Verification & Conflicting Information

Each year, approximately 30 percent of financial aid applications are selected for federal verification and an additional amount require additional review due to conflicting information. 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 offer.

Being selected for federal verification or additional review 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.

Federal Verification vs. Conflicting Information

Applications selected for federal verification are chosen by the U.S. Department of Education, while applications that have conflicting information between the FAFSA and CSS Profile are selected for additional review by the University of Denver. In both cases, further documentation is required before we can offer financial aid.

Overview of the Process

If you're selected for federal verification or have conflicting information, we'll notify you via email so you can help us verify that the information you submitted on your financial aid application is accurate.

What to Submit

If you're selected for federal verification or have conflicting information, you'll receive an email from our office indicating what you (and your parents, if applicable) need to submit. Required documents may include:

  • 2021 student and/or parent W-2s
  • 2021 signed student and/or parent tax returns
  • Other forms

If applying for aid for the 2023-24 academic year, tax returns and W-2s should be from 2021. Tax returns must be signed or include tax preparer information. Not all documents will be required of all students. Prospective students should log into www.du.edu/appstatus to view the specific requirements needed to complete their application. Current students should check their Financial Aid Checklist on the MyDU dashboard.

Note: If a tax return is requested, you may be able to utilize the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to update your FAFSA instead of submitting a tax return. To use this tool—which will import your tax return data directly into your application—log in to your FAFSA online under the "Returning User" section. For more detailed instructions, review the steps to using IRS Data Retrieval. Once your FAFSA is correct and you've waited an additional 3-4 business days for processing, use the methods described above to check your application status to see if a tax return is still required.

  • ID Verification & Statement of Educational Purpose

    If this item is included in your financial aid checklist, the Department of Education requires us to certify that the Federal aid received will only be used for educational purposes to pay the cost of attending DU. To do this, you must present a valid government-issued ID (such as a driver's license, other state ID, or passport) and sign the Statement of Educational Purpose form in person in front of a financial aid staff member at DU.

    If you are unable to appear in person at our office,  you must submit an original notarized copy of the Statement of Educational purpose form, along with a copy of the valid government-issued photo ID acknowledged by the notary, via postal mail to our office. Our mailing address is:

    University of Denver
    Attn: Financial Aid
    2197 S. University Blvd.
    Denver, CO 80210.

    US Department of Education regulations prohibit the acceptance of identity documents electronically.

     

    > 2023-24 Statement of Educational Purpose Notary Form (for students applying for the fall of 2023 or later)

    > 2022-23 Statement of Educational Purpose Notary Form (for students applying for the winter, spring or summer of 2023)

When to Submit

Make sure to submit your documents as soon as possible! We're unable to generate your financial aid offer until we complete the review process.

The final deadline for federal verification is the student's last day of attendance during an academic year or June 30 of the academic year, whichever comes first. Students submitting documents after the final deadline will not be eligible for financial aid for that year.

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Required Documentation for Other Scenarios

  • Rejected FAFSA

    If your financial aid checklist indicates that your FAFSA has been rejected, it means the U.S. Department of Education had trouble processing it. Your FAFSA can be on hold for several reasons—the most common reasons are missing signatures or a discrepancy between the name and social security number you reported on the FAFSA and what the Social Security Administration has on record.

    To resolve this issue, log in to www.FAFSA.gov. On the applicable aid year tab, you'll see the reason your FAFSA is on hold and instructions for what to do next.

    If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us or the Federal Student Aid Help Center.

  • C-Flags

    If your financial aid checklist has an item that begins with "C-Flag," it means that the Department of Education has had one or more problems processing your FAFSA. This issue (commonly referred to as "c-flags" or "comment codes") must be resolved before we can generate a financial aid offer for you, and usually means you need to submit additional documentation to our office.

    To view the problem(s) with your FAFSA:

    • Log in to www.FAFSA.gov.
    • Click the "View Student Aid Report" link on the appropriate aid year tab.
    • Select the "FAFSA Data" tab.
    • Review the "what you must do now" section.
       

    If you have any questions about what to submit, please feel free to contact us or the Federal Student Aid Help Center.

  • IRS Verification of Non-Filing Letter

    If your financial aid checklist includes an "IRS Verification of Non-Filing Letter," you must submit a letter from the IRS confirming that you (or your parent) did not file a tax return.

    This letter must come directly from the IRS. To obtain a verification letter online:

    1. Go to www.irs.gov
    2. Click on "Get Your Tax Record" then "Get Transcript Online."
    3. Log in or complete the steps to register.
    4. Be sure to request a Verification of Non-filing Letter.
       

    Please contact us with any questions.

