Maintained for Historical Purposes

This resource is being maintained for historical purposes only and is not currently applicable.

Corrections and Updates

AwardYear: 1998-1999
SectionNumber: III
SectionTitle: Corrections and Updates
PageNumbers: 22-27

[[This file contains "Section III, Corrections and Updates" in Portable Document Format (PDF). It can be viewed with version 3.0 or greater of the free Adobe Acrobat Reader software.]]


The first step in the application process is sending a student's application information into the system, and receiving that student's processed application data back from the system. When data must be updated under the limited circumstances allowed by regulation, or must be corrected, additional steps are required.

In the electronic system, changes (corrections or updating) can be made to any student's record regardless of whether it originally entered the system as a paper or an electronic application. Both updates and corrections are referred to as correction transactions. The electronic correction process requires that signed correction documentation be maintained by the school that inputs the new information. Documentation can be a paper SAR or other documents such as tax returns, a verification worksheet, or a change-of-address form. The FAA enters the changes on the EDExpress screen, transmits them to the CPS, and receives an ISIR containing the new processed data. In this situation, when the input is electronic, the student receives a SAR Information Acknowledgement.

Part 2 of the SAR is a vehicle for corrections in the paper system. Students may use the SAR to correct and update their application information, and mail the SAR to a FAFSA processor for data entry. After the corrections are processed, the student receives a new two-part SAR and the schools receive ISIRs.

If a student's application information is not rejected, and for students receiving Reject 19 only, Part 2 of the SAR is an Information Review Form (IRVF). A student whose application is rejected for any other reason receives a Part 2 called the Information Request Form (IRQF).

On Part 2 of all SARs, the top right corner of each page shows the date the SAR was processed. The message "BA DEG RECÂ’D" or "GRAD/PROF" will be printed under the date if either applies to the student. The student's EFC is printed if the SAR has a calculated EFC. The student's original social security number and DRN appear on the right side of the page, just above the information columns.

The bottom left of each page in Part 2 has a set of numbers in small type. On the left appears the SAR sort type/serial number. These numbers are used by the FAFSA processors to identify and track individual SARs and groups of applicant records that are sent in batches to the CPS.

The numbers at the bottom right of the page are the student's original SSN, the first two letters of the original last name, and the transaction number. These numbers also appear on Part 1, and are used by the FAFSA processors to ensure that SAR pages for each student are collated and packaged correctly.

As mentioned previously, when corrections need to be made to data reported on the SAR Information Acknowledgement, the student may have corrections transmitted electronically through EDExpress at a school, or the student may request a duplicate SAR (which will be a two-part SAR) and send corrections or updates to the FAFSA processor using Part 2 of the SAR.

[[This file contains the graphics "The SAR, Part 2: Information Review Form" on page 23 in Portable Document Format (PDF). It can be viewed with version 3.0 or greater of the free Adobe Acrobat Reader software.]]

Information Review Form (IRVF)

The IRVF is generated when the student provides enough information on the FAFSA to allow an official EFC to be calculated. The IRVF appears as Part 2 on Pell-eligible and Pell-ineligible SARs. A SAR that receives Reject 19 only (the student is in one of the Department's hold files) also receives the IRVF as Part 2 but will not have a calculated EFC. This applicant must resolve the eligibility problem to be released from the hold file, but otherwise the information provided on the application appeared complete. Once an applicant is released from hold, the CPS will produce a system-generated SAR based on the application information.

The "YOU TOLD US" column shows a shortened version of each numbered item that corresponds to a question on the FAFSA, and has printed beneath it the student's response to that question. The second column, "WRITE IN ONLY NEW OR CORRECTED INFORMATION" has boxes and ovals that resemble the answer fields on the FAFSA, and allow the student to indicate or write in a corrected answer, if necessary.

Items that are highlighted (printed in boldface type) require special attention. Highlighting means the CPS identified the responses as questionable or inconsistent with other answers. The CPS may assume answers to certain questions by comparing them with other information on the application. Answers might be assumed when the question was left blank, or a positive number might be assumed when the answer to an income question was given as a negative number.

