Families filing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA in 2016 will need to initially file the FAFSA using their 2014 federal tax return and then make corrections as soon as they have filed their 2015 federal tax return.
Families will be allowed to use the prior year tax return without correcting anything beginning with the January of 2017 FAFSA. January 2017 FAFSA filers will get to use their 2015 federal tax return data without making any corrections from their 2016 federal return.
This change will mean that everyone can easily meet the priority deadline for financial aid at their college and will reduce confusion for families. Early filing on the part of families will also likely mean earlier processing and notification of awards for schools. This is a win-win for schools and for families.