IRS Data Retrieval

IRS Data Retrieval

The U.S. Department of Education and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) have worked together to develop a tool to help simplify the completion of the FAFSA form. This tool is called the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Data Retrieval. When you apply for financial aid online, you will be given the option to retrieve and transfer your IRS tax data directly to your financial aid application. To take advantage of this feature, you will need to complete your taxes first.

If you are eligible to use the IRS Data Retrieval, we strongly recommend using the tool for several reasons:

  • It's the easiest way to provide your tax data.
  • It's the best way of ensuring that your FAFSA has accurate tax information.
  • You will not need to provide a copy of your or your parents' tax transcripts to the Financial Aid Office.

Who qualifies to use the IRS Data Retrieval?
Who does not qualify to use the IRS Data Retrieval?
What happens if I am selected for verification?
How to use the IRS Data Retrieval tool when completing the FAFSA.

Who qualifies to use the IRS Data Retrieval?


The IRS Data Retrieval process can be used by applicants who are filing an initial application, renewal application or are making a correction to an initial financial aid application. Applicants and parents must also meet the following criteria:

  • Must have a valid social security number
  • Must have filed a federal tax return
  • Marital status has not changed since December 31, 2013

Who does not qualify to use the IRS Data Retrieval?


Students or parents who meet any of the following criteria will not be able to use the IRS Data Retrieval process when completing their FAFSA on the Web application.

Students and parents who:

  • Have a marital status date of January 1, 2014 or later
  • Indicated they have not already filed a tax return or will not file a tax return
  • Are married but filed a tax return either as head of household or married filing a separate return
  • Have filed an amended tax return
  • Have filed a Puerto Rican or foreign tax return

If the applicant or parent is not able to use the IRS Data Retrieval tool, the college may require you to submit an IRS Tax Return Transcript.

What happens if I am selected for verification?


If you are selected for verification and you or your parent did not use the IRS Data Retrieval tool, the Financial Aid Office is required to request additional tax information.

Students and parents, when asked by the college, are required to either:

  • Correct their FAFSA and use the IRS Data Retrieval tool to transfer their income from the IRS. (See below for steps to complete this process.)
  • Submit a copy of their IRS Tax Return Transcript. Please visit our website for additional information on how to request a tax transcript.

How to use the IRS Data Retrieval tool when completing the FAFSA

  1. Go to www.fafsa.gov and click 'Start a new FAFSA' or click 'Login' to make a correction to an existing FAFSA.

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  2. Log in by entering your personal information.


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  3. For an initial application, click 'Start 2014-2015 FAFSA.'

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  4. If you have already completed the FAFSA, click 'Make FAFSA Corrections.' This will allow you to link your IRS tax information after you have completed your tax return.

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  5. In the Financial Information Section select 'Already completed' from the drop down box (if you have already completed your tax return).

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  6. Select your 2013 tax filing status according to your tax return.
  7. You will be presented with a series of questions based on your tax filing status. If all of your responses are 'No,' enter your PIN number and 'Link to IRS.' If your response is 'Yes' to any of the questions, you may be required to request an IRS Tax Transcript and submit the document to the Financial Aid Processing Center. (You will receive additional information from financial aid if a tax transcript is required). Please Note: The series of questions that are presented are unique based on the user's responses to the demographic questions.


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  8. After you click 'Link to IRS,' your FAFSA information will be saved and a message will display to let you know you are leaving FAFSA on the Web. Click 'OK' and you will be transferred to the IRS website to access your tax information.

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  9. Your first name, last name, social security number and birth date will be prefilled. You will be required to enter your tax filing status and street address exactly as it appears on your tax return. Click 'Submit.'


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  10. The income information from your tax return will be displayed. At the bottom of the page, click 'Transfer Now.' This will return you to the FAFSA on the Web application and populate the answers to the appropriate FAFSA questions.

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  11. A message will appear indicating you have successfully transferred your tax information. It is important that you continue through the remainder of the steps to submit your financial aid application.


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