Selection for Verification
Verification is the process of checking the data you reported on
the FAFSA against actual Federal income tax return transcripts
and statements documenting household size, number in college and
untaxed income. The Federal processor selects student FAFSA
results for verification. Students are notified in the
cover letter of their Student Aid Report (SAR) that they have
been selected for review and an asterisk is placed next to the
Expected Family Contribution (EFC) number on the front page of
If you are selected for review, realize this is a common
process. Its goal is to maintain an accurate and fair need
analysis. Respond promptly to your school's request for a
Verification Worksheet and
other data. Failure to provide data will result in delays, and
possible cancellation of Federal aid.
Verifications are handled by college student financial aid
offices; don't send documentation to the Federal processor. If
errors are found, the financial aid officer will make necessary
corrections with an electronic process that only takes a few
days. You will receive a new SAR Information Acknowledgement
from the Central Processor so you know what corrections were
made. Corrections could affect financial aid estimates that were
sent to you earlier. If your awards change significantly, the
Financial Aid Office will send you a revised Award Letter.
New for the 2013-14 school year, the Federal processor may
select students for one of the five verification categories:
Standard Verification Group
SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
Child Support Verification Group
Custom Verification Group
Aggregate Verification Group
While most students selected will fall into the Standard
Verification Group, some may be chosen for one of the other four
Financial Aid office will send a Verification Worksheet for your
appropriate verification group to you at your permanent address.
It is extremely important that you submit the information
that is requested in your verification worksheet.
Requesting A Tax Return Transcript
Federal verification guidelines do not consider copies of a
Federal Tax Return as sufficient documentation of income for
Therefore, students and parents who are selected to
verify income and did not use the IRS Data Retrieval process
while completing their FAFSA will need to submit copies of an
IRS Tax Return Transcript.
On The Web-Go
to www.IRS.gov and click on the
“Order a Return or Account Transcript” link.
In Person-Most IRS local offices can issue
you a tax transcript on the spot. To find an office is your
area, go to
select your state.
- The following information is needed to
request a transcript—Social Security Number,
date of birth, and the address on file with the
IRS (normally this will be the address used when
the 2012 tax return was filed).
- It takes up to 2 weeks for IRS income
information to be available for electronic IRS
tax return filers, and up to 8-12 weeks for
paper IRS tax return filers.
- Be sure to request the “IRS Tax Return
Transcript” and not the “IRS Tax Account
- We strongly recommend that you have the
transcript sent to you and then you submit a
copy to our office, and keep a copy for your own
- Be sure to submit all pages of the
- For more assistance in obtaining a
transcript, either go to your local IRS office,
or call 1-800-829-1040 to speak with an IRS
IRS Data Retrieval Tool
For individuals who used the IRS Data Retrieval Tool in FAFSA on
the Web to retrieve and transfer unchanged 2012 IRS income
information into the student’s FAFSA, either on the initial
FAFSA or when making corrections to the FAFSA, the Financial Aid
Office will use this information instead of a tax transcript.
Please note, in some instances, a transcript may still be
If you have not yet used the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, but will
use it to transfer 2012 IRS income information into the
student’s FAFSA instead of requesting a Tax Return Transcript,
please notify the Financial Aid Office once the FAFSA has been
successfully updated with the IRS data.
We have experienced a high volume of students and parents who
believe they have used the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA,
but the FAFSA results received by the school do not indicate a
Therefore, we strongly recommend that you request an IRS Tax
Return Transcript for Verification purposes.
Submitting a transcript with your Verification Worksheet
may decrease your
IRS Tax Extensions
If you or your parent has been granted an extension of time for
completing a 2012 Tax Return and you do not expect the return to
be filed in time for the completion of your verification, please
contact the Financial Aid office for additional information.