Part: 3 - - Filling Out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid
SectionTitle: "Simplified Needs Test"
PURPOSE: THE INSTRUCTIONS TO THE FAFSA INCLUDES A
WORKSHEET TO DETERMINE IF THE STUDENT NEEDS TO
FILL OUT THE SUPPLEMENTAL INFORMATION IN
SECTION I. THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THE "SIMPLIFIED
NEEDS TEST" IS TO SHORTEN THE APPLICATION PROCESS
FOR STUDENTS FROM LOW-INCOME FAMILIES.
Basically, the student does not have to fill out the Supplemental
Information if the family's income was $49,999 or less and the
family did not use the IRS Form 1040 to file taxes (i.e., the family
did not file a return, or used the 1040A or 1040EZ). Therefore, a
family that used the 1040 as an income tax return because it could
not obtain a 1040A or 1040EZ, or because it used a tax preparer's
standard form, cannot qualify for the simplified needs test.
Note that Federal Work-Study earnings must be excluded from the
AGI when determining if the family's income exceeded $49,999 --
student financial aid is excluded from income on the worksheet, as
elsewhere on the application.
The simplified needs test will usually increase a student's eligibility
because it does not include family assets.