What is Verification?
The Department of Education requires schools to collect documentation to check the accuracy of the FAFSA information. Tax and income information is primarily reviewed, though the Department of Education may ask for other information as well. If selected, the verification process must be completed before financial aid can be awarded. If you are selected for verification, you are not alone! About 30% of all FAFSA filers are selected for the verification process.
Please note, if you make an adjustment and re-submit your FAFSA, you might be selected even if you were not originally. If your FAFSA is selected for verification after you have been awarded, you have 45 days to complete verification. If the process is not completed within the 45-day window, your aid must be canceled, which may result in a balance owed to the university. When selected for verification, the student will be notified through their ASU e-mail. The student will be directed to the Financial Aid tab within their AppalNet Account to review a list of the documents that must be submitted to the Office of Student Financial Aid before financial aid can be awarded.
The IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT) is available through the FAFSA! We highly recommend using this secure method to import your tax information from the IRS into your FAFSA application.
Using DRT speeds up the verification process and can eliminate the need for multiple documents.
Depending on how you or your parents filed taxes, the IRS DRT may not be an option. If you are selected for verification and ineligible to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, you may also submit a tax RETURN transcript.
There are four options for obtaining a tax RETURN transcript.
- You can get your free transcripts immediately online.
- Go to IRS.gov and use the Get Transcript tool.
- You can also get them by phone.
- Call 800-908-9946 and follow the prompts.
- Using the mobile app.
- Download the IRS2Go mobile phone app on your smartphone and follow the instructions.
- You can receive transcripts by mail or by fax (within five to 10 days from the time IRS receives your request).
- Complete Form 4506T-EZ and follow the instructions
How to Complete Verification:
The Office of Student Financial Aid is pleased to announce we use electronic forms for most of verification.
The Office of Student Financial Aid uses an online verification platform. We started using this in Fall 2019. Online verification will allow you to view and complete your financial aid forms electronically. No more printing and signing then scanning to email, faxing, or mailing documents.
In order to E-Sign your forms, both the student and parent must be eligible and opt-in to E-Sign. If a parent Social Security Number is not entered on the FAFSA, the parent will not be eligible to E-Sign. If one party chooses not to E-Sign, then the student and parent need to add their hand-written signature to the form and upload to StudentForms. Typed signatures are not accepted.
- In order to protect your sensitive information, we strongly discourage emailing or faxing verification documents. Please upload your documents through StudentForms.
- We are accepting E-Signatures when forms are completed through StudentForms.
- In order to E-Sign your forms, both the student and parent must be eligible and opt-in to E-Sign. If a parent Social Security Number is not entered on the FAFSA, the parent will not be eligible to E-Sign. If one party chooses not to E-Sign, then the student and parent need to add their hand-written signature to the form and upload to StudentForms. Typed signatures cannot be accepted due to auditing requirements.
- Occasionally one piece of information will trigger a secondary requirement. When this happens, you will receive notice immediately through StudentForms.
- Text message updates on your verification status are available. Be sure to opt-in when creating your account!
Using Student Forms:
To set up your StudentForms account through AppalNet, follow these instructions.
If you are a student selected for verification, see the tutorial linked here.
Are you a parent working with your student to sign and submit documents? Please click here for information.
Important Tips for Completing the Verification Process
- Complete all requested forms in full. Also remember to hit submit once you have completed all required items.
- Be sure to sign any copies of taxes that are submitted.
- Submitting your FAFSA early and completing verification is required before aid can be awarded. The FAFSA for the upcoming academic year opens annually on October 1st.
- During peak periods, please allow extra time for processing your verification documents.
- Once verification begins, you may be asked to submit additional documentation. If this occurs, an email will be sent to the student's ASU email account and all requested documents can be viewed on the student's AppalNet account.