Because of a technical error, some users of tax preparation services have received notice that their 2012 tax returns were being held pending an IRS review. If you have been affected by the delay, you might be wondering whether to put off filing your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSASM) and/or whether your financial aid will be delayed.
Which Returns Were Affected
If you filed your taxes using a tax preparation service between February 14 and February 22, 2013, AND if your tax return included certain education tax credits that are claimed on IRS Form 8863, then you may be affected.
Affected tax filers were notified of the situation by their tax preparer or software provider and can expect a four- to six-week delay in the processing of their returns. Find more information in the IRS Statement on Form 8863, Education Credits.
How the Delay May Impact Your Financial Aid
If you have already filed your FAFSA, you may be concerned that important financial aid award information will not be available in time for you to make college-going decisions. After all, the FAFSA asks for tax information (among other data), and your college’s financial aid office uses FAFSA results to determine your eligibility for financial aid. Please be assured that colleges have been notified of the delay and are ready to assist you if your tax return was affected. We have encouraged schools to provide estimated financial aid awards based on the information you provide on your FAFSA.
If you have not yet filed your FAFSA, you do not need to put off submitting it until your tax return has been processed by the IRS.
- If you have already completed your tax return, simply refer to your copy of the return and type the information into the appropriate places on the FAFSA.
- If you have not completed your tax return, go ahead and fill out your FAFSA using estimated information.
If you have specific questions about your financial aid and how the Form 8863 delay might affect you, contact your school’s financial aid office.