL NOT present Student with a financial aid award until ALL requirements have been met.
- Student should forward any and all emails they receive from college financial aid offices to Parent(s). Parents should read them carefully and follow up. Colleges WILL NOT communicate with our office.
- After commitment/enrollment in a college, student will be invited to create a PERSONAL COLLEGE PORTAL. FERPA regulations prohibit anyone other than Student from accessing information on college portals. For colleges to speak to Parent about Student, Student must complete and sign a FERPA and/or HIPAA Form. These forms are available on college website.
- Student can access college portal to view Financial Aid Award By Term, and to ACCEPT or DECLINE some, or all award components. Example, Student may elect to accept subsidized portion (interest-free while the in college) of Student loan but decline unsubsidized portion (interest accrues while student is in college). If this step is not completed, college WILL NOT post awards to Student account.
- Student can access college portal to view tuition bill. If there is a charge for Medical Insurance, and Student has coverage under another plan, Student MUST complete and INSURANCE WAIVER Form to have this removed from bill.
- Student can access college portal to view Account Summary By Term to view debits (tuition, lab fees, late fees, etc.) and credits (postings of loans, grants, and scholarships) to Student’s account. This can help determine if there is a balance or an overage, and why.
- Parent PLUS (Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students) for Fall semester are usually processed from June 1st of the current year until the start of the semester. Parents needing loans can ask the earliest the date the college will accept online Federal PLUS Loan Requests, or if they have a paper PLUS request instead, specific to them.
Borrowers in REPAYMENT under an INCOME-DRIVEN/CONTINGENT PLAN must CERTIFY their income ONCE A YEAR. Call loan company if you have questions on timing and/or notify our office for an appointment.