The FSA ID | Federal Student Aid

The FSA ID is the username and password you use on federal student aid websites such as fafsa.gov and StudentLoans.gov.

If you’re ready, you can create an FSA ID now.

 

The FSA ID

Students, parents, and borrowers are required to use an FSA ID, made up of a username and password, to access certain U.S. Department of Education websites. Your FSA ID is used to confirm your identity when accessing your financial aid information and electronically signing your federal student aid documents. 

If you want to create an FSA ID now, go for it!
Button: Create Your FSA ID Now

Update your FSA ID account

If you’d like more information first, keep on reading…

About the FSA ID

What is an FSA ID?
Where can I use my FSA ID?
When should I get an FSA ID?
How do I get an FSA ID?
Do I need to have a mobile phone or email address to create my FSA ID?
Do parents need FSA IDs?
Can I create an FSA ID for my child, parent, or spouse?
When can I use my new FSA ID?
How do I check the Social Security Administration match status of my FSA ID?
How can I tell if I already have an FSA ID?
After I get an FSA ID, will I still be required to use my Federal Student Aid PIN?
What happened to the Federal Student Aid PIN?
Does my FSA ID expire?
How do I update my FSA ID account?

Common Issues With the FSA ID

Why won’t my FSA ID work?
What do I do if it says my Social Security information doesn’t match?
What if I forget my FSA ID username or password?
Why can’t I use my mobile phone or email address to retrieve my username or reset my password?
What do I do if I get a message saying my FSA ID is locked?
I received emails about an FSA ID, but I didn’t sign up for one. Should I be worried?
What if my FSA ID was lost or stolen?

Try This Resource 
Creating and Using the FSA ID fact sheet–Explains what an FSA ID is, how you get one, and what you use it for. Includes top tips for using an FSA ID.

What is an FSA ID?

An FSA ID is a username and password that you must use to log in to certain U.S. Department of Education (ED) websites. Your FSA ID identifies you as someone who has the right to access your own personal information on ED websites such as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) site at fafsa.gov.

It’s important to understand that the student and the parent may not share an FSA ID: Your FSA ID is your signature, so it has to be unique to you. If you are a parent of a dependent student, you will need your own FSA ID if you want to sign your child's FAFSA electronically. If you have more than one child attending college, you can use the same FSA ID to sign all applications, but each child must have his or her own. Please note: Each FSA ID user must have a unique mobile phone number and/or email address.

Your FSA ID is used to sign legally binding documents electronically. It has the same legal status as a written signature. Don't give your FSA ID to anyone or allow anyone to create an FSA ID for you—not even your parent, your child, or someone helping you fill out the FAFSA. Sharing your FSA ID is like teaching someone to forge your signature; and it could put you at risk of identity theft!

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Where can I use my FSA ID?

Once your information is verified with the Social Security Administration (one–three days from the date you apply), you will be able to use your FSA ID to access your personal information on any of these ED websites, depending on what you need to do:

Website

What You Can Do at the Site

fafsa.gov

  • Electronically sign your (or your child's) FAFSA® form.
  • Prefill data in this year´s FAFSA form if you filed a FAFSA form last year. That's called filling out a Renewal FAFSA form.
  • Make online corrections to an existing FAFSA form.
  • View or print an online copy of your Student Aid Report (SAR).

"My Federal Student Aid" at StudentAid.gov/login or the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS®) site at nslds.ed.gov

  • View a history of any federal student aid that you have received.
  • Look up your loan servicer's contact information.

StudentLoans.gov

  • Complete entrance counseling, the Financial Awareness Counseling Tool, or exit counseling.
  • Electronically sign a Master Promissory Note (MPN).
  • Complete PLUS loan requests.
  • Estimate your student loan payments using the Repayment Estimator.
  • Apply for an income-driven repayment plan or a consolidation loan.

Agreement to Serve (ATS) at StudentLoans.gov/myDirectLoan/launchTeach.action

  • Sign your ATS for the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program.

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When should I get an FSA ID?

You, and your parent if you're a dependent student, should get an FSA ID as soon as possible. You can apply for an FSA ID at any time, but in some cases, you’ll need to wait up to three days before you’re able to use your FSA ID, so we recommend registering early. If you don't have one by the time you fill out your FAFSA form, you will be prompted to apply for one. However, if you think the Social Security Administration (SSA) might have the wrong name or date of birth for you in its records, go to ssa.gov now to find out how to correct any errors. Your information must be correct with the SSA before your FAFSA form or FSA ID can be processed.

