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Tips to Simplifying the Financial Aid Process

Complete a new FAFSA each year:
The FAFSA year and fiscal year are not the same. The FAFSA year runs from July 1 to June 30 of each year. After Jan 1 of each year, you must complete a new FAFSA application. The Office of Financial Aid has set priority dates to ensure students are processed in a timely manner: March 15-summer term, June 15-fall term, and November 15-Spring term.

Complete FAFSA accurately
Students must have an accurate and complete FAFSA in order to avoid delays in processing. Failure to provide signatures, tax information, parental information (dependent students), household size, etc will result in a delay in awards and a possible loss of class schedule. Remember, that if a student indicates an unusual circumstance that changes their status from dependent to independent, or the number of people in their household that they support; they will be required to provide documentation.

IRS Data Retrieval Tool
The IRS Data Retrieval Tool will be available to all FASFA filers. The tool allows students and parents to automatically populate their IRS tax information into the FAFSA application. This process makes the FASFA application easier to complete and ensures that a more accurate application is completed. It takes the IRS about three weeks to process a tax return and make the completed information available to the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on the FASFA application.

SPCC’s Office of Financial Aid and Veterans Affairs strongly encourage students to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool when completing the FAFSA. Failure to do so will greatly increase the chances of a FAFSA being selected for verification and necessitate the submission of additional documents to establish financial aid eligibility

Signing your application
FAFSA and SPCC will not complete your application without the proper signatures. Make sure the FAFSA is signed electronically with the unique PIN number that was issued to you. You may also print the signature page and mail it to the address provided, however these documents may take several weeks to process. If you do not have a PIN number or have lost it, you can visit www.pin.ed.gov to apply for a new PIN or retrieve your old number. Dependent students must have both a student and parent signature on their FAFSA application in order for it to be complete. One parent must apply for a PIN number to sign the application with the student.

Enter the correct school Code
SPCC School Code: 007985
If you do not enter SPCC's code, the college will not receive your information from your FAFSA.

Watch for an E-Mail from SPCC (Check your SPAM Box)
The Office of Financial Aid at SPCC no longer corresponds with students through paper documents in the mail. All important Financial Aid information is sent to students through their e-mail accounts. When applying to the college, be sure to include an e-mail address that is working and that you check often. If you don’t currently have an e-mail address, you can visit: www.mail.yahoo.com, www.gmail.com, or many other free e-mail service providers to set up an account. Students that apply and are accepted for admission to SPCC are given access to a G-mail account and student username.  Information from the Office of Financial Aid will initially be directed to student provided e-mail accounts.  When the admission process is complete and students are placed in a program of study future electronic communication will be sent through the college provided G-mail accounts.

Understanding “Selected for Verification”
Students who are selected for verification will be required to provide the Financial Aid Office with an official IRS tax transcript. The IRS tax transcript can be accessed by going to www.irs.gov and clicking on "Get Transcript of Your Tax Records". The IRS tax transcript can also be sent directly from the IRS to the student by calling 1-800-908-9946. Orders are processed in five to seven days. Students may also order a tax transcript by completing and mailing the IRS Form 4506-T Request for Transcript of Tax Return. The form can be obtained at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f4506t.pdf. Forms are also available in the SPCC Office of Financial Aid and Veterans Affairs. Copies of an individual’s tax returns are no longer acceptable for verification purposes.

Access and view your financial aid information online
South Piedmont Community College students have access to online registration, grades, advising, financial aid, class schedules, college updates and more through the go.spcc.edu site. Click here for information about passwords.