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Completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is required to determine a student’s eligibility for all types of federal financial aid including Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, student Stafford Loans (Subsidized & Unsubsidized) and parent PLUS Loan. To receive loans, an additional application process is required (see Loan Application Tip Sheet).

A FAFSA must be completed each year on/or after October 1st, and will take effect on July 1st of the following year to June 30th of the next year.

Examples of the income or tax information required is shown in the table below:

July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021 2020 – 2021 FAFSA starting October 1st, 2019 2018
July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022 2021 – 2022 FAFSA starting October 1st, 2020 2019
July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023 2022 – 2023 FAFSA starting October 1st, 2021 2020

Before you start make sure you have the following documents

  • Student’s Social Security Number (SSN)/Parent’s SSN (if you are considered dependent)
  • Driver’s license or ID # (if any)
  • Alien Registration/Permanent Resident Card # (if you are an eligible non-citizen only)
  • W-2 form(s) or records of money earned (if applicable) or records of untaxed income such as veteran’s benefits or worker’s comp.
  • Federal income tax return (IRS forms 1040, 1040A, 1040 EZ) or foreign tax return
  • Parents’ federal income tax return (if you are considered a dependent student)
  • Records of any business and/or investment property, business and farm records, stocks, bond, and/or other investments

Obtain a Federal Student Aid ID (FSA ID). If you have one skip to the next step.

The FSA ID serves as an electronic signature and is an identifier for all related federal student aid websites.
Go to https://studentaid.gov and click on CREATE AN FSA ID.
At least one parent if you are a dependent student will have to create a FSA ID to sign your FAFSA and complete loan documents.

Filling Out Your FAFSA Application (MI school code 015238)

  1. Go to studentaid.gov and click on Start A New FAFSA or Login (if you have completed a previous FAFSA), select enter your FSA ID or student information and click NEXT.
  2. Select the application that applies to your start date as described in the graph above. For Renewal you must provide FSA ID first.
  3. During the Income Assets portion, use the Data Retrieval Tool to import you and your parents requested federal tax information. You will be re-directed to a secured IRS pop-up, you must accept to continue
  4. To submit: Sign with your FSA ID, for dependent students your parent must enter his/her FSA ID then select SUBMIT.

Follow-Up (MI Financial Aid Office)

Please note that your FAFSA will only be reviewed after you submit an application for admission to MI. Once you submit a FAFSA, you will be contacted by a Financial Aid Administrator (FAA) with further instructions.

If your application is selected by the Department of Education for “verification”, you may be asked to complete further documents and provide a transcript of your federal taxes. You may obtain a transcript by calling 1-800-908-9946 or go to https://sa2.www4.irs.gov/irfof-tra/start.do. Once everything is complete, your FAA will e-mail an award letter detailing the type of aid you can receive.

Eligibility of any awards can only be determined by a FAA once the process is completed.

A FAFSA covers 4 quarters at MI (SUMMER, FALL, WINTER & SPRING).

If you need assistance completing the application or have any questions, please contact your Financial Aid Administrator.

Note: Please have your FSA ID and password and the required tax documents ready when you come to our office for assistance.

Filing the FAFSA is the first step in the financial aid process, but not the last. Understanding what happens next is equally or more important. Here is what you can expect.



Your FAFSA will be processed in 1-3 days by the Department of Education. An email will be sent notifying you that your FAFSA has been processed and will include a link to your Student Aid Report (SAR). This doesn’t mean that you have completed your financial aid.

What Do I Need to Do Next?


  • Once your FAFSA has been processed, the SAR will be emailed to the email address in your FAFSA.
  • Review your SAR carefully to check for and correct any errors. To make corrections go to studentaid.gov and Log In under “Returning User”. Next, click on “I’m the student” and provide your FSA ID. Click on “Make FAFSA corrections,” create a save key, and add or correct required information. Once complete you must submit your updated application.
  • If you used the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) to transfer your tax information or your parent’s tax information (dependent students only) you will not see that in your report. The required information gets added directly from the IRS and does not need to be reviewed.
  • If you are selected for the process of verification by the Department of Education, your Financial Aid Officer (FAO) will require additional documentation to process your FAFSA.

Your SAR may list your estimated eligibility for Federal Pell Grants and/or Federal Direct Student Loans. The actual numbers will be listed in the school’s financial aid notification.

What Do I Need to Do Next?

Most schools will not begin sending financial aid notifications until February. Also, you must be accepted for admission before the school will offer financial aid. For most students, there will be a gap in time from when the FAFSA is submitted until a financial aid notification is sent.

What Should I Do Once I Receive My Financial Aid Notifications?

  • If you are a dependent student who is eligible for a parent PLUS loan, you must discuss the information with your parents. The loan is credit based so your parents have to apply for credit to qualify. This loan can be big enough to cover all of your educational expenses while attending half time or full time.
  • If you are considered independent you will have to consult with you FAO to go over your possible balances.
  • Follow the instructions to complete your financial aid.

You will have the option to accept or decline the offers for grants and/or loans. If you accept the loans there are forms that must be completed to secure funding. The student loans are not based on credit.

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