FinAid – Ever changing and ALWAYS challenging.
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Rob Wright, firstname.lastname@example.org
Pam Notemyer Rogers, email@example.com
Please note that deadlines and event dates noted in all of our newsletters are always subject to change as determined by the Department of Education.
Important Note: FA Solutions‘ Fed-Updates Newsletter updates are excerpts from original announcements posted on the IFAP website so please review the entire update by clicking the link included with each posting. We’re not able to include all Federal updates and deadlines, but you will find additional information on the IFAP website.
Loan Servicing Information – Temporary Closures of Federal Loan Servicing Centers Due to Hazardous Weather Conditions: If precautions must be taken to ensure personal and public safety during a hazardous weather event, an affected servicer may need to close a center early or for a full day. If a servicing center must close due to hazardous weather conditions, the affected federal loan servicer will use established communication practices to inform borrower and school customers of the temporary closure. For additional information, including how the servicer will communicate the temporary closure, please review the January 28, 2019 electronic announcement.
2019-2020 College Financing Plan (Shopping Sheet): In July 2012, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) released the Financial Aid Shopping Sheet (now the College Financing Plan) format and asked institutions to voluntarily commit to supplying financial aid information to students in a way that could be better understood and compared. Over time some concerns were expressed about elements of the template that could be improved to make it more user friendly to institutions and students. In response ED has developed a revised Shopping Sheet template and is being introduced as part of a beta testing protocol. For those institutions which choose to test the new format this year, your comments and suggestions must be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than April 1, 2019. Please review the January 16, 2019 electronic announcement for additional information.
2019-2020 Federal Pell Grant Payment and Disbursement Schedules: PDF and Excel versions of the Payment and Disbursement Schedules for determining Federal Pell Grant awards for the 2019-2020 award year (July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2020) for full-time, three-quarter-time, half-time, and less-than-half-time students are now available. All 2019-2020 Federal Pell Grant awards must be based on the schedules. With the release of the 2019-2020 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on October 1, 2018, the Department is providing the Pell Grant Payment and Disbursement Schedules so that institutions may inform students and their families of their potential eligibility for a Federal Pell Grant. Please review the January 23, 2019 Dear Colleague Letter for additional information.
Application for Participation in the Work Colleges Program: Federal Student Aid has issued information about the application process for schools interested in participating in the Work Colleges Program under the Federal Work-Study (FWS) Program for the 2019–20 Award Year. To participate in this program the school must comply with all provisions of Section 448 of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), and the applicable program regulations included in Subpart C of 34 CFR Part 675. Any school interested in participating in the Work Colleges Program for the 2019–20 Award Year (including schools that are currently participating in the 2018–19 Award Year) must apply no later than March 4, 2019. This deadline applies to both the electronic submission and the required signed paper copy (signed by the school’s Chief Executive Officer /CEO). Note: The Work Colleges Application is not an application to participate in the FWS Program. Please review the January 30, 2019 electronic announcement for additional information.
Options for Submitting Compliance Audits and Financial Statements for Foreign Schools: As mentioned in a previous update, foreign schools now have two options to submit their Compliance Audit Reports and Audited Financial Statements in either an electronic or hard copy format. For instructions on how to make these submissions, please review the January 14, 2019 electronic announcement.
Login Requirement for CPS Web Applications Demonstration System Removed as of January 20, 2019: On January 20, 2019, Federal Student Aid (FSA) removed the login requirement for access to the Central Processing System (CPS) Web Applications Demonstration (Web Demo) System, located at https://fafsademo.test.ed.gov. A user ID and password is no longer be required. The Web Demo system, which is preloaded with test data, can be used to demonstrate electronic applications to parents and students or as an aid in training financial aid administrators to assist applicants. Financial aid administrators can also use the website to become familiar with FAA Access to CPS Online functionality and train their staff to use the system. For additional information, please review the January 17, 2019 electronic announcement for additional information.
Revision of the Federal Student Loan Discharge Applications: The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved revised versions of the federal student loan discharge applications under OMB Control Number 1845-0058. The revised versions have an expiration date of September 30, 2020. The forms are for use by borrowers who are seeking discharge based on closed school, false certification, or unpaid refunds of loans made under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program, the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program, and the Federal Perkins Loan (Perkins Loan) Program. For additional information, please review the January 29, 2019 electronic announcement.
Reporting Student Loan Interest Payments for 2018: As tax time approaches, Federal Student Aid has issued general information regarding reporting of student loan interest payments. If a borrower made federal student loan payments in 2018, the borrower may be eligible to deduct a portion of the interest paid on the borrower’s 2018 federal tax return. Student loan interest payments are reported to both the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the borrower on IRS Form 1098-E, Student Loan Interest Statement. Please review the January 29, 2019 electronic announcement for additional information.
Revision of the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Application and Teacher Loan Forgiveness Forbearance Request: The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved revised versions of the Teacher Loan Forgiveness (TLF) Application and TLF Forbearance Request forms under OMB Control Number 1845-0059. The revised versions have an expiration date of September 30, 2020. The forms are for use by borrowers who are seeking forgiveness of loans made under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program and the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program. For additional information, please review the January 29, 2019 electronic announcement.
CPS Resumes Selective Service System Match on January 31, 2019: Federal Student Aid (FSA) is informing all schools that on January 31, 2019, the Central Processing System (CPS) has resumed its daily match with the Selective Service System (SSS) for both 2018-19 and 2019-20. FSA has also begun reprocessing 2018–19 and 2019–20 application and correction records impacted by the Selective Service System (SSS) match bypass that occurred during the recent federal government shutdown.
As described in the January 9, 2019 Electronic Announcement, during the SSS match bypass, the CPS assigned comment code 390 and a blank Selective Service Match Flag to impacted Student Aid Reports (SARs) and Institutional Student Information Records(ISIRs) unless the corrected transaction already had a valid SSS match flag value that the CPS could pull forward. FSA estimates that up to 600,000 student transactions are affected. This total includes initial applications and corrections submitted to the CPS between December 26, 2018 and January 30, 2019 for both processing cycles. For additional information on how CPS will handle the reprocessing effort, please review the January 31, 2019 electronic announcement for additional information.
NOTE: Due to limited space in FA Solutions’ Fed-Updates newsletter, only the titles and links to the updates below are provided here.
- 2019-01-24 – Maximum HEAL Program Interest Rates for Quarter Ending March 31, 2019
- 2019-01-24 – 2019-2020 Award Year Deadline Dates for Campus-Based Programs
INFORMATION PAGES FOR SCHOOLS TO MONITOR WEEKLY: The list below represents just a few of the information pages available on the IFAP website. Please review the organization’s website for additional guidance, resources, deadlines, and information related to the administration and processing of Title IV federal student aid.
- COD System – Schools are urged to regularly monitor this page, which includes COD Processing News/Updates.
- NSLDS newsletters, user guides and technical documents
- Gainful Employment
- Early FAFSA
- Cash Management
- Loan Servicing and Collection
- Perkins Loan FAQs
- 150 Percent Direct Subsidized Loan Limit Information
- Application Processing (Electronic Announcements)
- The iFAP iLibrary includes many resources — including a consolidated list of Electronic Announcements, Dear Colleague Letters, and Federal Registers.
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