The Verification Process
Verification is the process established by the Department of Education (ED) to check the accuracy of financial aid applications. Schools are authorized to collect certain documentation, for review, in order to complete this process. If the information submitted conflicts with the information provided on a FAFSA, schools are authorized and obligated to make a correction to the FAFSA before financial aid eligibility can be accurately determined and funds disbursed. In some cases, these adjustments will require a revision to your award. A notice will be emailed promptly to the student if there is an adjustment to the award.
If you are selected for verification, you will need to complete the worksheet specific to your verification group for the aid year requested. After all of the questions on the form are completed, be sure to provide all required signature(s) and attach requested supporting documents. If additional information is required, we will contact you.
As part of the verification process, taxable income for all tax filers from the previous year must be validated. To verify taxable income, you must either:
- Select the IRS data retrieval process link through the FAFSA online (this option is currently unavailable), or
- Request Tax Return transcripts through the IRS:
- WEBSITE: https://www.irs.gov/Individuals/Get-Transcript Your information will be mailed to you.
- PHONE: Call 1-800-908-9946. Your information will be mailed to you within 10 days.
- MAIL: Complete a FORM 4506 and mail it or fax it to the address/number on the form. Your information will be mailed to you.
**For the 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 academic years, a signed copy of the 2015 Federal Tax return that was submitted to the IRS (including all schedules) will be accepted in place of the tax transcript.**
Additional information on obtaining your prior year tax information can be found here.
**Please note: if you are married and have filed separate from your spouse, you will need to request the above information for both you and your spouse. You will not be able to utilize the IRS Data Retrieval process.
- If the IRS requires you to file a tax return based on your earnings and you have not filed, you will need to file your tax return in order to complete the verification process and receive federal financial aid.
- If you reported on the FAFSA that parents and/or the student filed an amended Federal Tax Return for 2015, submit your 1040x form along with the amended 1040 form.
- If the IRS granted you an extension on filing your federal tax returns please contact the Office of Financial Aid to determine which documents are needed.
- If you are a victim of IRS identity theft who is not able to obtain a 2015 IRS Tax Return Transcript, or use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, contact the IRS at 1-800-908-4490.
Untaxed income and other items must be verified. For example:
- Child support received in 2015.
- Child support paid in 2015.
- Low family income.
- Food stamps (SNAP).
- High school completion status.
- Identity. Complete a statement of educational purpose. This must be done in person at the financial aid office or through a notary.
The verification process can take up to two weeks. It is important to submit all requested documents prior to July 1 or within 14 days of the initial request so that your award can be finalized prior to the start of the term. Once the verification process is complete, your financial aid will appear as a credit on your billing statement.
The deadline to submit verification for 2016-2017 is September 1, 2017 or no later than 120 days after the last date of attendance, whichever is first. Student loans must be originated before your last day of attendance. If verification is not complete by this date, a loan cannot be originated and you will forfeit your right to these funds.
If changes are made to your award based on the results of verification, you will be notified via email and will be directed to view your new award online through your BannerWeb account. You can check the status of verification anytime through your BannerWeb account under the Eligibility and Requirements tab.
If you are selected for Verification, but do not complete the process, no federal financial aid funds, including loans, will be credited to your student account.