When you submit the FAFSA, the federal government may select your financial aid application for a process called “verification.”
This means the Department of Education requires our office to determine the accuracy of the information provided on your FAFSA by double-checking some of your answers.
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If you are selected for verification, we will notify you at your student email and the personal email you listed on the FAFSA. You can also check your FAFSA status at any time by visiting the TC Financial Aid Portal below.
If all of your verification documents are turned in prior to the priority deadline, the Financial Aid Office guarantees that your classes will be held until we can complete the verification process to finalize your aid. If you turn in any documents after the priority deadline, we can make no such guarantee, and you must make payment arrangements with the Business Office to secure your classes. Once your verification process is completed and you receive a financial aid award, you can use the financial aid funds to pay yourself back for your tuition expenses.
Verification requirements can vary widely from person to person depending on what information the federal government asks us to double-check. Some students merely need to turn in a verification worksheet confirming the number of people in their household or submit a valid government photo ID. In other cases, students may need to submit full tax information for the previous year. All verification requirements will be viewable on your myTC student account once your FAFSA has been received by the college. Any items you need to turn in will show as a red flag under the top-center area of the Financial Aid tab.
Please note that if you are required to submit tax information, the IRS 1040 (A/EZ) form that you submit to the government is not acceptable documentation according to federal financial aid regulations. Instead, you must submit a tax return transcript (which is the version of your tax form the IRS can give back to you once your taxes have been processed) or complete the IRS Data Retrieval.
The IRS Data Retrieval is a feature of FAFSA on the web, which links your FAFSA with your already filed federal tax information through the IRS.
You may update your FAFSA by linking to your federal taxes and pulling your tax data directly from the IRS ‘auto-filling” the tax portion of your FAFSA. Taxes submitted electronically require 2-3 weeks before they can be requested. If they were submitted by paper, they will require up to 8 weeks.
If you do not wish to complete the IRS Data retrieval and are required for verification, you must contact the IRS to request a copy of student and/or parent’s IRS tax transcript to provide to The Office of Financial Aid (See below, “Requesting an IRS transcript”).
- Log on to your FAFSA application at www.studentaid.gov/fafsa.
- When you get to the Financial Information tab, answer “Already Completed” if you have filed your taxes for the previous calendar year.
- The FAFSA will list several tax-filing scenarios that might prevent you from using the IRS Data Retrieval. If you filed your taxes “recently” (fewer than 2 weeks ago), you may need to wait until the IRS Data Retrieval is available to you. Also, if you owe the IRS any payment of taxes, the IRS Data Retrieval will not be available to you until a few weeks after your payment has been received by the IRS.
If you can answer “No” to all questions listed in this section, you should be able to complete the IRS Data Retrieval. Enter your FAFSA pin number. You will be alerted that you are temporarily leaving the FAFSA on the Web. Click “OK.”
- Once you are redirected to the IRS web site, you will get another warning notification reminding you that this is an official government web site not to be used for unethical purposes. Click “OK” again.
- Enter your filing status and address information. NOTE: The Data Retrieval tool is not the smartest program in the world when it comes to recognizing address abbreviations, so be very careful to type your address exactly as it appears on your IRS 1040 tax form! For instance, if the address on the tax return read “101 N. Walnut St.” but you typed “101 N. Walnut Street” or “101 North Walnut St.” into this website, the search tool may not pick it up. Three incorrect tries will return you to the Financial Tab of the FAFSA, but you may log in and try again as many times as you wish.
- Once the Data Retrieval’s search function has located your IRS account, it will show you a confirmation screen. Check the box that says “Transfer My Information” and then click “Transfer Now.” This will return you to the FAFSA application, but with relevant blanks filled in for you by the IRS web site.
- Continue to complete any blank fields on your FAFSA, but DO NOT change any value that was “Transferred from the IRS.” If you change any field with that label, it will remove the “official” nature of the data transfer and may result in you having to turn in a paper tax return transcript later on. Continue to the last page, where you (and a parent) will sign and submit your FAFSA application using your pin number(s).
Congratulations, you successfully used the IRS Data Retrieval Tool!
Download a pdf version of IRS Data Retrieval Instructions
- On the IRS website choose “Get Transcript of Your Tax Records”.
- Select “Get Transcript by MAIL” and follow the prompts.
- Alternately, call 1-800-908-9946 to request a transcript or submit a written form using the IRS form 4506T-EZ.
- Enter your information and request a “Return Transcript” for the proper year. Note: Do NOT select “Account Transcript”.
- Once you receive your transcript (within 5 to 10 days), submit it to the Office of Financial Aid for verification.
If you cannot complete Step 1 (above), you may request an IRS transcript and submit it to the Financial Aid Office. You must request an IRS transcript if:
- You (or your parent) did not use the IRS Data Retrieval Process either at initial FAFSA filing or through subsequent corrections.
- You changed information after using the IRS Data retrieval process.
- Your tax status is “Married, filing separately.”
- Your parents filed separate tax returns.
- You (or your parent) had a change in marital status after the end of the tax year on December 31.
- You (or your parent) filed an amended tax return.
- You filed taxes outside the U.S.
We encourage you to visit the TC Financial Aid Portal to view and download the forms relevant to your FAFSA, since most students are not required to turn in all forms. However, you may click below to view, print, or download blank FAFSA verification forms sometimes required of students.
If you are not an eligible citizen and therefore cannot complete an application for federal financial aid, you may qualify for assistance from the state of Texas. Please complete the following application, attach all required documents, and return to the Financial Aid Office.
Si no es ciudadano elegible y por lo tanto no puede completar una solicitud para ayuda financiera federal, puede calificar para asistencia en el estado de Texas.
Por favor llene la siguiente solicitud, adjuntar todos los documentos requeridos y volver a la oficina de ayuda financiera.