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When Is the FAFSA Deadline for 2018? Federal and State

Posted by Justin Berkman | Aug 9, 2017 5:30:00 PM

Financial Aid

 

To be considered for federal financial aid, you must complete and submit a FAFSA, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Most states, colleges, and universities also use the FAFSA to award other types of institutional financial aid, including state- and college-sponsored financial aid such as grants, educational loans, and work-study programs.

If you don’t get your FAFSA submitted by the deadline, you might be missing out on free money. Don’t do that. Make sure you know all the applicable federal, state, and college deadlines and follow them. Get that money.

In this article, I discuss when you should submit the FAFSA and how to ensure you don't miss any deadlines. In addition, I explain the financial aid process after you submit your FAFSA.

 

When Are Federal FAFSA Deadlines?

You can file a FAFSA for the 2017-2018 school year between October 1, 2016, and June 30, 2018. Online applications must be submitted by midnight Central Time on June 30, 2018. Any corrections or updates must be submitted by midnight Central Time on September 15, 2018.

For the 2018-2019 school year, you can file anytime from October 1, 2017 to June 30, 2019. Once again, applications must be submitted by midnight Central Time on the final date.

If you're applying to college this year, you should submit your FAFSA in late 2017 or early 2018 to meet state and college deadlines and to maximize the amount of aid you can receive.

 

When Are State FAFSA Deadlines?

FAFSA deadlines vary for each state to be eligible for state-sponsored financial aid. Generally, state deadlines have remained the same from year to year. A number of states ask you to submit your FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1. Then, financial aid is awarded until the state funds are depleted. Therefore, it's essential to submit your FAFSA early if you live in one of these states.

Below, I have listed all of the state deadlines for the FAFSA for the 2017-2018 school year. The dates are for 2017, unless otherwise noted. As I previously mentioned, these deadlines tend to stay the same each year. This information was taken directly from the FAFSA website.

Alabama

Check with your financial aid administrator.

Alaska

Alaska Performance Scholarship — June 30. For priority consideration, submit application by date specified. Awards made until funds are depleted.

Alaska Education Grant — As early as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

American Samoa

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Arizona

Check with your financial aid administrator.

Arkansas

Arkansas Challenge — June 1 by midnight Central Time.

Workforce Grant — Check with your financial aid administrator.

Higher Education Opportunity Grant - June 1 by midnight Central Time.

California

March 2 (postmarked by) for many state financial aid programs.

Cal Grant also requires submission of a school certified GPA by March 2. Applicants are encouraged to obtain proof of mailing their GPA and to retain a copy of their GPA form.

For additional community college Cal Grants — September 2 (postmarked).

Colorado

Check with your financial aid administrator.

Connecticut

February 15 by midnight Central Time.

For priority consideration, submit application by date specified. Additional forms may be required. Contact your financial aid administrator or your state agency.

Delaware

April 15 by midnight Central Time.

District of Columbia

May 1

For DCTAG, complete the DC OneApp and submit supporting documents by May 31.

Federated States of Micronesia

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Florida

May 15 (date processed)

Georgia

Check with your financial aid administrator.

Guam

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Hawaii

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Idaho

Opportunity Grant — March 1 by midnight Central Time.

For priority consideration, submit application by date specified. Additional forms may be required. Contact your financial aid administrator or state agency.

Illinois

As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

Indiana

March 10 by midnight Central Time.

Iowa

July 1 by midnight Central Time.

Earlier priority deadlines may exist for certain programs. Additional forms may be required.

Kansas

April 1 by midnight Central Time. For priority consideration, submit application by date specified.

Additional forms may be required. Contact your financial aid administrator or your state agency.

Kentucky

As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards are made until funds are depleted.

Louisiana

July 1, 2018 (July 1, 2017, recommended)

Maine

May 1 by midnight Central Time.

Marshall Islands

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Maryland

March 1 by midnight Central Time.

Massachusetts

May 1 by midnight Central Time. For priority consideration, submit application by date specified.

Michigan

March 1 by midnight Central Time.

Minnesota

30 days after term starts by midnight Central Time.

Mississippi

MTAG and MESG Grants — September 15 by midnight Central Time

HELP Scholarship — March 31 by midnight Central Time

Missouri

For priority consideration, submit by February 1. 

Applications received through April 1 by midnight Central Time. Awards made until funds are depleted.

Montana

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

N. Mariana Islands

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Nebraska

Check with your financial aid administrator.

Nevada

Silver State Opportunity Grant — As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

All other aid — Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

New Hampshire

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

New Jersey

2016-2017 Tuition Aid Grant recipients -— April 15 by midnight Central Time.

All other applicants — September 15 by midnight, Central Time for fall and spring terms; February 15, 2018, by midnight Central Time for spring term only.

New Mexico

Check with your financial aid administrator.

New York

June 30, 2018, by midnight Central Time.

Additional forms may be required.

North Carolina

As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

North Dakota

As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

Ohio

October 1 by midnight Central Time.

Oklahoma

As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

Oregon

OSAC Private Scholarships — March 1. Additional forms may be required.

