Ferris State University Big Rapids MI College

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Step One - Verification Form

If you were selected for the verification process, please print, complete and return the appropriate Verification Form from the list below. Please note that forms are aid year specific. Please make sure you choose the form for the appropriate aid year.

2017-2018 Forms (Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Summer 2018)

Step Two - Tax Documentation

Tax Return Transcripts or Signed Copies of Federal 1040 Tax Returns

In addition to the verification form, tax data must be provided from the Internal Revenue Service. 

As of March 3, 2017, the IRS Data Retrieval option is down for an indefinite period of time. 

Effective April 24, 2017, Tax Return Transcripts OR Signed copies of 2015 Federal Tax Returns may be submitted for purposes of verification.  This option is a temporary regulatory change that is effective beginning April 24, 2017, and is in effect only until the IRS Data Retrieval Tool is restored. 

Instructions for Obtaining Tax Return Transcripts

Additional Documentation

Occasionally we must request additional documentation from you after we receive your verification documents due to discrepancies that arise once your file is reviewed. We will notify you if any additional documentation is required. Again, it is important to submit all requested information as quickly as possible to prevent the loss of some forms of aid.

Frequently Asked Verification Questions

What is verification?

Approximately 30% of all students who complete a Free Application For Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) are selected by the federal processor for a process called VERIFICATION. In addition to the files selected by the federal processor, the Financial Aid Office may select a student's file for the verification process in order to clear up discrepant information. Please note that in most cases, being selected for verification is simply a routine process, you are not being accused of providing fraudulent information.

How do I identify my "custodial parent(s)"?

  • If your biological parents live together, even if they were never married, you must include information about both parents.
  • If your parents are divorced or separated, your custodial parent is the parent that you lived with more during the past 12 months.
  • If your custodial parent is remarried, you must include your stepparent's information.
  • If your parent's situation is not described above and you are uncertain whose information should have been reported on the FAFSA, please contact the Financial Aid Office for clarification.

How do I know if I was selected for verification?

You will receive a Student Aid Report from the federal processor once your FAFSA has been processed. It will be sent to you by mail or via email depending on the preferred method of contact you selected when you filed your FAFSA. If you were selected for the verification process by the federal processor, there will be a message on your Student Aid Report advising you that you were selected and to contact your Financial Aid Office for more information.

If not selected for verification, do I need to do anything else?

If you are not selected for the verification process, your file is considered complete as soon as your FAFSA data is received by the Financial Aid Office in a valid status. If your FAFSA has been rejected by the federal processor, you will be required to resolve the issues. FAFSAs may be rejected for a number of reasons including, but not limited to the following: missing applicant or parent signatures; name and/or social security number mismatches; citizenship documentation issues; selective service registration issues. FAFSA rejections must be resolved before students are considered eligible for financial aid. The Financial Aid Office will request additional information from you to help resolve FAFSA rejects. It is essential that all requested documentation be submitted as quickly as possible. Failure to provide requested documentation in a timely manner could result in a loss of some forms of aid.

How do I complete verification?

When a student's file is selected for verification, the Financial Aid Office will compare federal tax data and information reported on a verification form to the data submitted on the FAFSA. If all of the information matches, the file will be considered complete. If there are any discrepancies, the Financial Aid Office will electronically submit corrections to the federal processor. When the corrections are acknowledged by the federal processor, the student's file will be considered complete.

Is there a verification deadline?

To be considered for financial aid for the 2017-2018 academic year, students must submit documentation no later than 30 days after the last date of enrollment or August 30, 2018, whichever is earlier.

Financial Aid


Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid

1201 S. State Street, CSS101
Big Rapids, Michigan 49307

(231) 591-2110
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