H.R.4478: Simple FAFSA Act of 2019

Overview

The FAFSA Act of 2019 (H.R 4478) would amend the Higher Education Act to remove barriers for students seeking federal financial aid by simplifying the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and increasing support for vulnerable populations by:

1) Reducing the number of questions on the FAFSA by placing the applicant into one of three pathways based on the complexity of a student’s finances.
2) Allowing low-income students and families to qualify for a full Pell Grants by creating an automatic zero estimated family contribution for applicants who received a means-tested federal benefit in the previous two years.
3) Reducing the “work penalty” that many students face when working to support themselves and offsetting rising college costs, by enacting a 35 percent increase to the income protection allowance (IPA) for working students.
4) Requiring the FAFSA to be filed only one time. Simplifies the FAFSA for low-income students by requiring dependent Pell Grant recipients to file a FAFSA just once before going to college, as opposed to the required annual filing.
5) Permitting applicants to use income data from the previous year’s tax return on the FAFSA.
6) Extending the Pell Grant eligibility to DREAMers.
7) Reinstating Pell Grant eligibility for students with drug-related offenses by repealing the 1998 prohibition on federal financial aid for college students convicted of a drug offense and eliminates drug questions on the FAFSA.

View Full Overview

Our Stance

Support

Priority

Low

Bill Number

H.R.4478

Date Introduced

September 24, 2019

Committee

House Education and Labor Committee

Bill Status

Introduced or Prefiled