Each year, approximately 30% of financial aid applications are selected for federal verification. As a result, you'll need to provide additional documentation so we can ensure the information provided on your financial aid application is accurate. If your file is selected, you must complete the process before we can provide you with a financial aid award letter.
Being selected for federal verification is not a reason to panic as long as you filled out your financial aid application accurately and to the best of your abilities. Below, you'll find instructions on how to proceed if you're selected, along with answers to several of our most frequently asked questions.
What happens if I'm selected for verification?
If you're selected for verification, we must verify that the information you submitted on your FAFSA is accurate. We will notify you via email if you're selected, and we cannot generate a financial aid award for you until the verification process is complete.
However, if you do not wish to apply for work-study, verification is not required. It's also not required if you plan to take part only in the Grad PLUS or Unsubsidized loan programs, or if you are certain you will not be attending DU within the academic year. Contact us if you are selected for verification and any of these circumstances apply.
What documents do I need to submit?
If selected for verification, you will receive an email from our office indicating you (and your spouse, if applicable) must submit one or more of the following items:
- Federal Verification Worksheet
- Tax return transcript (obtained directly from the IRS)
Not all documents will be required of all students, and you may be able to utilize the IRS data retrieval tool to update your FAFSA instead of submitting a tax return transcript. In addition to reviewing the email sent from our office, you can view outstanding requirements by logging into PioneerWeb.
How do I get my tax return transcript from the IRS?
If you are unable to use IRS Data Retrieval to update your FAFSA, you can request a copy of your tax return transcript through the IRS website. To do so, go to www.irs.gov and click on "Get Your Tax Record." Learn more with our how-to guide.
If you're having trouble ordering your tax return transcript online, you can call 1-800-908-9946 to request a copy be mailed to you.
What's the deadline to submit verification documents?
As soon as possible! The sooner requested documents are submitted, the sooner we'll be able to generate your award package.
The final deadline for verification is the student's last day of attendance during an academic year or June 30 of the academic year, whichever is first. Students submitting documents after the final deadline will not be eligible for financial aid for that year.
What happens if the verification process finds an error in my financial aid application?
If verification documents reveal inaccuracies in your FAFSA, a member of our office will correct your application electronically. If and when those corrections are made, the FAFSA processor will send an email to the address listed on the FAFSA indicating a change has been made to the file.
If incomplete or inadequate verification documents are submitted, we'll notify you of discrepancies by email and provide instructions on how to correct them.
Federal verification may result in a change to your financial aid award. If so, we will notify you of any changes. We encourage you to contact us for an explanation of corrections and amended awards.
Should our review reveal you may have engaged in fraud or other criminal misconduct in connection with your application, we are required to report this information to the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Education for investigation. Examples of such information include (but are not limited to) false claims of independent student status, false claims of citizenship, use of false identities, forgery of signatures or certificates, and false statements of income.
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