2024-2025 FAFSA Updates

The 2024-2025 FAFSA form is now live!

Here’s how you file:

  1. Create StudentAid.gov accounts – Students and their contributors will each need their own accounts. Contributors are anyone required to provide information on your FAFSA form (biological or adoptive parents, your parent’s spouse, your spouse). 
  2. Complete the Student portion of the FAFSA 
  3. Identify who needs to contribute information to your FAFSA – Use this infographic to help you figure it out or get in touch with us, we’re happy to help.
  4. Invite contributors to complete their portion of your FAFSA form – you’ll need some basic information such as: first and last name, Social Security number (if applicable), date of birth and email address. 
  5. New York State TAP (For NYS residents only) – for the 2024-2025 academic year, you will need to apply separately for New York State TAP after you file your FAFSA form. The Canisius University TAP school code is 0090. 

What you’ll need to complete the FAFSA: 

  1. StudentAid.gov accounts
  2. 2022 Federal Tax Returns 
  3. Records of Untaxed Income from 2022 – This includes child support and interest income. 
  4. Records of Your Current Assets – This includes savings and checking account balances and value of investments. 
  5. List of Schools – You can list up to 20 schools you are interested in attending. Canisius’ FAFSA code is 002681

If you do not plan to file the FAFSA, letting us know allows us to speed up the financial aid awarding process to get a financial aid package in your hands sooner. Please the link below to let us you do not plan on filing.

FAFSA Filing Intentions Form

The U.S. Department of Education has recently notified schools of new delays in the FAFSA process and that we should not expect to have access to information on FAFSA submissions until late spring. Once FAFSA data is released to us from the federal government, Canisius University committed to sharing financial aid packages as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience.

Canisius University is committed to help you and your family through the changes to this process. James Nowak, associate director of enrollment and financial aid operations, is available to answer questions about the process at @email or 716-888-2311.

Changes to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

 There are significant changes to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the 2024-2025 academic year:

The API, which allows students who have submitted a FAFSA online to electronically transfer data they provided on their application to their New York State TAP application, will not be available for the entirety of the 2024-2025 academic year.  Students will need to apply for TAP directly at https://www.tap.hesc.ny.gov/totw/

Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) is being replaced by Student Aid Index (SAI).

  • The Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) which has traditionally been used to determine financial need, will now be replaced by the Student Aid Index, or SAI.  The lowest possible EFC was 0, while the lowest possible SAI will be -1,500.

Students will now invite “Contributors” to do their part of the FAFSA separately.

  • Students will now login to the FAFSA to complete their portion, and then invite “contributors” to complete their portion separately.  Students will determine who should be a contributor to their FAFSA based their answers to a series of questions at the beginning of the application.

Goodbye IRS data retrieval; Hello Direct Data Exchange

  • Contributors will now need to authenticate Federal Tax Information (FTI) using the IRS Direct Data Exchange (DDE).  The student and all contributors must be authenticated through the IRS, even if they are non-tax filers.

Multiple household members in college benefit eliminated from needs analysis calculation**

  •  For the 23-24 FAFSA and prior, the EFC was divided by household members in college at the same time.
  •  For the 24-25 FAFSA and beyond:  multiple household members in college are no longer a factor in the needs analysis nor SAI calculation.

**Know that Canisius is committed to working closely with all families to provide as much support as possible to close any gap created by this federal policy change ** 



How long does it take for FAFSA to process?

Traditionally, the FAFSA is processed and made available to schools within 2-3 business days.  The 2024-2025 FAFSA has encountered significant delays and processing times, and the Department of Education has confirmed that student FAFSA information will not be made available to schools until late spring.

When is the FAFSA due?

The 2024-2025 FAFSA will be available until June 30, 2025.  With that said, it is critical that you complete the FAFSA as soon as possible to best position yourself to receive the most federal and institutional financial aid.

Is the FAFSA free?

Yes, the FAFSA is free to complete by logging into studentaid.gov using your FSA ID. If you are asked to pay a fee to complete the form, it’s either a scam or a company offering services to help you fill out the form for a fee.

Am I a dependent or independent student?

To qualify as an independent student, you must meet one or more of the following requirements:

•    You are at least 24 years old
•    You are a graduate student
•    You are a veteran of the U.S. armed forces
•    You have children or other dependents who receive 50% or more of their support from you
•    You are an emancipated minor or in legal guardianship
•    You are married, or separated but not divorced
•    At any point after age 13, your parents were both deceased

Which parent’s income to I provide on the FAFSA?

If you’re a dependent student, you’ll report income for both of your legal parents (biological or adopted) if they aren’t divorced or separated. It doesn’t matter if they were never married or are of the same sex.

If your parents are divorced or separated, but still live together, then you report the income from both parents. If they are divorced or separated and don’t live together, include the income from the parent who provides the majority of your support. In most cases, this is also the parent who claims you on their tax return.  Stepparent income must also be included if they are married to your legal parent.

What do I do if my parents won’t report their income?

There are a select few reasons why you may not have to report your parent or parents’ income, including:

  • One or both are incarcerated
  • You left an abusive family environment
  • You don’t know where your parents are, and you weren’t adopted
  • You are between ages 21 and 24 and you are either homeless or could become homeless
  • You are an independent student

However, not reporting parent income may mean that you won’t qualify for federal grants based on income. You’ll want to fully explain your situation in writing to your institution’s financial aid office.

Does my family make too much money to qualify for financial aid?

While income matters for need-based financial aid from the Department of Education, scholarship and grant eligibility varies by institution.  It is always recommended that you file to FAFSA to ensure that you can receive all financial aid for which you qualify.

Do I need to file the FAFSA every year?

Yes, you must renew your FAFSA each academic year.

Do I have to be a U.S. citizen to receive federal aid?

You do not have to be a U.S. citizen to complete the FAFSA.  Eligible non-citizens include U.S. nationals (American Samoa or Swains Island natives), green card holders and citizens of the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands or the Republic of Palau. Other immigrants may be able to apply as well, such as those with refugee or asylum-granted status.

Should international students fill out the FAFSA?

International students should fill out the FAFSA if they meet one of the qualifications above or if the institution advises them to do so.  

If the FAFSA is the federal form for financial aid, does it have anything to do with financial aid from my college?

While the FAFSA serves as the only application for federal student aid, it is also your application for aid from every institution that you include on it.  Always fill out the FAFSA to ensure that you are applying for all aid for which you are eligible.