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FinAid – Ever changing and ALWAYS challenging.

If you would like to subscribe to the newsletter directly, please reach out to us directly at one of the email address below. You may also sign up for it by filling in your information at the bottom of the homepage of our FA Solutions website. Thank you!

Rob Wright,  rwright@getfasolutions.com
Pam Notemyer Rogers, pnotemyer@getfasolutions.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 From FA Solutions: Because our newsletter updates are excerpts from the original electronic announcements obtained through the Information for Financial Aid Professionals (IFAP) website, please review the original update in its entirety by clicking links to the original posting included with each update. As a reminder, we are unable to post all Federal updates and deadlines in this newsletter. Therefore, schools and organizations are strongly encouraged to review additional information on the IFAP website to stay current on various financial aid topics — especially deadlines.

Transition from Paper G-845 Form to an Electronic Confirmation Process for Eligible Noncitizen Status: In April 2018, Federal Student Aid (FSA) plans to transition from the Department of Homeland Security-United States Customs and Immigration Services (DHS-USCIS) paper Form G-845 (for third step verification) to an electronic process via DHS’ Systematic for Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) system. FSA is currently in the process of completing final operational tasks required to transition authorized school users to the electronic process by the end of April 2018. DHS-USCIS is going paperless on May 1, 2018. DHS will reject (return to sender) all Forms G-845 received on or after this date. To avoid rejected Forms, schools are instructed to stop mailing Forms G-845 to DHS beginning on April 24, 2018. On that date, schools must hold all third step requests until their SAVE system access is activated. For additional information, including how schools will gain access to the SAVE system, please review the February 26, 2018 electronic announcement.

Upcoming Federal Student Aid System Access Changes for Professional Users: On March 18, 2018, Federal Student Aid (FSA) will implement several changes that will impact financial aid professional users of systems and websites behind FSA’s Access and Identity Management System (AIMS). These changes include new password requirements, updates to the deactivation process for FSA User IDs and Two Factor Authentication (TFA) tokens, and a new look and feel for the AIMS web pages. AIMS provides the authentication process for many Federal Student Aid systems, allowing an authorized user to log in once with an FSA User ID, password, and TFA token security code and then access multiple systems during one active session. For additional information, please review the March 8, 2018 electronic announcement, which addresses these topics:

  • New Password Requirements
  • Deactivation of FSA User ID and TFA Token after 90 Days of Inactivity
  • Updated Look and Feel of AIMS Web Pages
  • Browser Information Reminder
  • Contact Information

First Pell Grant Administrative Cost Allowance Payments for 2017–18 Award Year: The Federal Pell Grant (Pell Grant) regulations at 34 CFR 690.10 provide for an Administrative Cost Allowance (ACA) payment of $5.00 to each participating school for each student who receives a Pell Grant at that school for an award year. These funds may be used only to defray the costs of administering the Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, Federal Work-Study, and Federal Perkins Loan programs. The processing of Pell Grant ACA payments for all schools began on February 28, 2018. For additional information, please review the March 2, 2018 electronic announcement.

Disaster Assistance Letter from Secretary DeVos to Chief State School and Institution of Higher Education Officers: Secretary DeVos has issued a letter to Chief State School and Institution of Higher Education Officers regarding Disaster Assistance for Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria and the 2017 California wildfires. For additional information, please review the February 28, 2018 electronic announcement, which includes DeVos’ letter as an attachment.

FA Solutions Services:  There’s more to review below, but if you’re interested in learning more about FA Solutions’ services, please take a moment to reach out to us.  Ask us about our third-party financial aid processing, interim staffingfinancial aid processing supportand Student Experience Center. You can connect with us through our contact form, instant chat or contact us directly:

Gainful Employment Electronic Announcement #111 – Availability of Bulk Upload Functionality for the 2018 GE Disclosure Template:  The bulk upload tool for use with the 2018 Gainful Employment (GE) Disclosure Template recently became available, and the related Quick Start Guide has been updated to include instructions on how to use the tool. As a reminder, institutions will have until April 6, 2018 to update disclosures for each of their Gainful Employment (GE) programs, using the 2018 GE Disclosure Template. Please review the March 9, 2018 electronic announcement that includes links to the bulk upload tool.

eCampus-Based Transition #4 – Campus-Based Contact Information and Website Changes Effective March 26, 2018: As explained in earlier announcements (August 29, 2017 and December 21, 2017, and February 15, 2018), Federal Student Aid is transitioning Campus-Based business processes to the Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) System in spring 2018. Implementation is planned for the period March 23–25, 2018. For additional information, including details about how the eCampus-Based (eCB) System transition will change call center contact information and website links, please review the March 2, 2018 electronic announcement.

Renewal of Third Party Servicer Data Form – Reporting Requirement: The renewed Third Party Servicer Data Form recently became available. This form is used by entities that perform Title IV functions or services on behalf of eligible institutions, and was approved by The Office of Management and Budget (OMB). The form replaces the previous version that expired January 31, 2018. Entities that meet the definition of a Third Party Servicer, as defined in 34 CFR § 668.2, GEN-15-01 and GEN-16-15, are required to submit the form to the Third Party Servicer Oversight Group. For additional information, please review the March 9, 2018, electronic announcement, which includes the form as an attachment.

Federal Register Notice – Published March 7, 2018 – Comment Request; Experimental Sites Reporting Tool 2017: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Department of Education is proposing an additional 30 day public comment period for a new information collection related to the 2017 Experimental Sites Reporting Tool. Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before April 6, 2018. For additional information, please review the March 7, 2018 notice found in the Federal Register, Volume 83, Number 45 (Wednesday, March 7, 2018), [Notices] Pages 9727-9728].

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.

Thank you for taking the time to review our newsletter!

Rob Wright

Disclaimer of Liability: Every effort is made to provide accurate and complete information in FA Solutions’ newsletters. However, FA Solutions makes no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the contents of the newsletters and expressly disclaims liability for errors and omissions in the contents of its newsletters. Although FA Solutions may include links providing direct access to other Internet resources, including Websites, FA Solutions is not responsible for the accuracy or content of information contained in these sites.