Students sitting on the third floor of the Student Center studying and having conversations.

Financial Aid Application Process

How Do I Apply for Financial Aid?

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is available each October for the coming academic year. When you file your FAFSA electronically it will be submitted to the Department of Education and to the schools you select on the FAFSA. The FAFSA collects income data for you and your parents. The FAFSA is used to determine eligibility for all federal, NJ state and institutional aid programs, including grants, loans and federal work-study.

Which FAFSA Should I File?

Enrollment Term FAFSA to File When Is The FAFSA Available?
Fall 2020

Spring 2021

Summer 2021

2020-2021 FAFSA October 1, 2019 – June 30, 2021
Fall 2021

Spring 2022

Summer 2022

2021-2022 FAFSA October 1, 2020 – June 30, 2022

Montclair State University Federal School Code: 002617

Things to Remember:

  • The FAFSA must be completed every academic year.
  • Montclair State University has a priority deadline of February 1st.
  • A valid FAFSA must be on file before your last date of enrollment in order to be considered for financial aid.
  • Verification, if selected, must be completed before your last day of class in order for federal financial aid to the process.
  • You must meet federal Satisfactory Academic Progress to be eligible for financial aid.

Please Note: Dreamers do NOT need to fill out the FAFSA. Dreamers DO need to complete the NJ Alternative Application for Financial Aid. For information about financial aid options for NJDreamers, visit our New Jersey Dreamers web page.


In order to complete the FAFSA online, you will need a Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID. If you do not already have an FSA ID, create one now. Parents of dependent students also need to apply for an FSA ID. The FSA ID will allow you to sign the FAFSA electronically. Please use different email addresses; do NOT use your high school email address.

Visit the Department of Education blog: 8 Steps to Filling Out the FAFSA Form

Visit the Department of Education blog: 8 Steps to Filling Out the FAFSA Form


How Is Financial Need Determined?

Each college or university develops an estimate of how much it will cost for you to attend school including tuition and fees, books and supplies, room and board, personal expenses, transportation and miscellaneous expenses. This is called your Cost of Attendance and it will vary from one institution to another. It also varies depending on the number of credits you are taking, if you are graduate or an undergraduate student and if you are living on campus or off campus.

To determine your financial need, your expected family contribution (which is calculated by submitting the FAFSA) is subtracted from the cost of attendance. This determines your aid eligibility for all aid funds.

Your Financial Aid

Once we receive the results of your FAFSA and other required forms, we will determine your your financial aid eligibility based on your financial need. It is Montclair State’s policy to award scholarships and grants first, followed by employment and loans for which you qualify.

A financial aid notification outlining your financial aid will be prepared for you and made available on NEST. You will receive an email once this is ready to view. This notice will include general information about each fund offered and instructions for rejecting any aid that you do not want. Some aid types (e.g., parent or private loans) require supplemental applications.

Verification

When you receive your FAFSA Student Aid Report, you may see the following message on the comments page:

“Your application has been selected for review in a process called verification. You must submit to your school signed copies of certain financial documents.”

If you receive this message, you have been selected for a process called verification. You will need to submit copies of your and your parent(s) (if dependent) federal tax returns for the appropriate year along with either the Dependent or Independent Verification Worksheet.

Your financial aid will not be credited to your account until you submit all required documents and verification is completed. This process can take up to four weeks depending on the time of year. We recommend that you submit your documents as quickly as possible to allow time for review. The deadline for submitting all verification documents is the last day of classes in the spring semester.

Receiving Your Financial Aid

The Student Accounts Office is responsible for crediting your financial aid to your student bill. Your financial aid is applied directly to institutional charges (tuition, fees, room and board). After the Add/Drop period has ended, excess funds will be available to you within 14 days of the date the credit balance occurs. The Student Accounts Office will process these funds and send them to you via Direct Deposit or a check. Any questions about billing or confirming registration, and not about financial aid, should be directed to Student Accounts.

Special Circumstances/Request for Review

While the process of determining your financial aid eligibility is basically the same for all applicants, there is some flexibility for specific circumstances. If you think you have a special circumstance, please go to the Request for Review page.