On Oct. 1, two changes went into effect for the 2017–18 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®).
— Students are now able to submit a FAFSA® earlier. Students have been able to file a 2017–18 FAFSA since Oct. 1, 2016, three months earlier than has previously been the case. The earlier submission date is a permanent change, enabling students to complete and submit a FAFSA as early as Oct. 1 every year. (There is no change to the 2016–17 schedule. The FAFSA became available Jan. 1 as in previous years.)
— Students now report earlier income information. Beginning with the 2017–18 FAFSA, students are required to report income information from an earlier tax year. For example, on the 2017–18 FAFSA, students (and parents, as appropriate) must report their 2015 income information, rather than their 2016 income information.
For more information on the changes, visit https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/.