When the CPS assumes an answer, both the reported value (value = answer) and the assumed value are printed on the SAR. The word "ASSUMED" will appear in parentheses with the assumed value. Assumed values are used by the CPS in performing the calculation and should always be reviewed carefully. If the assumed values are correct, the student does not need to change them on the IRVF.

Fields that show assumed values or that trigger certain edits can also be identified as highlighted items on the ISIR. The fields will have an "H" printed next to the questioned or assumed item. On the ISIR, highlighted items are designated with a pound sign (e.g., #).

The student can always correct other items, if necessary, whether or not they are highlighted.

[[This file contains the graphics "The SAR, Part 2: Information Request Form" on page 24 in Portable Document Format (PDF). It can be viewed with version 3.0 or greater of the free Adobe Acrobat Reader software.]]

Information Request Form (IRQF)

When an applicant receives any reject other than Reject 19, the resulting SAR will have an Information Request Form (IRQF) as Part 2 and will not have a calculated EFC. The IRQF requires the student to correct information and return the SAR to the CPS for reprocessing.

The IRQF also has two columns, like the IRVF. The first, "YOU TOLD US," shows the numbered questions and the student's response. The second column, "WRITE IN ONLY NEW OR CORRECTED INFORMATION," provides the same boxes and ovals as the IRVF for the student to write in a new or corrected response.

When an item is questioned by the CPS, it will be highlighed (printed in bold type) and an arrow will print in the "YOU TOLD US" column pointing to the response field for the questioned item. This indicates that the student must provide a new answer because the original response was blank or illegible, and the item is necessary to perform an EFC calculation. The student may also correct other items, if necessary, even if they are not highlighted.

At the top of the IRQF are instructions to the student explaining the meaning of the arrows, and the proper way to verify an answer, fill in an oval, or to delete an answer. In 1997-98, we changed the procedures for verifying a previously reported answer. To verify, the student must rewrite the same value in the answer fields and return the SAR.

Sometimes students are caught in a reject "loop" because they don't respond to all of the highlighted and arrowed items to turn off the reject, or because they provide new information that the edit check still considers to be inconsistent or questionable.

Parent Information for Independent Students

The SARs for dependent students and for independent students contain exactly the same sections and numbered items as the FAFSA. Parent information will be printed in the parent section for an independent student if the student provided it on the FAFSA. Students in the health professions are instructed to provide parental data, because the data are required by many health profession schools to award Title VII aid. Parental data provided by independent students will not be subject to any edits, but the data will appear on the SAR and on ISIRs and be carried forward on all transactions.

Parental data are always required for dependent students and will be edited and used in the EFC calculation.

Signatures for SAR Corrections

On the last page of Part 2, a message in the top left corner shows the address where SAR corrections should be mailed.

In the top right corner of the same page, the student is asked to certify that any corrections made on Part 2 are accurate and complete. This statement must be signed by the student. You may note that the wording of the certification has been changed to the same wording that appears on the FAFSA. For a dependent student at least one parent must sign, and for a married, independent student, the spouse should sign, although it is not required.

Reject 16 SARs-Signatures and Certifications

SARs with Reject 16 are mailed to students who submitted their applications via FAFSA Express or FAFSA on the Web, but did not follow up with a signed Signature/Certification page, or the page was incomplete and could not be processed. If the record indicates that a printer was not available to the student, the CPS processes the application immediately and mails a Reject 16 SAR. If the record indicates that a printer was available, the CPS holds the transmission for up to 14 calendar days while waiting for a Signature Page. If a signature is not received in 14 days, the CPS processes the record and sends a Reject 16 SAR. A Reject 16 SAR will not have a calculated EFC, and on this type of SAR only, Part 2 will contain the Statement of Educational Purpose and the Certification Statement on Overpayments and Defaults.

To receive an EFC calculation, the student must sign Part 2 of a Reject 16 SAR and return it to the FAFSA processor's address indicated on the SAR. The student can also make other corrections to the Reject 16 SAR at the same time, if necessary. By signing and returning the certification statements along with the application data, the student completes the application process. Note that Reject 16 may appear with other rejects or highlighted data requiring correction or verification.

When the student does mail in a Signature Page, an EFC can be calculated and Reject 16 does not apply.

