How do I obtain the FAFSA form?

You can obtain the FAFSA form at the public library, from your high school guidance counselor or from the financial aid office of a local college. You can also call 1-800-4-FED-AID or go to

When should I send in the FAFSA?

Send in the FAFSA as soon after January 1 as possible. A lot of financial aid is disbursed on a first-come, first-served basis so you don’t want to wait too long filing this important form.

Is it OK to use estimates if I have not completed my taxes yet?

Absolutely! While it may be ideal to quickly complete your taxes, you are allowed to use estimates. A word of warning though. Overstating your estimated income by too much will certainly hurt you.

What is a SAR and how long should it take me to receive it?

The SAR is the student aid report and it is the “output” received from the Federal Student Aid Information Center when they have processed your FAFSA. If you have not heard back within 4 weeks of filing the FAFSA, call 1-800-4-FED-AID. Have your social security number and date of birth available for verification.

Should my step parent’s income be included on the FAFSA?

Regardless of any pre nuptial or other legal agreements your step parent is indeed legally responsible in the eyes of FAFSA for your financial aid. As a result, their income must be included on the FAFSA. (From the government’s perspective, the legal agreements are not binding on them since they did not make the agreement and, as a result, the federal government views the step parent as responsible for the child’s education.