2024-25 FAFSA Simplification

There are changes coming for the 2024-25 FAFSA! We've provided details below on the changes that new and returning students should be aware of. These changes will come into effect when the 2024-25 FAFSA opens in December 2023 (NOT October 1st, like previous years).

Update as of January 30, 2024

As a result of the FAFSA Simplification Act, both new and continuing students will see changes with the 2024-2025 FAFSA. The 2024-2025 FAFSA opened on December 30, 2023. On January 30, 2024, the U.S. DOE announced that institutions and states will begin receiving FAFSA data around mid-March, which is an additional delay to their previous commitment of end of January. You can read the full announcement here.

Known Issues/Errors

We are aware of ongoing issues and errors with the new FAFSA during their soft launch period, and we encourage students and families to contact FSA directly for assistance. You can stay updated on problems that FSA is already aware of and access related resources at the link below.

What's Changing?

The maximum number of questions is going from 108 to 36. Since some questions are conditional, some students may not even need to provide answers for all 36. 

Families with farms or small businesses (fewer than 100 employees) must report the value of their farm/business assets. 

The number of languages the application is available in is expanding beyond just English and Spanish to the 11 most common languages spoken by students learning English and/or their contributors. 

For dependent students with parents who report as divorced/separated, the parent required to provide information will no longer be whoever the student has been living with primarily for the past 12 months, but rather whichever parent is providing more financial support.

All contributors on a student's FAFSA will now be required to have an FSA ID in order to access the form and add their information. The Department of Education is currently working on a way for those without Social Security Numbers to obtain an FSA ID. 

Whereas the use of the IRS Data Retrieval Tool used to be optional, it will now be mandatory for all persons completing the FAFSA to provide tax information or to confirm their non-filing status. 

The name of the number calculated using the information on the FAFSA to determine aid eligibility is being changed to more accurately represent what the number indicates. And, while the lowest an EFC can be is 0, an SAI can be as low as -1500. 

The number in college in a household will no longer be used to calculate SAI. Whereas EFC was split evenly by the number of people in a household in college, the SAI will not be. This could affect a student's federal aid eligibility, but we will continue to use number in college to determine institutional need-based aid. 

Federal Pell Grant eligibility is expanded to more students and will link eligibility to family size and the federal poverty level.  

Students with families making less than 175% or single parents making less than 225% of the federal poverty level will receive a maximum Federal Pell Grant award. Minimum Pell Grants will be guaranteed to students from households below 275%, 325%, 350%, or 400% of the poverty level, depending on household structure. Pell awards between the maximum and minimum amounts will be determined by SAI.

How To Prepare

Haven't done a FAFSA before?

Now is the time to get your FSA ID. The Department of Education is currently working on a way for those without an SSN to obtain an FSA ID, as they will be required for all contributors. We will post more information on this as it becomes available. 

want to know what your federal aid could look like?

You can use the Federal Student Aid Estimator to get an idea of what your estimated need is and how much federal aid you may be eligible for. 


This information is all based on what's currently available to us, and it has not yet been distributed across all pages. We are in the process of updating our website, and more details will be provided as they become available.