What Are the FAFSA Deadlines for 2018-2019 and 2019-2020?

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If you’re like most students, you’re going to need some help paying for college. In fact, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, nearly 90% of full-time undergraduate students were awarded financial aid at four-year degree-granting colleges in 2015-2016. So, how can you make sure that you’re eligible for financial aid when the time comes?

 

Filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, is the first step to securing financial aid to help fund your college education. Not only does this application make you eligible for federal aid, but most states and colleges also use the FAFSA to determine your eligibility for their own grants, educational loans, and work-study programs.

 

In this post, we outline the important FAFSA deadlines you’ll need to know about in order to make sure you don’t miss out.

 

What are FAFSA Deadlines?

 

FAFSA deadlines are a little difficult to track because they vary a little bit according to what they will be used for. Furthermore, deadlines differ from state to state, and separate deadlines exist for federal grants.

 

Additionally, colleges might set their own FAFSA deadlines, so it’s important to check with each individual institution before submitting your application.

 

For federal awards, the FAFSA deadline for the 2018-2019 school year is June 30, 2019. This means that online applications must be submitted by midnight Central Time on June 30, and any corrections or updates must be submitted by midnight Central Time, September 14, 2019.

 

For the 2019-2020 school year, the FAFSA can be submitted anytime between October 1, 2018 and June 30, 2020. Again, applications must be received by midnight on June 30, and any corrections or updates must be submitted by midnight Central Time, September 12, 2020.

 

In general, it is a good idea to submit your FAFSA as early as possible. Many states and colleges request that students submit their FAFSAs as soon after October 1st as possible. Sometimes, state funds are distributed until they are depleted, meaning that if you don’t apply early, the state might run out of money before you’re able to do so.

 

If you’re planning to start college this fall, you’ll need to fill out your FAFSA as soon as possible in order to maximize your financial aid award.

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When Are FAFSA State Deadlines?

 

As we mentioned, FAFSA deadlines vary from state to state. Luckily, though, they tend to stay the same from year to year so they are not impossible to predict. If you’re interested in state deadlines for the 2018-2019 FAFSA, be aware that many have already passed. You can find more specific information for each state on the 2018-2019 FAFSA Deadlines page.

 

The following table shows the data taken directly from the FAFSA website regarding 2019–20 FAFSA Deadlines:

 

State Deadline
Alabama Check with your financial aid administrator.
Alaska Alaska Performance Scholarship: For priority consideration, submit your application by June 30, 2019. Awards are made until funds are depleted. Alaska Education Grant: As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
American Samoa Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Arizona Check with your financial aid administrator.
Arkansas Academic Challenge: June 1, 2019, by midnight CT
Workforce Grant: Check with your financial aid administrator. Higher Education Opportunity Grant: June 1, 2019, by midnight CT
California For many state financial aid programs: March 2, 2019 (date postmarked) Cal Grant also requires submission of a school-certified GPA by March 2, 2019. Applicants are encouraged to obtain proof of mailing their GPA and to retain a copy of their GPA form. For additional community college Cal Grants: Sept. 2, 2019 (date postmarked)
If you’re a noncitizen without a Social Security card or had one issued through the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, you should fill out the California Dream Act Application found at caldreamact.org. You do not need to fill out a FAFSA form to be eligible for California student financial aid. Contact the California Student Aid Commission (csac.ca.gov) or your financial aid administrator for more information. Additional forms may be required. Applicants are encouraged to keep a record of their submission by printing out their online FAFSA confirmation page or obtaining proof of mailing the FAFSA form.
Colorado Check with your financial aid administrator.
Connecticut For priority consideration, submit your application by midnight CT, Feb. 15, 2019. Additional forms may be required. Contact your financial aid administrator or your state agency.
Delaware April 15, 2019, by midnight CT
District of Columbia For priority consideration, your FAFSA form should be completed by May 1, 2019.
For DCTAG, complete the DC OneApp and submit supporting documents by May 31, 2019, to be given priority consideration.
Federated States of Micronesia Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Florida May 15, 2019 (date processed)
Georgia Check with your financial aid administrator.
Guam Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Hawaii Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Idaho Opportunity Grant: For priority consideration, submit your application by midnight CT, March 1, 2019. Additional forms may be required. Contact your financial aid administrator or your state agency.
Illinois As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
Indiana Frank O’Bannon Grant: April 15, 2019, by midnight CT
21st Century Scholarship: April 15, 2019, by midnight CT
Adult Student Grant: As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted. New applicants must submit additional forms at ScholarTrack.IN.gov.
Workforce Ready Grant: As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018.
Iowa July 1, 2019, by midnight CT. Earlier priority deadlines may exist for certain programs. Additional forms may be required.
Kansas For priority consideration, submit your application by midnight CT, April 1, 2019. Additional forms may be required. Contact your financial aid administrator or your state agency.
Kentucky As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards made until funds are depleted.
Louisiana July 1, 2020 (July 1, 2019 recommended)
Maine May 1, 2019, by midnight CT
Marshall Islands Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Maryland March 1, 2019, by midnight CT
Massachusetts For priority consideration, submit your application by midnight CT, May 1, 2019.
Michigan March 1, 2019, by midnight CT
Minnesota 30 days after term starts, by midnight CT.
Mississippi MTAG and MESG Grants: Sept. 15, 2019, by midnight CT. Additional forms may be required.
HELP Scholarship: March 31, 2019, by midnight CT. Additional forms may be required.
Missouri For priority consideration, submit your application by Feb. 1, 2019. Applications are accepted through April 1, 2019, at midnight CT.
Montana Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
N. Mariana Islands For priority consideration, submit your application by midnight CT, April 30, 2019. Additional forms may be required.
Nebraska Check with your financial aid administrator.
Nevada All other aid: Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
New Hampshire Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
New Jersey

