Statement on Department of Education's FAFSA Fix for Contributors Without Social Security Numbers

Contact: Allie Arcese
Director of Communications, NASFAA
(202) 785-6954
[email protected]

WASHINGTON, D.C., FEBRUARY 20, 2024 — Today, the U.S. Department of Education announced that it will, in “the first half of March,” provide a permanent fix for FAFSA applicants who have been unable to complete and submit their forms because one or more of their required contributors do not have Social Security Numbers (SSNs). While applicants in this situation should in most cases wait for the permanent fix, the Department also announced a temporary workaround for applicants who have pressing state, institutional, or private aid deadlines to meet in order to receive non-federal financial aid.

In response to this news, NASFAA President & CEO Justin Draeger issued the following statement: 

“We appreciate the Department’s efforts to provide an interim solution for students who have been unable to complete a FAFSA because their parents do not have a Social Security Number. But this interim solution — which will be confusing and burdensome to many — must not distract us from the need to stay squarely focused on a permanent fix, which the Department has promised by the first half of March. 

This adds to the growing list of can’t-miss priorities that the Department must deliver in the month of March, a timeline students and institutions desperately need the Department to meet. Any further delays would be disastrous for both students and schools.

One of the primary goals of FAFSA simplification efforts was to expand college access and success. A permanent fix for individuals without SSNs to complete the FAFSA is critical to ensuring those goals are met.

We remain committed to working with the Department to ensure the best outcome for our students.”


The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA) is a nonprofit membership organization that represents more than 29,000 financial aid professionals at approximately 3,000 colleges, universities, and career schools across the country. NASFAA member institutions serve nine out of every 10 undergraduates in the U.S. Based in Washington, D.C., NASFAA is the only national association with a primary focus on student aid legislation, regulatory analysis, and training for financial aid administrators.

Publication Date: 2/20/2024

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