Financial Aid Verification
Each year, the federal government randomly selects around 26% of FAFSAs for a process called verification. This primarily involves looking for typographic errors (typos) common on FAFSAs, but the specific questions asked by our financial aid officers will vary from student to student. Once a student is selected for this process, verification must be completed before any federal financial aid may be awarded.
Common documents in the verification process include:
- A completed copy of either the Dependent Verification Worksheet or the Independent Verification Worksheet
- A copy of your and your parent(s) federal Tax Return or Transcript. Transcripts may be requested for free from https://www.irs.gov/individuals/get-transcript.
- If you did not file a tax return, a Verification of Non-Filing Letter from the IRS, unless you are a dependent student (your parents are listed on your FAFSA). Letters of non-filing may also be requested for free from https://www.irs.gov/individuals/get-transcript.
- Copies of all your and your parent(s) W-2’s, if you are a dependent student
Students who are selected for verification will be notified of this by the financial aid office and be provided with blank forms and other information. Students will be contacted through the email address(es) listed on their FAFSA.
The time and effort students spend on the verification process can be reduced significantly by remembering to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool built into the FAFSA each year. You may read more at https://studentaid.gov/help/how-use-irs-drt.