The IRS Data Retrieval Tool that parents and students use to transfer tax information directly from the IRS to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is not currently working. Officials at the IRS and the Department of Education expect the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to be nonfunctional for “several weeks” as they work to resolve technical issues with their systems.
When completing the 2016-2017 FAFSA or the 2017-2018 FAFSA, applicants should manually enter the requested information from their 2015 federal tax returns. If selected for verification, students and the parents of dependent students may request a copy of their 2015 tax return transcript at www.irs.gov and then upload it to the School Servicing Center at www.sscwp.org when they complete the verification interview. Applicants who do not have a copy of their 2015 federal tax return may also request a copy of their 2015 tax return transcript in order to manually enter their tax data on the FAFSA when they apply. Tax return transcripts may be downloaded from the IRS website once the tax filer’s identity is confirmed or mailed to the tax filer within 5-10 days.
Instructions for Getting a 2015 Tax Return Transcript
Congratulations! All your hard work and late night studying is about to pay off. Graduation is just around the corner. Understandably, it might feel overwhelming, but with a bit of planning, making the transition from school to full-time work can be smooth.
The following is a checklist with some important tasks to consider:
- Take the last few months seriously. Yes, you may be in the homestretch but be sure to study hard. This is not the time to coast.
- Have you applied to graduate? If not, review NOVA’s graduation website, http://www.nvcc.edu/graduation/.
- Pay a visit to NOVA’s Career Services Office. They can assist you to develop your cover letter, resume, and portfolio as well as teach you how to prepare for an interview and begin your job search.
- Develop a list of references and letters of recommendation. As this may be your first job, ask your instructors for permission to use them as a reference or for those letters of recommendation. Potential employers will ask for this information if you are a serious candidate for the job.
- Figure out where you are going to live after college. You need to think about if you are going to move back home with your parents on a short-term basis or if you’re going to live on your own.
- What about transportation? If you currently have a car, you’re probably good to go. If not, you’ll need to carefully consider affordable options including public transportation, at least for the short term.
- Will you be going to grad school? Ask yourself: what school will you be attending, how much will it cost and how will you pay for it?
- Check your consumer credit report. No matter what your plans for living and getting around, you’ll want to check your consumer credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com for errors and to see where your credit score stands.
- Most importantly, start planning to repay your student loans. Six months after graduation, you’ll be expected to begin repayment on your federal student loans. For other loans, check your promissory notes and contact your lender(s). Be sure to inventory your student loans. For federal loans, visit www.studentloans.gov. There you will find a complete list of how much you borrowed, your interest rates and your loan servicer information. Contact your servicer(s) to update your contact information and to discuss repayment options.
Source: ECMC Fab Gab Outreach and Financial Literacy Newsletter, Winter 2017
Were you one of the 16 randomly selected students who won $100 grants or bookstore gift cards by participating in NOVA’s CashContest during fall 2016? If not, consider entering the CashContest during the spring semester for a chance to win $100 while also learning more about managing your finances. Complete contest rules are posted on NOVA’s Financial Literacy blog at https://blogs.nvcc.edu/financial-literacy/. The next module, “Credit and Protecting Your Money” must be completed by March 5, 2017 to be entered in the contest.
Financial Aid Newsletter – Greenback_DEC-16_FINAL
Check out the latest issue of The Financial Aid Greenback, our quarterly Financial Aid newsletter. This issue: Manage your educational borrowing, FAFSA Filing Update, Scholarship information, Essay Tips, and more. This newsletter is designed to help students and staff members stay up-to-date on the latest and greatest in the world of financial aid.
Posted in Bookstore Purchases, FAFSA Process, Financial Aid Course Audit (FACA), General Information, Greenback, Satisfactory Academic Progress, Scholarships, Social Media
Tagged borrowing, FACA, FAFSA, SAP, Scholarships
We wanted to let you know about a FREE, interactive webinar NOVA is holding this Friday at Noon. The webinar is all about paying for college and includes information on: financial aid and scholarships, responsible borrowing, work study positions, and external employment, tax benefits, financial coaching, and NOVA’s Cash Contest. You do not have to be a current NOVA student to participate. Simply RSVP at https://goo.gl/bEaCQj. Further details regarding accessing the webinar will be sent out the day before.
Check out the ECMC “Fab Gab” Financial Literacy Newsletter available here for tips on:
Stretching Your Refund Across the Semester
10 Ways to Reduce Your Grocery Bill
Student Loan Basics
The second round of NOVA’s CashContest is currently underway! During the first round, 115 students successfully completed Inceptia’s “Foundations of Money” course and eight of those students were randomly selected to receive $100 grants or bookstore gift cards.
To participate in the second round of the CashContest, students may sign up for Financial Avenue at https://fa.financialavenue.org/sign-up/, enter NOVA’s access code (FinLit), and complete the “FAFSA” course by 11:59pm on December 18, 2016. The course takes about 45 minutes to complete and shows students how to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). It also answers many of the questions that students often have about applying for federal aid. Students who successfully complete the course by the deadline will gain a better understanding of the financial aid process and they’ll be entered in the $100 drawings for this round. Please participate!
Students are also encouraged to submit the 2016-2017 FAFSA and the 2017-2018 FAFSA at www.fafsa.gov if they haven’t already done so. To promote early FAFSA completion, the 2017-2018 FAFSA actually became available on October 1, 2016. Beginning with the 2017-2018 award year, the FAFSA will use tax data from the “prior-prior year” (PPY) instead of the most recent tax year to facilitate the use of the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA and to enable students to receive accurate award information earlier in the year. Due to this transition to using PPY information, 2015 tax data will be used when completing both the 2016-2017 FAFSA and the 2017-2018 FAFSA. More information about applying for financial aid at NOVA is available at www.nvcc.edu/financialaid/apply/index.html.
During the 2016-2017 academic year, NOVA students who successfully complete Financial Avenue courses will be entered in drawings for forty $100 grants and bookstore gift cards that can be used for educational costs at NOVA. The Financial Aid Office will randomly select winners after each completion period has ended. Each course typically takes about 45 minutes to complete and covers topics such as budgeting, saving, credit cards, loans, financial aid, and employee benefits. Please consider entering the contest! It’s a great opportunity to potentially win money towards your educational expenses while building real-life personal financial management skills!
The Official CashContest rules are posted on NOVA’s Financial Literacy Blog. Students may sign up for Financial Avenue at https://fa.financialavenue.org/sign-up/ and enter NOVA’s access code, “FinLit” to participate in the contest. The deadline for completing the first course, “Foundations of Money” is 11:59pm on October 18, 2016.
In addition to the Financial Avenue courses, a variety of other resources are available on the Financial Literacy Blog.
The Department of Education implemented changes to make the FAFSA application process easier and more efficient, thus allowing for earlier availability of important financial eligibility information.
TWO IMPORTANT CHANGES GO INTO EFFECT WITH THE 2017-2018 FAFSA:
- Submit a FAFSA earlier: Students will be able to file a 2017-18 FAFSA beginning October 1, 2016 (rather than beginning on January 1, 2017). The earlier filing date will be a permanent change, thus allowing students to complete and submit a FAFSA as early as October 1 every year.
- Use earlier income information: Beginning with the 2017-18 FAFSA, students will report income information from an earlier tax year. For example, on the 2017-18 FAFSA, students (and parents, as appropriate) will report their 2015 income information (rather than their 2016 income information).
The following table provides a summary of key dates as we transition to using the early FAFSA submission timeframe and earlier tax information.
For more information on Early FAFSA filing, visit: nvcc.edu/financialaid