  • IRS Interactive Tax Assistant Confirmation (Filing Status)

    If your financial aid checklist includes an "IRS Interactive Tax Assistant Confirmation (Filing Status)," you (or your parent) must complete the "what is my filing status?" questionnaire on the IRS website and submit the results to our office.

    > Start the IRS Interactive Tax Assistant (ITA)

    Once the questionnaire has been completed, click the "Printer-Friendly" link and submit the printed version of the results to our office.

    Which year should I complete this for?

    • If you're applying for aid for the fall of 2023 or later, complete the ITA for your 2021 tax filing status.
    • If you're applying for aid for the winter, spring, or summer of 2023, complete the ITA for your 2020 tax filing status.
       

    If there are differences between the results of the ITA and the FAFSA, there may be additional documentation required to resolve this discrepancy.

    Please contact us if you have any questions.

  • IRS Interactive Tax Assistant Confirmation (Return Filed)

    If your financial aid checklist includes an "IRS Interactive Tax Assistant Confirmation (Return Filed)," you (or your parent) must complete the "do I need to file a tax return?" questionnaire on the IRS website and submit the results to our office.

    > Start the IRS Interactive Tax Assistant (ITA)

    Once the questionnaire has been completed, click the "Printer-Friendly" link and submit the printed version of the results to our office.

    Which year should I complete this for?

    • If you're applying for aid for the fall of 2023 or later, complete the ITA for a 2021 tax return.
    • If you're applying for aid for the winter, spring, or summer of 2023, complete the ITA for a 2020 tax return.
       

    If there are differences between the results of the ITA and the FAFSA, there may be additional documentation required to resolve this discrepancy.

    Please contact us if you have any questions.

  • Orphan/Ward of the Court Documentation

    If your financial aid checklist includes orphan/ward of the court documentation, it means that you indicated one or more of the following scenarios on your FAFSA, and we must collect additional documentation. Please identify your scenario below and submit the required documentation indicated in the "what to submit" column.

    If none of these circumstances apply to you, you must correct your FAFSA (questions 52-27) online at www.FAFSA.gov and provide parent financial information.

    Scenario What to Submit
    At any time since you turned 13, you had no living parent, even if you are now adopted. Copies of your parent(s) death certificate(s) and your birth certificate
    At any time since you turned 13, you were in foster care, even if you are no longer in foster care. A copy of official court documentation or documentation from your state child welfare agency that shows you were in foster care
    At any time since you turned 13, you were a dependent or ward of the court, even if you are no longer a dependent or ward of the court today. A copy of official court documentation or documentation from your state child welfare agency that shows your status as a ward of the court
    As determined by a court in your state of legal residence, you are or were an emancipated minor. Court ruling granting emancipation
    As determined by a court in your state of legal residence, someone other than your parent or stepparent has legal guardianship of you. A copy of the court documentation confirming your status in a legal guardianship and the effective date(s) of that legal guardianship status as well as a statement from your legal guardian that you were in their care just prior to your 18th birthday
    At any time on or after July 1st, 2021, your high school or school district homeless liaison determined that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or were self-supporting and at risk of being homeless. A copy of the determination documentation from the agency that made this determination (e.g. a letter from your school's McKinney Vento liaison)
    At any time on or after July 1st, 2021, the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development determined that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or at risk of homelessness A copy of the determination documentation from the director of an emergency shelter or transitional housing program funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development confirming this status
    At any time on or after July 1st, 2021, the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program determined that you were an unaccompanied youth who was homeless or were self-supporting and at risk of being homeless A copy of the determination documentation from the director of a runaway or homeless youth basic center or transitional living program confirming this status. If you do not have a determination but meet the criteria, please contact us at finaid@du.edu for guidance. 

     

view of campus

Frequently Asked Questions

  • 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 or institutional review 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're 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.

  • What if my parent(s) were self-employed and/or did not receive W-2s?

    If your parents are self-employed or do not receive W-2s, please contact our office and we can waive this requirement for you.

  • What if my parent(s) were unemployed and/or did not file taxes?

    If you've been selected for Federal Verification and your parent(s) did not file taxes, your parents must submit a verification of non-filing letter to our office. This letter must come directly from the IRS. To obtain a verification of non-filing letter online, go to www.irs.gov and click on "Get My Tax Record". In addition to this letter, your parent must also submit a Non-Tax Filer Statement Form.

  • What's the best way to submit documents to your office?

    If you're a prospective student, the easiest, most secure way to submit documents is to upload them through your application status page. Get step-by-step instructions by viewing our how-to video. You can also email them to finaid@du.edu or fax them to 303-871-2341.

    If you're a current student, we recommend uploading documents through MyDU as it's the most secure. We'll accept documents via email or fax as well.

Contact

 

Financial Aid