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Verification is the process established by the U.S. Department of Education to check the accuracy of aid applications. If you were selected for verification, you will need to provide the specific documentation requested based on your dependency status.
Participation in the verification process is not optional. If you do not submit the requested documentation, you will not be eligible to receive federal, state or University need-based financial aid and your parent(s) will not be eligible to apply/receive a Federal Direct PLUS Loan. Failure to meet the verification deadline may result in aid not being reinstated. In addition, any delays in sending documentation may result in you not having your aid by the beginning of the quarter. In this case, it is your obligation to pay the account balance on your student account.
Tax Transcript or IRS Data Retrieval?
Use the IRS Data Retrieval option on the FAFSA if you are eligible. Obtaining a Federal Tax Transcript from the IRS can cause significant delays. Instructions for obtaining a tax return transcript are below.
Federal guidelines allow financial aid offices to substitute the IRS Data Retrieval process for a tax transcript in many cases. IRS Data Retrieval will simplify the verification process by reducing the number of documents you need to submit and will speed the verification of the FAFSA. However, students who use the IRS Data Retrieval and subsequently make changes to the data on the FAFSA must still submit a tax transcript. If you use the IRS Data Retrieval, you should not change any of the data which is pulled from the IRS and input on your aid application. Certain situations may require a tax transcript even after using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.
Access the IRS Data Retrieval Tool
- Access the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
- When answering the FAFSA questions about your (and parent, if applicable) previous year's taxable income select the option to download information from the IRS.
- The FAFSA will be saved and your (and parent, if applicable) will be transferred to the IRS website.
- On the IRS website, enter the requested information.
- Once the IRS has validated your (and parent, if applicable) identification, the IRS tax information will display. Transfer the information from the IRS to the FAFSA.
- Once IRS tax information is transferred, questions that are populated with tax information will be marked with "Transferred from the IRS".
- Do not make any changes to the transferred data.
IRS data is available approximately 2 weeks after filing your taxes electronically and approximately 8 weeks after filing a paper tax return.
NOTE: If you had a change in marital status after the end of the tax year on December 31, are married but file separate tax returns, filed a foreign tax return, or filed an amended return you will not be eligible to use the IRS data retrieval tool and will need to request an IRS Tax Return Transcript.1
To obtain your IRS Tax Return Transcript(s)
There are four ways that you may obtain an IRS Tax Return Transcript.
- Use the Online Services at www.irs.gov to "Order a Tax Return Transcript".
- Call the IRS at (800) 908-9946 and follow the prompts to enter the Social Security number and numbers of the street address as it appears on your tax return. Select "Option 2" to request the transcript.2
- Complete IRS Form 4506T-EZ and mail or fax the form to the IRS. You may download it from www.irs.gov. Once the transcript is received, write your name and your SCU id number on the form and fax it to (408) 554-2154 or mail it to the Financial Aid Office.2
- Visit your local IRS Office. You may obtain your local IRS Office location address at www.irs.gov/localcontacts. Be sure to request a Tax Return Transcript not an Account Transcript
Parent Certification of Non-Filing
If your parent(s) did not and will not file a federal income tax return, they must complete the "Tax Return Non-Filer" section of the Santa Clara University Verification Worksheet.
Student Certification of Non-Filing
If you did not and will not file a federal income tax return, you must complete the "Tax Return Non-Filer" section of the Santa Clara University Verification Worksheet.
- Santa Clara University Verification Worksheet - Dependent
- Santa Clara University Verification Worksheet - Independent
Santa Clara University
Financial Aid Office
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053
1 As with the you, if your parent had a change in marital status after the end of the tax year on December 31, is married but file separate tax returns, filed a foreign tax return, or filed an amended return they will not be eligible to use the IRS data retrieval tool and will need to request an IRS Tax Return Transcript.
2 As you, your parent should follow the same instructions to obtain an IRS Tax Return Transcript.