A student’s FAFSA may be selected for an accuracy review process called Verification by the US Department of Education or through institutional selection. When selected for Verification, RMU is required to review the FAFSA for accuracy and make necessary corrections.
Why was my FAFSA selected for Verification?
There are a variety of reasons why a FAFSA may be selected, however, more often than not, it’s simply a random selection made by the US Department of Education. Approximately 30% of filed FAFSAs will be randomly selected. Other reasons may include incomplete FAFSA data, conflicting information presented to the Financial Aid Office, and/or estimated information used while completing the FAFSA.
How will I be notified if my FAFSA was selected?
First time, traditional students will receive notice of verification selection in their financial aid package. Continuing and non-traditional students will be sent a notification email to their RMU account with detailed instructions. Reminders will be sent periodically if no response is made.
How do I complete Verification?
If you have been selected for Verification, the following steps will need to be completed.
If you are not eligible to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool you will need to order a SIGNED Federal 1040 Tax Return copy directly from the IRS website www.irs.gov or call 800-829-1040. (IRS 1040 forms will not be accepted).
- Complete and return a Verification Worksheet as specified by the Financial Aid Office.
- Utilize the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA for all Federal tax filers. Click here for instructions. Data retrieval must be completed for both the student and the parent (if dependent). Please be sure the FAFSA is fully re-submitted after this step.
- If you were not required to file a tax return or had $0 earnings, a Verification of Nonfiling Letter must be submitted. To obtain a Verification of Nonfiling Letter, please visit www.irs.gov or use the 4506-T form available on our website. W-2 form(s) will also be required if earnings from work are reported on the FAFSA.
What is the deadline to complete Verification?
It is recommended that students apply for aid and complete Verification requirements in a timely manner, ideally prior to the start of the term. Verification requirements should be submitted within 14 days of the request from the Financial Aid Office or one week prior to the end of the term of enrollment, whichever comes first. Students who do not submit verification requirements within the timeframe specified may forfeit all or a portion of Federal aid eligibility for that term or academic year.
If a student receives a disbursement of Federal aid, prior to the completion of Verification, and the student does not adhere to the timeframe listed above for completion, the disbursement of aid will be treated as an Overaward.
*Federal PELL Grant recipients may have the opportunity to complete the verification process up to 120 days after the last day of the student's enrollment or the annual deadline established by the US Department of Education.
What happens after I submit Verification requirements?
After all requirements have been submitted, the Financial Aid Office will review and compare submitted documents to the previously submitted FAFSA. If errors are found, corrections will be made to the FAFSA. Corrections may impact aid eligibility.
Students can review financial aid updates through their Sentry Secured Services account - RMU Financial Aid Online. An email notification will be generated once the financial aid package is available for view or if there has been a change to previously packaged financial aid.
- You should allow up to 14 days for the review process, potentially more if corrections are necessary.
- Please note, aid disbursements will be held from the student’s account until Verification is complete. To avoid an unintended balance or late fee, it is important that Verification is completed as quickly as possible.