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How do I get an FSA ID?

You can create an FSA ID when logging into certain ED websites, including this one. Create an FSA ID now.

The FSA ID process consists of three main steps:

  1. Enter your log-in information.
  • Provide your email address, a unique username, and a password.
  1. Enter your personal information.
  • Provide your name, date of birth, and Social Security number (SSN).
  • Enter your mailing address.
  • Select whether or not you would like to register your mobile phone number for account recovery using text messages.
  • Provide your mobile phone number.
  • Select your language preference.
  • For security purposes, complete the four challenge questions and answers.
  1. Submit your FSA ID information.
  • Agree to the terms and conditions.
  • Verify your mobile phone number. (This is optional, but helpful. This verification allows you to retrieve your username or reset your password without answering challenge questions.)
  • Verify your email address. (This is optional, but helpful. By verifying your email address, you can use your email address as your username when logging into certain ED websites. Also, we’ll be able to notify you by email of changes to your account. This verification also allows you to retrieve your username or reset your password without answering challenge questions.)
     

Try This Resource
"How to Create Your FSA ID" video–Explains what an FSA ID is and why you need one, and provides the step-by-step process of creating an FSA ID.

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Do I need to have a mobile phone or email address to create my FSA ID?

No, a mobile phone or an email address is not required to create or use an FSA ID. However, we strongly recommend that you do enter your mobile phone number and your email address when you create your FSA ID. If we have your mobile phone number and email address on file, it’s easier for us to help you if you get locked out of your account or forget your username or password. Also, your email address can be used as an alternative to your username when you log in to fafsa.gov, StudentLoans.gov, or certain other websites. Your email address will also be used to protect your FSA ID by communicating important messages about changes to your account.       

Remember: A mobile phone or an email address can be associated with only one FSA ID. Why? The FSA ID is used to electronically sign documents such as loan promissory notes (which establish the binding legal obligation for the loan debt). Therefore, it is extremely important that any communications related to those documents or that FSA ID go to the correct person. Similarly, make sure you don’t let anyone else know your FSA ID or create it for you because you’ll be putting yourself at risk of identity theft or—at the very least—at risk of not knowing how to sign into your own accounts.

Important: When creating your FSA ID, don’t use your school-assigned email address. Use an email address that you’ll have access to after you leave school. You’ll probably need to use your FSA ID after you leave school, and it’s important to have an active email address associated with your FSA ID account.

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Do parents need FSA IDs?

Yes, a dependent student will need to have one of his or her legal parents sign the student’s FAFSA form, so the parent needs an FSA ID as well. Find out which parent’s information should be listed on the FAFSA form. It’s important to understand that the student and the parent may not share an FSA ID: Your FSA ID is your signature, so it has to be unique to you.

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Can I create an FSA ID for my child, parent, or spouse?

No. Only the owner of an FSA ID should create or use the account. Here's why:

  • The FSA ID serves as a legal signature and should not be shared with anyone, including family, school personnel, loan servicers, or contact center agents.
  • By creating your own FSA ID, you’re more likely to remember your username, password, and the answers to your challenge questions. Without these, you can lose access to your account and be unable to log in to Federal Student Aid websites.
  • An email address cannot be used with more than one FSA ID. If you forget your username or password, you can request that a secure code be emailed to you, allowing you to reset your username or password. For security reasons, you don’t want that code being sent to someone else.
  • A mobile phone number cannot be used with more than one FSA ID.  If you forget your username and password, you can request that a secure code be texted to your mobile phone, allowing you to retrieve your username and reset your password.

So, as you can see, you’ll need access to your (and only your) FSA ID and associated email address and mobile phone number.

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When can I use my new FSA ID?

You may immediately use your FSA ID to sign an original (first-time) FAFSA form, but nothing else (not even a Renewal FAFSA form). All other activities require that we match your information with the SSA.

If you verified your email address, you’ll receive an email once your information is matched with the SSA (one–three days from the date you apply). Once the process is complete, you will be able to use your FSA ID to fully access your financial aid information.

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How do I check the Social Security Administration match status of my FSA ID?