Oregon Promise Grant — Fall term, April 1 by midnight Central Time; other terms, contact state agency. Additional forms may be required. Awards made until funds are depleted.

Oregon Opportunity Grant — As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

Palau

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Pennsylvania

All first-time applicants enrolled in a community college; business/trade/technical school; hospital school of nursing; designated Pennsylvania Open-Admission institution; or non-transferable two-year program — August 1 by midnight Central Time.

All other applicants — May 1 by midnight Central Time. Additional forms may be required

Puerto Rico

Check with your financial aid administrator.

Rhode Island

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

South Carolina

Tuition Grants — June 30 by midnight Central Time.

SC Commission on Higher Education Need-based Grants — As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

South Dakota

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional form may be required.

Tennessee

State Grant — January 17. Eligible prior-year recipients receive priority, and all other awards made to neediest applicants until funds are depleted.

Tennessee Promise — January 17

State Lottery — Fall term, September 1 by midnight Central Time; spring & summer terms, February 1, 2018 by midnight Central Time.

Texas

As soon as possible after October 1, 2016.

Texas public colleges — March 15. For priority consideration, submit application by date specified.

Texas private colleges — Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

US Virgin Islands

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Utah

Check with your financial aid administrator.

Vermont

As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted. Additional forms may be required.

Virginia

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Washington

As soon as possible after October 1, 2016. Awards made until funds are depleted.

West Virginia

PROMISE Scholarship — March 1. New applicants must submit additional information at www.cfwv.com . Contact your financial aid administrator or state agency.

WV Higher Education Grant Program — April 15.

Wisconsin

Check with your financial aid administrator.

Wyoming

Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

 

 

When Are College FAFSA Deadlines?

Most institutional deadlines for the FAFSA are between January and March for the following academic year. Some schools have deadlines as early as the second week in January.

Make sure you check with the colleges you're interested in attending about their deadlines. You should also ask whether the deadline is for when the college must receive the FAFSA by, or for when the FAFSA must be processed by.

 

Timeline After Submitting the FAFSA

Generally, three days after you submit your FAFSA, you'll receive your SAR, or Student Aid Report, electronically. If you don't provide an email address, you'll receive your SAR by mail in seven to 10 days.

The SAR summarizes your FAFSA information and provides a dollar amount for your expected family contribution for the next academic year. Your expected family contribution is used by colleges to calculate the amount of aid you're eligible to receive.

On your SAR, make sure all the information is correct. If necessary, submit any corrections. Also, you may need to submit additional forms or documentation to financial aid offices if colleges ask you to do so. Some colleges require forms in addition to the FAFSA for financial aid.

Typically, between March and April, you'll receive financial aid award letters from the colleges that accepted you. Normally, you'll get them with your acceptance letters or a couple of weeks after.

In your financial aid award letters, you'll find out how much financial aid you'll receive and what your aid will consist of between loans, grants, and work-study. From your award letters, you can determine your out-of-pocket expenses for each school. Generally, you have to commit to the college you're going to attend by May 1.

Between May and September, you can apply for supplemental aid to cover your cost of education, if needed. Your parents may borrow up to your cost of education minus your financial aid through the Federal PLUS loan. You may borrow up to your cost of education minus your financial aid through many private student loan programs.

Also, between May and September, if you receive a Federal Stafford Loan, you should complete the Master Promissory Note, which acts as a contract between you and your lender, saying that you agree to the terms of the loan and will repay it. Your school may provide this form to you or tell you where to complete it online.

 

Tips to Help You Meet FAFSA Deadlines

It is imperative that you submit your FAFSA by the appropriate deadline. If you don't, you can possibly lose out on tens of thousands of dollars to help pay for your education. To be safe, I recommend submitting your FAFSA within the first couple of weeks of October. This will ensure you don't miss any deadlines and will be eligible for all federal, state, and college financial aid.

However, I know some of you like to procrastinate, so here are some tips to help you stay on track:

  • Start a financial aid folder to keep all your financial aid documents organized. Doing so will save you time and help you out, especially considering the fact you must file a FAFSA every year you apply for financial aid.
  • Make a note of the earliest deadline (state, federal, or college) you need to know on a calendar. Set a notification on your phone a week or two before the earliest deadline, too.
  • In September, start looking at the FAFSA with your parents and get together any documentation you may need.
  • Encourage your parents to prepare their income tax returns as soon as possible after January 1 since you may need their returns for financial aid purposes. Regardless of whether or not your parents plan on paying for your college education, most students will be considered dependents for FAFSA purposes.
  • If you have a good counselor at your high school, try to meet with her regularly. Many counselors excel at making sure their students submit all applications and forms in time.

 

This guy might be able to help you get your FAFSA submitted on time.

 

What's Next?

You'll understand the importance of the FAFSA and financial aid by reading more about how much college costs.

For more financial tips, check out our articles on how to get a student loan and the best jobs for teens.

 

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Justin Berkman
About the Author

Justin has extensive experience teaching SAT prep and guiding high school students through the college admissions and selection process. He is firmly committed to improving equity in education and helping students to reach their educational goals. Justin received an athletic scholarship for gymnastics at Stanford University and graduated with a BA in American Studies.



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