Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships

Verification Information

Verification is a process used to confirm that the information you provided on your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is accurate. Students are selected at random by system edits at the U.S. Department of Education or the university. This process can occur before or after a student is awarded financial aid. If you are selected for verification the UNI Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships will request documents from you to verify the information you reported on your FAFSA. Submitting the requested documents in a timely manner helps to expedite the typical 7-10 day verification process.

How can I avoid delays in verification processing?

Submit all documents as quickly as possible. Make sure your UNI ID number is on each page of submitted documents. Double check that all documents are complete and signed by necessary individuals. Once you have submitted the requested information continue to check your email for subsequent important correspondence. As a reminder, students and parents should never send personal identifiable information, such as Social Security Numbers via email.  

  • Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships, 105 Gilchrist Hall,Cedar Falls, IA  50614-0024

  • Email:

  • Fax: (319) 273-6950                          

What if my Federal Tax Return Transcript was requested?

You can submit your 2016 Tax Return Transcript to our office to fulfill this requirement.

What if I didn't file taxes?

If you are a dependent student and you did not file taxes, please check the appropriate box on the Verification Form.  If your parents did not file taxes, please provide documentation from the IRS dated on or after October 1, 2017, that indicates a 2016 federal income tax return was not filed with the IRS. 

If you are an independent student and you did not file taxes, please provide documentation from the IRS dated on or after October 1, 2017, that indicates a 2016 federal income tax return was not filed with the IRS. 

If you or your parents worked but weren't required to file, please provide us a copy of your 2016 W-2 form.

Will I still get my financial aid if I have been selected for verification?

Your financial aid will not disburse until we receive the requested information and any necessary changes have been processed. When verification is complete you will receive an email communication advising you to review your award notification online and accept/decline any new award.

What is the IRS Data Retrieval?

The IRS Data Retrieval Tool allows applicants who have already filed their federal income tax return to populate some answers on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by transferring data directly from their federal income tax returns. Eligible applicants who choose to use the tool when completing their FAFSA will be temporarily transferred to the IRS web site.  After the applicant has authenticated themselves, the IRS web site will display the data to be transferred to the FAFSA. The applicant may then choose whether or not to transfer the data. If selected for verification, an applicant who has used the IRS Data Retrieval tool to transfer data, in most cases, will not need to turn in a copy of their tax return transcript or tax return to the school. The IRS Data Retrieval Tool can be used 1-2 weeks after the federal income tax return is filed electronically and 6-8 weeks after filing a paper return. The IRS Data Retrieval Tool is available each year to use on the initial FAFSA or corrections to the FAFSA.

What if I file an amended tax return?

If you have filed or will file an amended tax return you will need to provide UNI with a transcript obtained from the IRS that lists tax account information of the tax filer for the 2016 tax year, as well as a signed 2016 amended return (IRS Form 1040X) filed with the IRS. 

How do I request a tax transcript if I have been the victim of identity theft?

Students or parents who have been victims of Identity Theft who are unable to get a tax return transcript through one of the normal ways must contact the Identity Protection Specialization Unit (IPSU) of the IRS at (800)908-4490. After the IPSU authenticates the tax filer’s identity, the tax filer can request that the IRS mail them an alternate paper tax return transcript called the TRDBV (Transcript Database View).  This form is only available by calling this number and will only be mailed to the tax filer.

Once you have received the Tax Return Database View (TRDBV) send it along with a statement signed and dated by the tax filer indicating that they were victims of IRS related identity theft and that the IRS has been made aware of the tax-related identity theft.