Check the SSA match status of your FSA ID at the "Manage My FSA ID" tab on the FSA ID site. At the site, enter your username and password. Then you will be able to see your account profile. In the top box under your name, you will see text that says “SSA Verification” and a status of “Matched,” “Not Matched,” or “Pending.”

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How can I tell if I already have an FSA ID?

The FSA ID replaced the Federal Student Aid PIN on May 10, 2015. If you have not logged into a Federal Student Aid website since May 10, 2015, then you probably don't have an FSA ID even if you submitted a FAFSA form earlier that year.

To check to see if you have an FSA ID, go to the "Create an FSA ID" page. Enter your FSA ID username and password. If you verified your email address during account creation, you can enter your email address instead of your username.

If you are able to log in and see your FSA ID profile, then you have an FSA ID. If you cannot log in, then you need to create an FSA ID. Go to the "Create an FSA ID" page to make an FSA ID. Only the FSA ID owner should create and use the account.

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After I get an FSA ID, will I still be required to use my Federal Student Aid PIN?

No. The FSA ID replaced the Federal Student Aid PIN in May 2015. It is no longer accepted on any ED websites or by any applications.

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What happened to the Federal Student Aid PIN?

The FSA ID replaced the Federal Student Aid PIN on May 10, 2015.

If you haven’t logged in to a Federal Student Aid website (such as fafsa.gov or StudentLoans.gov) since May 10, 2015, you will need to create an FSA ID before you can log on in the future. 

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Does my FSA ID expire?

Your username does not expire, but your FSA ID password will expire every 18 months unless you change it.

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How do I update my FSA ID account?

To update your FSA ID, go to the "Manage My FSA ID" tab on the FSA ID site. On this page, you will see two green buttons:

  • The “Update Account Information” button is for updating your personal information if you changed your name and/or incorrectly entered your SSN or date of birth.
  • The “Update Contact Information” button allows you to update your email address, mobile phone number, mailing address, and language preference. Remember, if you change your mobile phone number or your email address, you’ll need to reverify the information by entering a secure code.

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Why won’t my FSA ID work?

FSA IDs require that the information provided when creating the FSA ID matches the information entered in other ED websites.

Go to the "Manage My FSA ID" tab on the FSA ID site and enter your username and password. There are three things you should check to make sure your FSA ID is fully functional:

  1. Do you have the correct username and password? If your username and password do not allow you to access the site, click on “Forgot My Username?” or “Forgot My Password?” to try these account recovery options.
  2. Is your FSA ID matched with the SSA? If the status of your FSA ID is pending, your FSA ID is still being matched with the SSA and you should try to use your FSA ID in a day or so. (It takes one to three days from when the FSA ID was created to match with the SSA.) If your match status is Not Matched, your information did not match with the SSA. Click on the “Update Account Information” button and check to see that your name, SSN, and date of birth are entered exactly as they appear on your Social Security card. (If you changed your name, be sure that you are using the name on file with the SSA.)
  3. Is your FSA ID enabled? If the status of your FSA ID is disabled and you did not disable it, please call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243). 

Once you are sure your FSA ID is fully functional, make sure that the information you’re entering into the ED website matches what was used to create the FSA ID:

  1. If you are a student trying to sign your FAFSA form and your FSA ID is not working, check that the name, Social Security number, and date of birth exactly match the information in your FSA ID account.
  2. If you are a parent trying to sign your child’s FAFSA form and your FSA ID is not working, check to make sure that you are signing in the correct parent field that matches your information. 

If none of these tips work, please contact one of the following:

  • Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (800-433-3243) for "My Federal Student Aid," fafsa.gov, and the NSLDS site, or
  • Student Loan Support Center at 1-800-557-7394 for StudentLoans.gov.

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What do I do if it says my Social Security information doesn’t match?

If your SSA match status is Not Matched on your account profile page, your information didn’t match with the SSA. Click on the “Update Account Information” button to make sure your name, SSN, and date of birth are entered exactly as they appear on your Social Security card. (If you changed your name, be sure that you are using the name on file with the SSA.)

If the information provided is correct, you will need to contact the SSA at 1-800-772-1213.

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What if I forget my FSA ID username or password?

If you’ve forgotten your username or password, don’t worry; we provide options for you to recover your account information. On most of our log-in pages, you’ll find links that say something like “Forgot My Username” and “Forgot My Password” so you can start the process of recovering your information.

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Recovering Your Username

Click the “Forgot My Username” (or similar) link on the site you want to log in to, and select one of the following options: 

Option 1: Text a secure code to my mobile phone (your mobile phone must be verified to use this option).

