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Filing the CSS Profile isn’t free unless you qualify for a fee waiver.
The CSS Profile is used to determine your eligibility for state and institutional financial aid. You can submit the form as an accompaniment to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, which determines eligibility for federal aid like grants, scholarships, work-study and federal student loans.
But the CSS Profile, unlike the FAFSA, isn't free.
How much does the CSS Profile cost?
The CSS Profile costs $25 to submit. That fee covers only one school; you’ll have to pay an additional $16 per school if you’re applying for aid elsewhere. You’ll also need to submit the CSS Profile each year you plan to attend a school that accepts the application.
Typically, you can have your FAFSA application sent to up to 10 schools. But sending your CSS Profile to 10 schools would cost $169. (Note that not all schools accept the CSS Profile.)
How do I know if I'm eligible for a fee waiver?
You may be eligible for a CSS Profile fee waiver if you’re a first-year undergraduate applicant whose parents live in the United States and you meet one of the following qualifications:
You received an SAT fee waiver.
The parental income you reported on your application is approximately $45,500 or less for a family of four.
You are an orphan or ward of the court under the age of 24.
What does a CSS Profile fee waiver cover?
The CSS Profile fee waiver covers the initial application costs and fees for additional reports. You can determine whether you qualify for a fee waiver when you go through the online payment process to submit your completed CSS Profile.