Some students who apply for financial aid will be selected for verification by the federal processor. This federally mandated verification process uses documentation to confirm that the information provided on your FAFSA is correct. It also ensures that you receive all the federal financial aid to which you are entitled.
How will I know if I am selected for verification?
If you are selected for verification by the federal processor, there will be an asterisk next to your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) on your Student Aid Report (SAR). You will also be informed of having been selected for verification in the SAR Acknowledgement letter. You can view your SAR online or view a sample SAR (PDF).
If you are selected for verification when you file your FAFSA, you will be notified by the WPI Office of Student Aid & Financial Literacy of any additional documentation that is required.
Why was I selected for verification?
Reasons vary; it may be that your FAFSA was incomplete or contains estimated or inconsistent information. You may have also been chosen randomly. Verification is a federal regulation. Students selected for verification are not being punished; rather verification prevents ineligible students from receiving aid by reporting false information and ensures that eligible students receive all the aid for which they qualify. WPI may also choose to select students for verification to ensure accuracy in financial aid offerings. If this is the case, the Office of Student Aid & Financial Literacy will reach out to the student and/or parent(s) directly.
If I am selected for verification, am I required to submit additional documentation?
Yes. Participation in the verification process is required if the student received any need based federal funding in their financial aid award including loans and work study. If a student who is selected does not submit the required documentation by the established deadline, he or she will not be eligible to receive federal financial aid as a WPI student, and all pending federal student aid credits will be canceled.
Should the verified financial information differ significantly from the original information provided on the FAFSA, your aid may be adjusted, in which case you will be notified within two weeks.
How will I know what additional documentation is required for verification, and where and when to send it?
If your SAR indicates you were selected for verification you and your parent(s) will be required to provide supporting documents to the WPI Office of Student Aid & Financial Literacy. Your financial aid portal will show the required documents and the office will email you (using your WPI email address) to request the documentation. Check your WPI email often.
The Department of Education has changed the verification process. As a result, depending on certain financial indicators, the category of verification you were selected for and the specific documentation required will vary. You will receive an email from the WPI Office of Student Aid & Financial Literacy outlining your requirements. Below is a breakdown of each verification category.
Category: Standard Verification or V1
What is required?
- For tax filers, successfully utilize the IRS’s Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA (preferred option). Step-by- step instructions for using this tool are available or for those that cannot use the Data Retrieval Tool please provide a signed copy of your 2021 federal tax return for parent(s) and student who filed taxes.
- For Independent students and parents who did not, and were not required to file taxes, a 2021 "Verification of Non-Filing Letter" must be obtained from the IRS at this website tax return transcript.
- For non-tax filers, provide a copy of 2021 W-2 statement(s) for the parent(s) or student that did not file taxes.
- A signed and dated 2023-2024 Verification Worksheet which can be found at the bottom of our Forms page.
Category: Custom Verification or V4
What is required?
- You must appear in person (at the Office of Student Aid & Financial Literacy, Bartlett Center), present a valid and unexpired government-issued photo ID, and a
(to be submitted in person upon your arrival on campus).
Category: Aggregate Verification or V5
What is required?
- Students must fulfill requirements of categories V1 and V4 explained above
To avoid delays, all verification documents should be mailed or faxed to our office:
WPI Office of Student Aid & Financial Literacy
100 Institute Road
Worcester MA 01609
or FAX 508-831-5039
If the federal processor selects your application for verification, you do not have to wait for the Office of Student Aid & Financial Literacy to request additional documentation from you. It is your responsibility to review your SAR, which will list the specific verification category you were selected for, to determine if you are selected and submit additional documentation to the Office of Student Aid & Financial Literacy by the first day of class of the first semester you are entering for that academic year or within one month of the date of the request, whichever is later. You may view your requested documents online in your financial aid portal
VICTIMS OF IRS IDENTITY THEFT
Individuals who are victims of IRS tax-related identity theft must submit a Tax Return DataBase View (TRDBV) transcript obtained from the IRS and a statement signed and dated by the tax filer indicating that they were victims of IRS tax-related identity theft and that the IRS has been made aware of the tax-related identity theft. Tax filers may obtain a TRDBV transcript and inform the IRS of the tax-related identity theft by calling the IRS’s Identity Protection Specialized Unit (IPSU) at 1.800.908.4490.
AMENDED TAX RETURNS
Individuals who amended their federal income tax return must submit a tax return transcript and a signed copy of the IRS Form 1040X that was filed with the IRS.
INFORMATION REGARDING INCOME INFORMATION FOR NON-IRS TAX FILERS
To verify income information, tax filers who filed an income tax return with a taxing authority in a U.S. territory (Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands) or commonwealth (Puerto Rico and the Northern Mariana Islands) or with a foreign government, must submit a copy of a transcript of their tax information to the institution if a transcript is available at no charge from that jurisdiction’s taxing authority. A signed copy of the applicable income tax return that was filed with the taxing authority is only acceptable if tax filers are unable to obtain a free copy of a transcript of their tax information.