  • Enter your mobile phone number and the month and day of your birthday.
  • Enter the secure code from your mobile phone.
  • Your username is shown on the screen.

Option 2: Email a secure code.

  • Enter your email address and the month and day of your birthday
  • Enter the secure code from your email.
  • Your username is shown on screen.

Option 3: Answer my challenge questions.

  • Enter your SSN, last name, and date of birth.
  • Answer your challenge questions correctly.
  • Your username is shown on screen.
     

Try This Resource
"What to Do If I Forgot My FSA ID Username" video–Explains how to retrieve your forgotten FSA ID username by a secure code received via text message or email or by answering challenge questions.

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Recovering Your Password

Click the “Forgot My Password” (or similar) link on the site you want to log in to, and select one of the following options:

Option 1: Use my username or verified email address.

  • Enter your username and the month and day of your birthday.
  • Select the one of the three options for recovery:
    • Text a secure code to my mobile phone.
    • Email a secure code.
    • Answer my challenge questions.
  • Create a new password.

Option 2: Use my mobile phone number

  • Enter your verified mobile phone number and the month and day of your birthday.
  • Select the one of the three options for recovery:
    • Text a secure code to my mobile phone.
    • Email a secure code.
    • Answer my challenge questions.
  • Create a new password.
     

Try This Resource
"What to Do If I Forgot My FSA ID Password" video–Explains how to reset your forgotten FSA ID password by a secure code received via text message or email or by answering challenge questions.

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Why can’t I use my mobile phone or email address to retrieve my username or reset my password?

If you didn’t verify your mobile phone or email address when you registered for your FSA ID, you will not be able to use them to retrieve your username, reset your password, or unlock your account. You will need to answer your challenge questions.

You can verify your mobile phone number or email address after creating an account by going to the "Manage My FSA ID" tab on the FSA ID site. At the site, enter your username and password. In the “Contact Information” box, click on the “Register” link to register your mobile phone number or the “Email me a secure code” link. If you are registering your mobile phone number, you will be asked to agree to register by clicking “yes” and to confirm your mobile phone number. If you are verifying your email address, you should receive an email with your secure code. On the following page, you will see a box to enter your secure code.

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What do I do if I get a message saying my FSA ID is locked?

An FSA ID is locked after three unsuccessful authentication attempts. You will be taken to a screen that says “Unlock Your FSA ID.” At that page, if you have a verified mobile phone number and/or verified email address, you can request that we send you a secure code to your verified mobile phone number or email address. If you didn’t verify or provide this information, you can use your challenge questions.  

On the “Unlock Your FSA ID” page, you can unlock your FSA ID by following these steps:

  1. Enter the month and day of your birth
  2. Select one of the options for unlocking your account:
    1. Text and Email
      1. Click "Text a secure code to my mobile phone" or "Email a secure code."
      2. A secure code will be sent to your mobile phone or email address.
      3. Enter the code within 20 minutes in the "Secure Code" box.
      4. Click "Submit."
      5. Once your FSA ID is unlocked, you will need to reset the password for your FSA ID.
    2. "Answer my challenge questions."
      1. Answer your challenge questions.
      2. Once your FSA ID is unlocked, you will need to reset the password for your FSA ID.

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I received emails about an FSA ID, but I didn’t sign up for one. Should I be worried?

Occasionally, a user will incorrectly enter his or her information. If you are worried that someone has created an FSA ID in your name, there is a simple way to check:

  1. Go to the "Manage My FSA ID" tab on the FSA ID site.
  2. Click the “Forgot My Username” link.
  3. Select the “Answer my challenge questions” option.
  4. Enter your SSN, last name, and date of birth.
  5. If there isn’t an FSA ID with your information, you’ll see the following message: “The personal identifiers you entered (Social Security number, last name, and date of birth) do not match the information we have on file. Delete the response you entered and try again, or select Help for more details.” 
  6. If there is an FSA ID with your information, you will see a page that says “Retrieve Your Username With Challenge Questions.” Contact the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) and report that you believe someone has created an account using your SSN.

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What if my FSA ID was lost or stolen?

If your FSA ID is lost or stolen, you must update your username and password at the "Manage My FSA ID" section of the FSA ID site. Contact the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) if you are concerned that your FSA ID has been misused.

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