Follow-Up: Time to double-check FAFSA and Profile submissions

I completed our financial aid docs in late February, posted about the process here February 29th, and promptly archived all thoughts about it in the back of my mind.

Until yesterday. I remembered to send questions to the commenter who said, very nicely, I should have completed all the paperwork earlier. In response to my questions, Jim Lundgren of Access College Foundation reminded me of the steps FAFSA requires:

  1. File using estimated tax numbers,
  2. Confirm/correct once tax returns have been completed, and
  3. Link to the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.

Jim made the point that steps two and three could be the same. However, since our accountant had electronic-filing-software-trouble the week our returns were completed, they were filed via paper. I will have to link to the IRS/DRT later (doesn’t take long to pick up the acronyms). Mod Squad Pete’s returns were filed electronically, but I’ll link to both sets at the same time.

With excellent timing, FAFSA also sent the following email to Pete last night. I’m not sure why it says the federal tax filing deadline has passed, but I welcomed the reminder:

FAFSA email

FAFSA email screen shot

Imagine my surprise when I dug through my folders and saw this note attached to the Profile iDOC folder:

CSS Profile iDOC note

For those following along this ridiculously drawn-out saga of financial aid applications (which I think might only be Mod Squad Dad by this point, and he only because he has to), here is the final today’s update:

  • Estimated Profile filed:  Nov 1.
  • Estimated FAFSA filed: Feb 1.
  • Updated Profile filed:  Feb 25
  • Taxes filed:  Feb 27.
  • Returns submitted to colleges requiring Profile:  Feb 27
  • FAFSA updated with real tax return numbers (minor change):  March 13
  • Profile iDOC submission status checked:  March 13
iDOC status screen shot

iDOC status screen shot

There. Done. For now.

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Filed under Paying for College

2 responses to “Follow-Up: Time to double-check FAFSA and Profile submissions

  1. Way too OCD for most folks. File FAFSA (and, as necessary, CSS Profile), Correct (as necessary) once tax returns are filed (can be done manually, for those who want as little interface as possible with the IRS :-). Then, forget about it. The college-bound (and their parents) have enough on their plates without unnecessarily adding to their burden. P.S. The email from FAFSA incorrectly stated that the deadline to file tax returns had passed. Obviously, it has not. [A follow-up email later corrected this — call it a Corrected FAFSA Correction.] Just goes to show that no one is perfect! :-0

    • Ha! I love this comment, College Whisperer. If there’s anything that would bring out the OCD in the calmest of folks, it’s the college and financial aid app process. Your directions reminded me of this: How to Apply to College in 5 Steps. It’s the multiple ‘as necessary’ steps that get you.

      I, too, do not wish to add to any parent’s or student’s burden, and most will find their own path. Our household path — with our first HS senior — is to go all out. Even to the extent of writing this blog to track our experience.
      Thanks so much for the comment, CW; I appreciate it.

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