What is Verification?
Verification is the process by which Eastern Wyoming College (EWC) confirms the accuracy of the data reported on a student’s Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA federal processor selects the student (FAFSA) applications for which the data submitted must be verified.
The federal processor applies a series of edit checks, which are prescribed by federal financial aid regulations, to each FAFSA. The edit checks may result in an application being selected for verification. In addition, the federal processor randomly selects for verification a percentage of all financial aid applications.
Students selected for verification will be required to submit additional documentation beyond the FAFSA and EWC admissions documents.
Students can view required documents in their MyEWC Self-Service.
Per federal regulations, the EWC Financial Aid Office:
- Must verify all students selected for verification by the federal processor. If there is an asterisk next to the EFC figure on the top right corner of your Student Aid Report (SAR), your SAR has been selected for verification.
- May also exercise the right to select additional students for verification at any time.
- Will notify students via email if they are selected for verification and request the submission of appropriate documentation. This information will also be available to the student in their MyEWC Self-Service.
If discrepancies are discovered during verification, the Financial Aid Office may require additional information or documents. Any discrepancies that must be corrected may change your eligibility for financial aid as estimated on your SAR.
What information will be verified?
Schools are required to verify the following data elements:
- Household size (number of people in your household)
- Number in college (number of household members attending a post secondary educational institution at least half-time)
- Adjusted gross income (AGI) or income earned from work if income is below minimum required for income tax filing
- U.S. Income Tax Paid for the base year (e.g., for 2023-2024, the base year is 2021)
- Certain untaxed income and benefits for the base year
- Untaxed IRA distributions
- Untaxed pensions
- Education credits
- IRA deductions
- Tax exempt interest
In addition to these basic verification requirements, students may be asked to verify any other data item reported on the FAFSA.
What documentation will I have to submit?
Dependent students are required to submit an EWC Dependent Verification Worksheet and a form of income verification (described on the worksheet and below) for the fiscal year on which the FAFSA was based. (Example: A student selected for verification in 2023-2024 would submit information from the 2021 tax year.)
Independent students are required to submit an EWC Independent Verification Worksheet and a form of income verification (described on the worksheet and below) for the fiscal year. If an independent student was married at the time he/she signed their FAFSA and did not file a joint tax return, the student must also submit income verification for his/her spouse.
The EWC Federal Verification Worksheet, federal tax transcripts, and requested documents should be forwarded to the EWC Financial Aid Office as soon as possible after they are requested. Students will not be awarded federal financial aid until the verification process has been completed.
The EWC Financial Aid Office may have to request additional information to resolve conflicting information and/or error flags listed on the processed FAFSA. Additional documents may include evidence of child support received or paid, W2 forms, signed statements regarding family and living situations, and more.
Can my financial aid change as a result of verification?
Financial aid awards are based on the information provided on your FAFSA. Federal programs such as the Pell Grant, SEOG Grant, and Direct Federal Loan have strict eligibility requirements. If the data reported on verification documents differs from the information reported on the student’s FAFSA, the student’s eligibility for these programs may be affected.
What is the verification deadline?
The verification review process can take up to 30 days. Students are advised to submit the requested documentation as soon as possible after receiving notice that your application was selected for review. All information must be received and reviewed before we can determine your eligibility for federal financial aid and your file may be considered inactive if our office does not receive a response within 60 days. If you, your spouse or your parent refuse to submit the required documentation, your eligibility for federal financial aid may be forfeited. Federal funds will not be disbursed until the verification process is complete.
In order for EWC’s Financial Aid Office to be able to submit any required corrections to the Central Processing System (CPS), a student MUST submit all required documentation by the earlier of 120 days after his/her last date of enrollment or September 1 following the academic year for which he/she is requesting aid (e.g., September 1, 2024 for the 2023-2024 academic year).