FAFSA frustration? We hear you!

There have been big changes to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the upcoming 2024-2025 school year.

The goal of the FAFSA Simplification Act was to streamline the process for seeking financial aid. Unfortunately, these changes have caused nation-wide delays in processing applications. We know waiting for financial aid information is frustrating. The Missouri Western Financial Aid Office is working with the Department of Education and other partners to be sure we process your financial aid application as quickly as possible.

We currently estimate Missouri Western will be able to provide Financial Aid – Aid Offers to incoming students on May 3, 2024. Returning students will receive their offers at the usual time, after final grades have been posted for the spring semester.

There’s still time to fill out your FAFSA and be considered for financial aid for the 2024-2025 school year. Missouri Western school code: 002490.

Updates

 4/12/2024

Making corrections to FAFSA

The Department of Education is in the final phase of testing 2024-25 FAFSA form corrections, so students and FAFSA form contributors may be able to see correction availability for very brief periods while the Department completes testing. During this testing phase, users attempting to make corrections may experience issues. 

Anyone who is unable to make corrections during the final testing period should return to their form early the week of April 15 when the Department expects to have corrections widely available.

Reprocessing known issues update

Approximately 30% of FAFSA forms nationwide are potentially affected by known processing or data errors. (This could include overlap with some FAFSA forms that require student corrections, as previously described.) 

Schools and state agencies will receive a subsequent Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR) transaction for each reprocessed record. In order to move forward expeditiously, schools and states can exercise their judgment to use the original ISIR—not the reprocessed record—as the basis to make financial aid offers and awards. However, if the reprocessed ISIR results in greater financial aid eligibility for students, schools and states will be required to revise their financial aid offer based upon the reprocessed ISIRs.

In the coming days, the Department of Education will provide data to assist schools in identifying the records for which the reprocessing will increase students’ aid eligibility. In addition, the Department will provide additional information about how schools and states can treat ISIRs affected by errors when making financial aid offers and disbursing funds during the 2024-25 award year.

2024–25 FAFSA Issue Alerts

FAQs

Yes! The 2024-25 FAFSA became available in December 2023. You should file the application as soon as possible to maximize your aid opportunities. Visit studentaid.gov, and use Missouri Western’s school code: 002490.

Normally, the FAFSA opens for students on October 1 each year. With the FAFSA opening later, and the Department of Education’s delays in releasing data, Missouri Western and all other colleges and universities that award Title IV funding will be delayed in getting full aid offers to students to later in the spring. Our estimated timeframe for getting awards to students is located at the top of this page. We will update that as additional information becomes available.

MWSU is working quickly to be prepared to send incoming students their Financial Aid – Aid Offers starting May 3, 2024. Returning students can expect their offers at the usual time, after final grades for the spring semester have been posted.

The Department of Education plans to make corrections broadly available during the week of April 15 at studentaid.gov. Many students need corrections such as: providing a signature for a student or parent, granting consent to access IRS tax data, adding a school to your FAFSA, or correcting questions previously answered incorrectly such as seeking Unsub loans only.

Yes! When the 2024–25 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form first became available, the U.S. Department of Education discovered an issue preventing contributors without a Social Security number (SSN) from starting or accessing the form.

The Department has made technical updates that enable students with contributors without an SSN to now successfully submit the form. Some students in this scenario, however, may still be encountering trouble submitting the form – the Department is aware of these issues and is working on resolutions.

You can find more information here.

There’s no special application process for the Access Missouri Grant. Simply fill out your FAFSA by the appropriate deadline to be considered. The State of Missouri has pushed back the final deadline for the Access Missouri Grant to June 1, 2024 (originally February 1). The priority deadline is set for April 1. Students who apply after the April 1 priority deadline will be eligible for the grant as funding is available at the state of Missouri.

The maximum Pell Grant award for 2024-25 will be $7,395

SAI
With the 2024-2025 FAFSA, the term Expected Family Contribution (EFC) will be replaced with the Student Aid Index (SAI). This is a new need analysis formula that will be used when awarding need-based grants and scholarships.

Contributor
Anyone who is asked to provide information on the FAFSA. Contributors can include the student and student’s spouse for independent students. For dependent students, the contributors can include the student, parent, and other parent.

Consent
Each contributor will need to consent to the IRS sharing their federal tax information with the FAFSA.

Fewer Questions
You’ll notice fewer questions when completing the 2024-2025 FAFSA and an easier way to transfer tax information directly from the IRS.

FAFSA Parent Could be Different
For dependent students, if your biological parents are separated or divorced, the FAFSA will require financial information from the parent who provided the most financial support to the student (previously the parent the student lived with most in the last 12 months). If that parent is remarried, you will need to include step-parent’s information on the FAFSA.

Child Support Paid Question Removed
Parent(s) and independent students will no longer report child support paid. Child support received will still be reported.

Inclusion of family farms or small businesses
When required, families will now report the net worth of their farms or businesses even if they have fewer than 100 employees.

Electronically Give Consent and Sign
All contributors should plan to sign the FAFSA and give consent electronically with their FSA ID and password. Contributors without a social security number will be able to create an FSA ID starting sometime this fall.

The student and any contributors can make sure they have their FSA ID set up and have the information needed to log in. Keep in mind that all contributors will need to sign the FAFSA electronically. You can create your FSA ID or reset your password at studentaid.gov.

  • If parents file as married filing jointly – only one parent FSA ID is required.
  • If parents are unmarried but live together or are married and filed taxes separately, both parents must have an FSA ID.
  • If student is married and filed taxes separately, student’s spouse must have an FSA ID.

Financial Aid Resources