FAFSA Tool Removal Creates Hurdles For Students

"The Office of Financial Aid has been monitoring the implications of the IRS’ sudden decision to discontinue its Data Retrieval Tool, a web function that simplifies the process of providing tax information," according to the Yale Daily News.

"The tool removal could pose hurdles for current and prospective Yale students applying for financial aid, as they now have to manually enter tax data rather than the process being automatic. ...

In addition to the removal of the tool, for the first time this year the FAFSA is requiring proof of nonfilers — parents or students who did not file tax returns — for three in 10 students chosen at random.

Erin Timmons, director of communications at the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, said financial aid applicants who used the Data Retrieval Tool were less likely to be selected by the Department of Education for verification, which she described as 'a sometimes cumbersome process.'

'Since the data retrieval is down at the moment, schools’ financial aid offices will likely have to conduct more verifications, which could lead to delays and backlogs for students who are waiting on financial aid awards,' Timmons said.

She noted that some states, like Texas and Indiana, have pushed back their deadlines for state financial aid so that students do not miss out on valuable state aid due to the data retrieval tool outage."

NASFAA's "Headlines" section highlights media coverage of financial aid to help members stay up to date with the latest news. Inclusion in Today's News does not imply endorsement of the material or guarantee the accuracy of information presented.

 

Publication Date: 3/28/2017

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