Federal Verification Process
Completion of the federal verification process ensures that the information students and their families reported on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is accurate. As part of this process, the Office of Student Financial Assistance (OSFA) may ask the student and his or her family to provide additional information. Individuals are typically selected for verification by the federal processor of the FAFSA. The OSFA also reserves the right to select individuals for the verification process under certain conditions such as when a student submits a Professional Judgment Appeal Form. Federal regulations do not allow students to avoid verification by simply choosing not to accept offered need-based federal financial aid, such as a Federal Direct Subsidized Loan.
If applicants are selected to complete the federal verification process, the OSFA will inform students of the necessary documentation required. The required documentation will be listed in the student's “To Do List” within the Student Center in iSIS. Typically, a student selected for verification will need to provide, at minimum, a completed Dependent Verification Form or Independent Verification Form. Required verification documentation will vary depending upon the unique information provided on the student's FAFSA.
IRS Data Retrieval Tool simplifies the federal verification process
The U.S. Department of Education highly encourages all FAFSA applicants to utilize the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (IRSDRT) that is available within the FAFSA online application. The IRSDRT allows students and parents, who have already submitted their federal tax returns to electronically transfer their tax information from the IRS to their FAFSA. If students and/or parents utilize the IRS Data Retrieval Tool without making any changes, the amount of documentation requested for the verification process by the OSFA may be minimized.
Students and/or parents follow these instructions to utilize the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to transfer IRS tax data into the FAFSA.
Students and/or parents follow these instructions to request an IRS Tax Return Transcript.