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How To Create An FSA ID


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A Federal Student Aid ID (FSA ID) is a unique identifier that allows you to log in to Department of Education websites.

You need this ID to complete the FAFSA online, view your financial aid history, accept loans, and select student loan repayment plans.

The sooner you get your FSA ID setup, the easier it will be for you to manage everything related to loans and grants. Let’s explore how to set up your FSA ID.

Setting Up The FSA ID

To set up your FSA ID, you’ll need a personal email address and your Social Security Number (SSN). From there, here are the steps to follow:

  1. Go to StudentAid.gov and select the blue Create Account button.
  2. Enter your full name, date of birth, and SSN into the form. If you don’t have an SSN, you must attest that you’re either filling out the form on behalf of your child (who is a Citizen of the United States), or that you’re a citizen without a Social Security Number.
  3. Select your communication preference (email or regular mail.)The Department of Education will use these contact details to send you information about your Financial Aid, repayment plans, and more.
  4. Select four challenge questions and answers. These questions will allow you to recover your FSA ID if you forget your username or password.
  5. Review all your information and edit it if necessary. This includes verifying your email address and phone number, so you can set up multi-factor authentication.

Multi-Factor Authentication Setup

Select the “Verify” button next to your phone number and email address. You’ll then receive a 6-digit code to enter into the website. Multi-factor authentication ensures that your FSA ID is truly safe and secure and can reduce the likelihood of identity theft. There’s also an option to set up an authenticator app as your second-factor of authentication.

You and Your Children Need AN FSA ID

Parents who are filling out the FAFSA and all of their college-bound children each need a unique FSA ID. If you’re a parent, you will use your FSA ID to fill out the FAFSA. Students will use their FSA ID to review financial aid, take out loans, and set up student loan repayment options.

Resetting Your Password

You can reset or recover a forgotten username or password by going to StudentAid.gov. When logging in, select the account lookup option. You’ll need to provide your username, email address, or phone number for recovery. You also must provide the month and day of your birthday. With that information, you’ll be given the option to reset your password.

The recovery process is fairly simple, but you may be better off storing the password in a password manager, so you can keep the information secure.

Why You Need An FSA ID

An FSA ID isn’t strictly necessary for completing the FAFSA, but it makes it much easier to correct mistakes, track progress, and connect your FAFSA to student aid history and more. The FSA ID can serve as a legal signature when you’re completing the FAFSA or when you’re signing the Master Promissory Note, which is the legal document you sign when taking out student loans.

You’ll also use your FSA ID to complete loan entrance and exit counseling, view loan and grant information, apply for Direct PLUS loans, and apply for Public Service Loan Forgiveness.

Even if you make a dedicated effort to get rid of your student debt quickly, you’ll likely need your FSA ID for a decade. If you opt to use an income-driven repayment plan, you may need the FSA ID for several decades.

Final Takeaways

Whether you’re applying to college for the first time, or want to change your student loan repayment plan, an FSA ID will help you find information and take action. Setting up the FSA ID takes just a few minutes, and will help you in every step of the student loan borrowing and repayment process.

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