Charter Oak awards 2013 Community College Transfer Scholarship
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What is Verification?
Verification is a process in which information on a student's Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is reviewed by the College for accuracy. If your FAFSA is selected for verification by the U.S. Department of Education, or by Charter Oak, you will be required to submit documentation to validate the data reported on your FAFSA.
Please do not submit anything to the Office of Financial Aid unless requested to do so.
IRS Data Retrieval Tool through FAFSA on the Web
The Office of Financial Aid requires that all applicants complete or correct FAFSA data using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool. This process allows users to link to the IRS Web site and securely transfer original IRS tax information to their FAFSA. IRS income related information includes: adjusted gross income, U.S. taxes paid, exemptions, and education credits....
In most cases, FAFSA applicants who use the IRS Data Retrieval process to transfer IRS data to their FAFSA will have met the verification requirements for IRS data specific items. This means they will not need to provide an IRS Tax Return Transcript to the Office of Financial Aid as long as IRS data was not subsequently changed (as in the case of filing an amended tax return).
Certain categories of FAFSA applicants will not be able to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool. These include applicants who:
- filed a foreign tax return (including a tax return from Puerto Rico)
- filed an amended tax return
- are married and filed as Married Filing Separately
- are married and filed as Head of Household
- recent tax filers (taxes filed electronically within the last two weeks of FAFSA filing ,taxes filed by mail within the last eight weeks of FAFSA filing)
- had a change in marital status after 12-31
Recent Verification Changes:
As a result of recent legislative changes to the student financial aid programs, some verification requirements have changed for the current award year. Most noteworthy is that copies of federal tax returns will no longer be accepted by the Office of Financial Aid to authenticate FAFSA data -except under a number of limited circumstances.
IRS Tax Transcripts
- Students (and parents of dependent students) who are selected for verification are now required to provide IRS Tax Return Transcripts to the Office of Financial Aid.
- Applicants who change IRS data (by filing an amended tax return) must also provide signed copies of their original tax return, IRS Form 1040X (along with a new Form 1040) to the Office of Financial Aid.
Tax transcripts (Form 4506-T) are provided free of charge by the IRS and can be ordered online.
Before ordering your transcript, please read the following information:
- Order your transcript early enough to allow for delays at the IRS. The IRS does not provide "rush" service and orders are processed on a first come, first served basis.
- Make sure the taxpayer name in line 1a is an exact match to the name used on the tax return.
- For a joint return, make sure spouse's name is listed in line 2a and is an exact match to the name used on the tax return.
- Social security numbers can be entered in two formats. Either 123-45-6789 or 1213456789.
- Current name and address information must be listed in line 3. If there has been a name change from what was listed in line 1 or 2, enter it here.
- Complete line 4 only if the address used to file taxes (for the tax year requested) is different from the current address listed in box 3.
- Enter the tax form number in line 6 (1040, 1040A,1040EZ....).
- Check box 6a to order your Return Transcript.
- Check box 6c to order a Record of Account (only if requested to do so by the Office of Financial Aid).
- Check box 7 for verification of Nonfiling status.
- In line 9 enter the year or period requested. For example, 12-31-2012 or 2012.
- Sign and date the form.
Victims of Identity Theft
You will not be able to obtain an IRS Tax Return Transcript either online or by phone if you are a tax filer who has been the victim of identity theft. For purposes of verification in these cases only, the College will accept a signed copy of the paper IRS income tax return that was filed along with a signed copy of IRS Form 14039 (Identity Theft Affidavit).
Additional Requests for Information
Certain types of untaxed income (child support, worker's compensation, disability) are not reflected in IRS data. Therefore, additional documentation may be requested by the Office of Financial Aid for verification of untaxed income. This may include, but is not limited to, collection of W-2 forms for non-filers who indicate they have income from work, child support payments received, and payments made to tax-deferred pension and savings plans.
Child support payments made in 2012 are subject to verification.
Benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Program (SNAP) received in 2011 or 2012 are subject to verification.
The Office of Financial Aid is also responsible for resolving information that it believes to be discrepant or inaccurate and may request supporting documentation to clear data conflicts.
*If conflicting information is discovered after disbursing aid, the College is required to reconcile the differences and recalculate the student's EFC. If there is an overaward, the student will be required to repay any excess funds. If a student is not longer enrolled, they will owe a Title IV overpayment and the College will notify the U.S. Department of Education of the overpayment.