2018–19 Tuition Aid Grant recipients: April 15, 2019, by midnight CT

All other applicants

Fall and spring terms: Sept. 15, 2019, by midnight CT

Spring term only: Feb. 15, 2020, by midnight CT

New Mexico Check with your financial aid administrator.
New York June 30, 2020, by midnight CT. Additional forms may be required.
North Carolina As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
North Dakota As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
Ohio Oct. 1, 2019, by midnight CT
Oklahoma As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
Oregon Oregon Opportunity Grant: As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
Palau Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Pennsylvania All first-time applicants enrolled in a community college, business, trade, or technical school, hospital school of nursing, designated Pennsylvania Open-Admission institution, or nontransferable two-year program: Aug. 1, 2019, by midnight CT
All other applicants: May 1, 2019, by midnight CT. Additional forms may be required.
Puerto Rico Check with your financial aid administrator.
Rhode Island Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
South Carolina Tuition Grants: June 30, 2019, by midnight CT
SC Commission on Higher Education Need-based Grants: As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
South Dakota Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Tennessee State Grant: Prior-year recipients receive award if eligible and apply by February 1, 2019. All other awards made to neediest applicants. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
Tennessee Promise: Feb. 1, 2019 (date received)
State Lottery:Fall term: Sept. 1, 2019 (date received)Spring and summer terms: Feb. 1, 2020 (date received)
Texas As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018.
Texas public colleges: For priority consideration, submit your application by Jan. 15, 2019. Additional forms may be required.
Texas private colleges: Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
U.S. Virgin Islands Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Utah Check with your financial aid administrator. Awards are made until funds are depleted. Additional forms may be required.
Vermont As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted. Additional forms may be required.
Virginia Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.
Washington As soon as possible after Oct. 1, 2018. Awards are made until funds are depleted.
West Virginia PROMISE Scholarship: March 1, 2019. New applicants must submit additional forms at cfwv.com. Contact your financial aid administrator or your state agency.
WV Higher Education Grant Program: April 15, 2019
Wisconsin Check with your financial aid administrator.
Wyoming Check with your financial aid administrator. Additional forms may be required.

Data taken from 2019–20 FAFSA Deadlines.

 

When Are Individual College FAFSA Deadlines?

 

You’ll need to research each college independently to ensure that you’re aware of their FAFSA deadlines. Be careful to read these deadlines closely–some schools list the date by which your materials must be postmarked while others list the date by which they must be received. Don’t be caught unawares.

 

What To Do After You Submit Your FAFSA

 

The FAFSA has a fairly quick turnaround. About three to five days after submitting it, you should receive your Student Aid Report, or SAR, to the email address you’ve provided. The SAR gives you a summary of the information you provided in the FAFSA and includes an estimate of what you and your family should expect to contribute for the next academic year.

 

It’s important to review your SAR to ensure that all of the information is accurate. If it’s not, the amount of aid you’re eligible for will be affected. Make any necessary corrections as soon as possible after receiving your SAR.

 

Sometime between March and April you will receive award letters from the colleges to which you’ve been accepted and have submitted your FAFSA. These award letters will break your aid down into its component grants, loans, and work-study programs. Review these letters carefully with your family to help decide which financial aid packages make the most sense for your family.

 

For more information, check out our post 5 Things To Do After You Fill Out the FAFSA. Here you’ll learn how to screen your FAFSA for typos and errors, how to correct any mistakes you find, and how to find scholarships to supplement your financial aid packages.

 

Where Can You Get More Help Meeting FAFSA Deadlines and Understanding the Financial Aid Process?

 

For most first-year college students, the financial aid application process can be a little intimidating–after all, it can determine your overall ability to pay for college. Some families might benefit from a little extra guidance through this process and the college application process in general. If this sounds like you, consider enlisting the help of CollegeVine’s Applications Guidance service. Here, you will be paired with a personal admissions specialist from a top college who can provide step-by-step guidance throughout the entire application process, from creating your college list to committing to a school.

 

For more information about the FAFSA and financial aid, check out these important CollegeVine articles:

 

FAFSA, CSS Profile, IDOC, Oh My: A Guide to Financial Aid

How to Afford College: Exploring Your Options

5 Time-Saving Tips for Completing the FAFSA

Understanding Your Financial Aid Award Letters

How Do I Take Out a Federal Direct Student Loan?

Understanding College Costs: FAQs About Financial Aid in Practice

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Kate Sundquist
Senior Blogger at CollegeVine
Short bio
Kate Koch-Sundquist is a graduate of Pomona College where she studied sociology, psychology, and writing before going on to receive an M.Ed. from Lesley University. After a few forays into living abroad and afloat (sometimes at the same time), she now makes her home north of Boston where she works as a content writer and, with her husband, raises two young sons who both inspire her and challenge her on a daily basis.