Originally Posted by chockisses
The deadline for returning students to file FAFSA and CSS Profile is March 2. Will we be okay as long as we meet this deadline?
The FAFSA and CSS/Profile should both be submitted on or before the March 2nd deadline for returning students. USC will calculate need and meet 100% of that need for on-time applicants, regardless of the specific date the applications were submitted as long as they were on-time (on or before March 2nd).
If everything on your CSS/Profile and FAFSA is exactly the same (and it never is
) your student's Stafford loan will increase by $1,000 sophomore year, and they may be offered more in work/study than in their freshman year.
Tax returns are due in May for returning students. Packages are presented in mid-to-late-June.
My personal recommendation for submitting the FAFSA and CSS/Profile for returning students is to time it carefully for after you have paid bills for the month, made IRA contributions, and completed any planned large purchases so that bank balances are as low as is honestly
possible. It simplifies things if you can get taxes done early and do your final submission in your first go-round rather than having to remember to make corrections later. I also recommend starting the FAFSA and CSS/Profile well in advance of the March 2nd deadline in case you find you do not have all the information you need and require more time to complete it.
Note to California students receiving CalGrant: It is essential that the FAFSA is submitted on or before March 2nd. The California Student Aid Commission is inflexible with that deadline. USC will not replace CalGrant for students who would have been eligible but did not receive the grant because they missed the March 2nd deadline.