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Paper FAFSA

techmom99techmom99 Registered User Posts: 3,282 Senior Member
After trying for 3 hours to renew S17's FAFSA online, I gave up and printed out a paper copy. I filled it out and signed S17's name, as well as mine. He is 8 hours away and won't be home before Thanksgiving and I won't send it in the mail to him because my income and assets are not his business. I have his power of attorney although I didn't indicate this on the form. Do you think this is a problem? Can I just mail in the paper FAFSA (which was actually easier to complete than the online form) or should I call the FAFSA people and try to get them to understand that the reason my username is already taken is because it's MY username?

Thank you. I know we are not getting financial aid and he doesn't have to take loans but we might qualify for Excelsior or I would just skip filing it.

Replies to: Paper FAFSA

  • thumper1thumper1 Registered User Posts: 74,372 Senior Member
    edited October 2018
    I hate to say it...but your son needs to sign this form, not you. It is HIS form.

    When renewing a FAFSA, the student is supposed to log on with their FSA ID. Did you do that? If you tried using your parent one, that could be why you couldn’t get into the form.

    Is your POA for everything? Every single thing?

    Just clarifying...are you asking us to tell you it’s OK for you to forge your son’s name on a document? If so...it’s not.

    If you have POA, you sign YOUR name as POA, not his.
  • sunnyschoolsunnyschool Registered User Posts: 1,201 Senior Member
    I'd be more patient and talk to their helpline about re-setting the id and filing online.
  • LeastComplicatedLeastComplicated Registered User Posts: 994 Member
    I made some errors on the FAFSA two years ago, and I called the FAFSA help desk and they were actually very helpful.

    If you can get through to a real person this early, you might give that a shot as they might be able to help you with your username and you can just sign off on it yourself.
  • techmom99techmom99 Registered User Posts: 3,282 Senior Member
    Thanks to all. You raise some interesting points. I do believe that my POA is sufficient as H, a trusts and estates attorney, drafted it to include the right to execute financial aid documents. However, I will print out a new form and send it to my son for his signature and then file the FAFSA when he sends it back. It took me less than 15 minutes to do the paper forms while the online always took a minimum of an hour.

    I called the FAFSA hotline and was on hold for over an hour. It just doesn't pay. I can wait a few more days to get the SAR.
  • sunnyschoolsunnyschool Registered User Posts: 1,201 Senior Member
    The issue is not how long it takes FOR YOU - the issue is how the paper version is handled on their end.
    WIth electronic, the file is then electronically sent to the colleges on a timely basis.
    Who knows how long the paper version takes to get input and sent to colleges.
    Also, IMO, the POA sets your acct up to be flagged since they may need to validate the POA.
    If you're a "techmom" then think about this technologically...and do what will get your FAFSA processed efficiently.
  • techmom99techmom99 Registered User Posts: 3,282 Senior Member
    @sunnyschool -

    I am a tech mom because my S17 is a theater tech lighting student, not because I am tech savvy. I can barely change my own password when it expires on my work computer.

    S17 is already at his chosen school so it is the only one that has to review his FAFSA. The paper form says that I will get my SAR by email within 3 -5 days after they get the form and that it will then be sent to the college. I have decided to do away with the POA issue by mailing a blank to my son with a SASE for him to send it back to me. That should keep it from being pulled.
  • kelsmomkelsmom Registered User Posts: 15,318 Senior Member
    Your POA does not give you the right to sign your child's FAFSA. You "can" do it, of course, but you do not have the legal right to do it.

    I strongly encourage people to do the FAFSA online. It takes a really long time for a paper FAFSA to process, and you will find it very difficult if you want/need to make any changes later.
  • hepler0112hepler0112 Registered User Posts: 9 New Member
    Can’t you just use the IRS Tool? I read he won’t be able to see some of your informations this way (it will just tell him “IRS tool” when he check the financial part)
  • mommdcmommdc Registered User Posts: 10,958 Senior Member
    Your son can sign into the FAFSA, then he can create a save key that he can share with you, you can fill out financial info and sign your parent signature and then he can sign and submit.

    If you cannot get your FSA ID to work, you could try calling FAFSA helpline or send in a signature form.
  • mommdcmommdc Registered User Posts: 10,958 Senior Member
    If you send in a paper FAFSA, plan to request a tax transcript for income verification purposes.

    I still think it's easier to do a FAFSA online and use DRT to import tax information.
  • mommdcmommdc Registered User Posts: 10,958 Senior Member
    Info about using save key when not able to work on FAFSA together

    https://fafsa.ed.gov/help/FSAIDfaq16.htm
  • mommdcmommdc Registered User Posts: 10,958 Senior Member
    Oh and when you follow the instructions on using the save key, your son will do a "renewal FAFSA", not a "new FAFSA"
  • techmom99techmom99 Registered User Posts: 3,282 Senior Member
    Thanks but I already mailed the form to him. We'll go with the paper this year and see what happens. It's just October 6, I should hopefully be able to mail it in the signed by my son FAFSA within a week or so. If I had waited till later on in the process, I might have had no choice but to battle the online version.

    I had terrible problems with the DRT last year and wound up having to enter all of my info manually. I was doing that this year online as I was not interested in dealing with the DRT again and had already opted against it before I got locked out or whatever it is that happened with my username being already in use.

    If I have to request a tax transcript, I will. We were selected for verification one year with my D (even with online filing) and we had the IRS send the tax documents directly to wherever they were supposed to go. My accountant took care of it for me and D wound up getting a merit scholarship.

    This is the first time ever in ten years of doing this that I am preparing FAFSA without my child being physically with me. Last year, I waited till my son was home for Thanksgiving but this year, because of the possibility of Excelsior, I didn't want to wait that long to get the paperwork in.

    I only have one more year to file FAFSA so I will probably do paper again next year unless the delay is horrific.
  • techmom99techmom99 Registered User Posts: 3,282 Senior Member
    edited November 2018
    Update:

    I did the paper FAFSA, mailed it to my son for signature and he sent it back. I then snail mailed it to the government. The other day, I got the email that it was processed successfully. Fortunately, S17 was home for the break so he was able to check. Hardly worth the effort with an EFC over 50K.
  • LarshansLarshans Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
    Did your S17 finally get the FAFSA submitted and accepted?
This discussion has been closed.