University of Southern Indiana

Acceptable Tax Documentation

Tax Filers

The IRS Data Retrieval Tool is currently experiencing technical difficulties, until it is back up and running you will need to request the IRS Tax Return Transcript. Instructions may be found below. 

*NEW Acceptable Tax Documents for 2017-2018 ONLY* Due to the IRS Data Retrieval Outage, the Department of Education is temporarily allowing schools to accept signed personal copies of 2015 Tax Returns (1040, 1040A, 1040EZ) in lieu of IRS Tax Return Transcripts for verification purposes, as long as conflicting information does not exist. (posted 6/23/17)

Special situations that require alternative or additional documentation:

  • Students/Parents who are married and filed separate federal tax returns
    • Submit a 2015 IRS Tax Return Transcript or a copy of the signed 2015 Federal Tax Return for parent and spouse or student and spouse.

  • Students/Parents whose marital status has changed after December 31
    • If separated or divorced, submit a 2015 IRS Tax Return Transcript or a copy of the signed 2015 Federal Tax Return AND copies of all 2015 W-2(s) and 2015 1099(s).
    • If married, submit a 2015  IRS Tax Return Transcript or a copy of the signed 2015 Federal Tax Return for parent and spouse or student and spouse.

  • Students/Parents who filed an amended federal tax return
    • Submit a copy of the 2015 IRS Tax Return Transcript or a copy of the signed 2015 Federal Tax Return AND a signed copy of the 2015 1040X.
    • If you indicated on FAFSA that you filed an amended return, but you didn’t, you will need to submit a 2015 IRS Tax Account Transcript to verify that an amended return was not filed (in addition to the 2015 IRS Tax Return Transcript or a copy of the signed 2015 Federal Tax Return).

  • Students/Parents who did not and will not file a Federal Tax Return
    • NEW for 2017-2018 - Submit Verification of Non-Filing from the IRS dated on or after October 1, 2016 that indicates a 2015 IRS income tax return was not filed with the IRS.
    • Submit copies of all 2015 W-2s.

  • Students/Parents who filed a foreign tax return
    • Submit a signed copy of the 2015 foreign tax return.
    • Contact the Student Financial Assistance Office for further guidance.

  • Students/Parents who were victims of tax administration identity theft
    • A victim of tax administration identity theft must contact the IRS at 1-800-908-4490. Upon authentication of the tax filer’s identity, the IRS will provide the Tax Return DataBase View (TRDBV) transcript. You must submit a copy of the TRDBV and a statement signed and dated by the tax filer indicating that he or she was a victim of IRS tax-related identity theft and that the IRS has been made aware of the tax-related identity theft.

  • Students/Parents who were granted a filing extension (beyond the October 15 extension deadline) by the IRS
    • Contact the Student Financial Assistance for further guidance.

IRS Tax Return Transcript

In cases where students/parents are unable to submit a signed copy of the 2015 Federal Tax Return or if there is conflicting information regarding the Federal Tax Return, then an IRS Tax Return Transcript must be requested directly from the IRS and submitted. It is important to request the IRS Tax Return Transcript not the IRS Tax Account Transcript. The Account Transcript does not contain all of the necessary information.

Generally it takes two to three weeks for the IRS Tax Return Transcript to be available, and eight to eleven weeks for paper IRS tax return filers.

  • To request the IRS Tax Return Transcript visit the IRS website. Pay attention to the year you are requesting. The 2016-2017 FAFSA and the 2017-2018 FAFSA are both using 2015 tax information so you will need to request the 2015 IRS Tax Return Transcript for either year in which you are completing verification.
  • Make sure that the student's name and USI student ID number (or Social Security Number if ID number unknown) are written on all pages.

Non-Filers

The Verification of Non-Filing Letter is proof from the IRS that you did not file a return. This documentation may be requested by sending a completed IRS 4506-T to the IRS. The 4506-T may be downloaded and printed online at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f4506t.pdf.

*NEW* Previously all non-filers were required to obtain Verification of Non-Filing from the IRS dated on or after October 1, 2016. The Department of Education is temporarily allowing schools to only require this documentation if conflicting information exists.

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