What is Verification?
Verification is a process that confirms the accuracy of information reported on the FAFSA. The Federal Government randomly selects approximately 30% of FAFSA applications for Verification. We are required to make corrections to Federal and State aid if there are differences between what was reported on the FAFSA and the information submitted through the Verification process. Once Verification is complete, we will send notification to your Zagmail and notify you of any changes to your award.
How will I know if I've been selected for Verification?
We will notify you and advise you of the next steps via email if you have been selected for Verification. Your Student Aid Report (SAR) confirmation email will also show if you were selected for Verification.
How do I complete the Verification Form?
It is very important to complete the form in its entirety as incomplete forms will be returned and have to be resubmitted.
Section 1: Household Information
In section 1 you will need to first determine if you are a dependent or independent student.
- Dependent Students are defined as: A student who does not meet any of the criteria for an independent student. An independent student is one of the following: at least 24 years old, married, a graduate or professional student, a veteran, a member of the armed forces, an orphan, a ward of the court, someone with legal dependents other than a spouse, an emancipated minor or someone who is homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. Nearly all undergraduates are considered dependent students.
- Independent Students are: one of the following: at least 24 years old, married, a graduate or professional student, a veteran, a member of the armed forces, an orphan, a ward of the court, or someone with legal dependents other than a spouse, an emancipated minor or someone who is homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. Get additional information to determine your dependency status.
Once you have listed household members, you will need to include their age, relationship to you, and their college enrollment status (if applicable).
Dependent Student household members include:
- Parent(s)/Step-parent. This would be the Parent(s) listed on the FAFSA. If divorced, then the Parent(s) and Step-parent's household that the student resides with over half of the time
- Siblings that reside in the Parent(s) household
- Others who now live in the Parent's household, and whom rely on the Parent(s) for more than half of their support from July 1st of the current year through June 30th of the next year
Independent Student household members include:
- Student's spouse (if applicable)
- Children, if the children rely on you and/or your spouse for more than half of their support from July 1st of the current year through June 30th of the next year
- Others who now reside in your household and who rely on you and/or your spouse for more than half of their support from July 1st of the current year through June 30th of the next year
Section 2: Student Income
This section is to assess student income. There are three options for students to select from:
- If the student worked and filed a tax return, then they would check the first box. If the student has already used the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) on the FAFSA to transfer their tax information, then no further action is required and they can proceed to section 3. If the student filed taxes, but did not use the IRS DRT on their FAFSA. Please follow the IRS DRT directions below. If the student is ineligible to use the IRS DRT then the student must send either an IRS Tax return Transcript or a signed copy of their 1040.
- The student did not work and has no income to report - check the box and proceed to section 3
- The student had income, but was not required to file a IRS tax return they would then check box 3. Fill in the name of the employer, earnings, and attach the student's W-2 when submitting the Verification form
Section 3: Parent(s) Income
This section is to assess parent income information. It is similar to the student info in Section 2 with some differences. There are three options to select from.
- If the Parent(s) (including step-parent) filed a tax return, they would check the first box. If the parent tax return information was already submitted on the FAFSA through the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) then no further action is required and all parties can proceed to the signature portion of the form (ink signatures are required). If the parent(s) did not use the IRS DRT on the FAFSA, please follow the IRS DRT instructions below. If the parent(s) are ineligible to use the IRS DRT then thet must send either an IRS Tax return Transcript or a signed copy of their 1040.
- If the parent(s) have zero income and are not required to file a tax return they will check box two. Parent(s) who select this option must obtain a Verification of IRS Non-Filing Letter and submit it with the Verification form.
- If the parent(s) have income but are not required to file a tax return they will check the third box, submit a Verification of IRS Non-Filing Letter, and attach copies of their W-2 when submitting the verification form
Using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA
Call the FAFSA hotline at 800-433-3243 if you need assistance using the FAFSA IRS DRT.
The IRS Data Retrieval Tool (IRS DRT) Electronically Transfers Your Federal Tax Return Information Into Your FAFSA Form.
- EASY: Transfer info with the click of a button.
- FAST: Instantly retrieve your information.
- ACCURATE: Correctly fill in your information.
- Log in to your current FAFSA form or start a new application at fafsa.gov.
- In the finances section of the online form, you will see a “Link to IRS” button if you are eligible to use the IRS DRT.
- Click the “Link to IRS” button and log in with your FSA ID to be transferred to the IRS to retrieve your info.
- Once at the IRS site, enter your information exactly as it appears on your federal income tax return and click the “Submit” button.
- Check the “Transfer My Tax Information into the FAFSA form” box, and click the “Transfer Now” button.
- You will know that your federal tax return information has been successfully transferred because the words “Transferred from the IRS” will display in place of the IRS information in your FAFSA form.
For your protection, your tax information will not be displayed on either the IRS site or fafsa.gov.
The IRS DRT can be used by both students and parents. To learn more about the IRS DRT, visit StudentAid.gov/irsdrt.
When the form is complete in its entirety sign & date the form (ink signatures required) and submit the form.
We're here to help you navigate through the Verification process and you can reach us by phone at: 509-313-6582, by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org or drop by our office in lower Crosby.
Ready to Submit your Verification?
You can submit the documents in person, we are located in the lower level of Crosby and available weekdays 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM, send it via email to: email@example.com, by fax to: 509-313-5816, or use our Secure Document Upload.