Verification Process 

You can now upload your Financial Aid documents securely with OWL FILES

Verification FAQs

Verification is a process to confirm that the information provided on the FAFSA is accurate. Each year, 18% of applicants who fill out the FAFSA are randomly selected for verification by the U.S. Department of Education. FAU reserves the right to select students for verification if there is inconsistency or discrepancy in the information submitted. Verification ensures that the information students and parents report is accurate.  

The verification process allows the University to verify the information on the FAFSA by comparing it with the documentation that was submitted by the student. If changes are necessary, the University will make the changes based on the documentation received from the student and electronically send these changes to the Department of Education for approval. Once the Department of Education approves these changes, the University will offer aid accordingly.

If you are selected for Verification, you will receive an email from the FAU Office of Student Financial Aid detailing the documents needed to start the review. In addition to the Verification Worksheet Form other documentation that may be requested include:

  • IRS Tax Return Transcripts.
  • IRS Non-Filers letter
  • W2 forms.
  • Valid government issued photo ID.
  • For student’s selected for Verification 4 or Verification 5, an identity statement on the form must be either notarized, or our front desk staff will be glad to certify your ID for you.

If your Verification requires that you submit tax information and you cannot use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (IRS DRT), another option is to submit an IRS Tax Return Transcript that you can obtain using the link below, or to submit an IRS 1040. The student's name and Z number should be printed on the top right hand corner of student's, parent's or spouse's tax return transcripts. 

How to Complete the IRS Data Retrieval Process on the FAFSA

Tax Return Transcripts can be obtained either through and mailed to your home, or by submitting a 4506-T form to the IRS.  Victims of Identity theft must obtain a TAX RETURN DATA BASE VIEW FORM by contacting (800) 908-4490. Students considered independent by FAFSA standards, parents, and/or spouses who are not required to file a tax return must provide appropriate income information on the FAU non-filers form provided and must provide a non-filers confirmation letter issued by the IRS.

Completed Verification packets are accepted until September 1, following the aid year.  No aid can be offered until the student submits the Verification Worksheet and Tax Return Transcripts (if applicable), and any discrepancies are resolved. This does not include Bright Futures Scholarships, or any other non-need based institutional or external scholarships, which do not require FAFSA information.  Federal, state or institutional funding will be based on:

The date all Verification requirements are received

The enrollment term(s)

The Expected Family Contribution as calculated by FAFSA

Availability of funds

Once Verification has been completed, the student will received an updated Student Aid Report (SAR) noting any changes. If a student is selected for Verification after receiving aid offers, aid will be adjusted accordingly.

Other information may be requested to meet Federal Verification Regulation requirements. Students may also need to provide proof of citizenship. In this case, you will need to present in person ORIGINAL documents. Copies or mailed citizenship documents will not be accepted.  If you are a distance learner, please contact Nicole Ryan, for instructions.

Verification priority deadline:  All complete Verification packets received on or before 6/25/20XX will be processed in time for the following Fall academic term to begin. Verification packets received after that date will be processed in order of receipt, and aid may be delayed until after the term begins.

It is Highly recommended that all required Financial Aid Documents (not including proof of citizenship) be uploaded securely using OWL FILES.  Please upload each document as a whole file and not as individual pages.  We do not accept emailed or faxed documents.