To measure a student’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC), the FAFSA asks for over a hundred pieces of information, including financial information from tax returns and income statements. Most 18 year olds do not have a deep understanding of tax forms or even of their families’ income. Prior to 2010, students had to manually enter tax information into the FAFSA, leading to error and higher levels of post-filing documentation. This slowed down the process for students, college aid offices, and the government. However, the Education Department worked together with the IRS to improve the process by developing the Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) in 2010. The DRT allowed tax-filing students and their parents to transfer the applicable tax information into the FAFSA with one click, leading to an decrease in applications with errors.
In March of 2017, the IRS and Department of Education suspended the DRT program indefinitely. Students should not fear this suspension. Aid programs like the Pell Grant remain in place, and the FAFSA is still accepting submissions! Students will need to spend a little more time locating their tax information and ensuring that their reporting is correct. Luckily, the YesU mobile app can help with accurate and complete filing.. Although it will not fill in tax data like the DRT, YesU will provide guidance on where to find the data and how to enter it into the FAFSA correctly.
Don’t chance FAFSA errors! YesU can help!. Download the app now on iTunes and Google Play. #YesUCan #FinancialAidYourWay