Reject 15 SARs -Renewal FAFSA on the Web

As explained in Action Letter #3 (GEN-97-13), students who receive a paper Renewal FAFSA from their schools or from the Department may be able to apply using Renewal FAFSA on the Web. A student must reside at the address that is currently in the applicant database, and can request an Electronic Access Code (EAC) at the Department's web site: http:\beginning November 24, 1997. With the EAC, a student may access his or her 1997-98 application information, respond to the required Renewal FAFSA questions, update or correct any of the previous information, and transmit the 1998-99 Renewal Application through the Internet.

For an independent student, the EAC serves as signature and certification, and this student does not need to print and mail a signature page to complete the application process. For a dependent student, the EAC also serves as the student's signature and certification, but this student must provide a parent's signature to complete the process.

The Signature Page process for Renewal FAFSA on the Web (dependent student) will work exactly as the process previously described for FAFSA Express and FAFSA on the Web. If a printer is available, the dependent student may print out a Signature Page, obtain the parent's signature, and mail it to the Processor. The transmitted application is held up to 14 days while waiting for a Signature Page. If a signature is not received in 14 days, the CPS processes the record and sends a Reject 15 SAR ( Reject 15 is used when the parent signature is required, but missing from an application or SAR). The dependent student's parent must sign and return the Reject 15 SAR to complete the process for Renewal FAFSA on the Web.

If a printer is not available, the student will indicate this on the electronic transmission. The CPS will process the record immediately and send a Reject 15 SAR.

New for 1998-99: the CPS will send ISIRs for a Reject 16 transaction to schools that the student listed on the FAFSA Express application, and to state agencies.

SAR Part 2 General Information

On the last page of Part 2, we print important information and instructions for all students on a page headed "Instructions and Codes."

Two of the FAFSA questions - course of study and type of degree/certificate - require the student to enter a code number rather than a literal response. To assist students in correcting these two fields, the instruction page provides code lists for the questions.

If corrections are not necessary, the student may retain Part 2 as a summary of the application questions and responses.

School Use Only Box

An aid administrator can perform a dependency override from dependent to independent on the SAR by using the "School Use Only" box at the end of Part 2 (see illustrations, next page). This box is designated "Professional Judgment" to identify the two types of professional judgment actions a financial aid administrator may perform, i.e., dependency override or FAA EFC Adjustment. To perform a dependency override, the FAA fills in the oval marked "1" on the line labeled D/O (Dependency Override), fills in the school's six-character Title IV School Code, and signs in the signature space. Dependency overrides can be performed on either the IRVF or the IRQF as well as on the FAFSA or Renewal Application. The SAR also allows an FAA to cancel a dependency override by filling in oval "2" in the D/O section, and providing the Title IV School Code and a signature.

The Dependency Override indicator in the FAA Information section will contain this information: a "Y" if an override from dependent to independent was performed (comment 164 is triggered); an "N" if a dependency override was cancelled (comment 165 is triggered); and "blank" if no action was taken.

If a dependency override action is not performed correctly, the student receives comment 46.

Dependency Status Changes in the Electronic System

The EDExpress software provides a dialogue box following the student status questions, and asks whether a dependency override will be performed. At this stage, an FAA may enter the code to perform the override from dependent to independent and subsequent screens will bring up only those questions the independent student must answer.

The other type of Professional Judgment that may be performed using the School Use Box is a request for a professional judgment adjustment indicating that the FAA used professional judgment to make changes to one or more data elements. To indicate the request, the FAA would fill in the oval marked "FAA EFC Adjustment," provide the Title IV School Code and a signature.

The Information Request Form on a rejected SAR (shown on the next page) does not allow this type of professional judgment adjustment because the student has not received an EFC. When a professional judgment request is processed, the resulting SAR or ISIR carries a flag of "Y" in the "FAA EFC Adjustment Request" location, and a comment (#27) stating that the record resulted from a professional judgment action.

[[This file contains the graphics "School Use Only Box on IRQF (rejected SAR) and IRVF (nonrejected SAR)" on page 27 in Portable Document Format (PDF). It can be viewed with version 3.0 or greater of the free Adobe Acrobat Reader software.]]

Last Modified: 09/27/1998