FSA ID Step-by-Step Process
An FSA ID will be required for everyone (student or parent) to access the FAFSA starting with the 2024-2025 award year. There will no longer be a save key as everyone needs an FSA ID to log in.
In July 2022, a Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) process was added to anyone who is establishing their first FSA ID. Students and parents new to logging into the studentaid.gov website will need to go through this process.
Pro Tip: We recommend that students and parents accept all methods for authentication (text, email and authenticator app) so that if one method fails, they have other options. We also recommend that students take a picture of their backup code in case they need it for later.
Workshop Opportunity: Because the FSA ID is required for everyone, we recommend hosting multiple workshops throughout the year to walk families through the process. A suggested timeline for events can be found here.
- Enable box
- Save backup code
- Log in
- Select an authentifcation method
- If you need help: Access my account
- If you need help: Use the backup code
- If you need help: Challenge questions
If you need help: Generate a new backup code
Backup codes can only be used once. If a user has used theirs or lost it, they can go into Settings then “Two-Step Verification” and generate a new code. This will only work for users who can log in to their account. If you still need further help, live help is available here, along with a help phone number.
Contributors without a Social Security Number
Parents without social security numbers will now be able to get an FSA ID electronically. Transunion knowledge-based questions will be used to verify identity, or documents may be provided to verify identity.
Live language help is available for many different languages if you call the help center here.
Please note: Students who do not have a Social Security Number cannot complete a FAFSA. Students under DACA can get a social security number, so they can complete a FAFSA, but those students are not eligible for federal or North Carolina government aid. They should check with their colleges to see if the FAFSA is the preferred form for receiving aid at the institution they will attend. See how to advise students without an SSN here.
Help determine which parent needs an FSA ID
In the case of complicated family relationships, it’s often a complex process to determine which parent(s) would be deemed the contributor(s) for the FAFSA. For this reason, the 2024-2025 FAFSA will include a “Who’s My Parent” Wizard that asks questions to help the student determine which parent(s) are the appropriate contributors.
FSA is working on an infographic they hope to release early fall that will help determine which parents will need to set up an FSA ID.