Understanding the Verification Process

Join our FAFSA webinar on January 13th!

Access 2014-15 FAFSA resources now!

Learn More »

If you have been notified by the FAFSA CPS (Central Processing System) that your FAFSA was selected for verification: please wait for communication from Cedarville regarding whether or not you need to complete verification with us. For further explanation of this specific situation, see #4 below.

Deadline for completing verification: There is no formal deadline; however, we encourage you to submit the required verification documents as soon as reasonably possible (see myfinancialaid; also see  #9 below).

NOTE: If you do not complete the verification process, you forfeit eligibility for federal student aid and other need-based aid.

1. What is verification?

Verification is a review process which documents select data elements of a student's FAFSA. Each year approximately 30% of FAFSAs filed across the nation are selected for verification. In this FAFSA review, the financial aid staff compares the FAFSA with information provided in the required verification documents, including IRS tax data. If discrepant information is discovered, Cedarville will update the FAFSA and send the corrected FAFSA to CPS for reprocessing. Additionally, financial aid awards will be recalculated using the updated FAFSA and its EFC calculation. 

Note: If you are selected for verification, you cannot receive any of your federal and need-based aid until the verification process is completed.

2. How are FAFSA records chosen for verification?

A student's FAFSA record can be selected based on:

  • verification selection criteria determined by Cedarville University each year (required as part of our participation in the US Department of Education's Quality Assurance Program) 
  • irregularities of data
  • random selection

3. What happens if I am selected?

Any student selected for verification is required to submit the appropriate documentation to validate the information provided on their FAFSA. Once all required documents are received, the financial aid staff will complete the verification review. Any discrepancies found during the verification review process will be corrected on the FAFSA and reprocessed through the FAFSA CPS. Additionally, the student's financial aid package will be recalculated using the updated FAFSA and its EFC calculation.

4. How will I be notified if my FAFSA record has been selected for verification?

Cedarville participates in the Quality Assurance Program, which is supervised by the US Department of Education. This program allows Cedarville to use our own verification selection criteria regarding FAFSA verification. Cedarville's financial aid office will notify students when their FAFSA is either ‘Waived from Verification’ or ‘Selected for Verification.’ This information is also communicated on the My Financial Aid website.

WAIVED:  The student’s FAFSA was initially 'Selected for Verification' by CPS; however, it was not selected by Cedarville’s criteria. In this situation, our office will notify the student that their FAFSA has been 'Waived from Verification' by Cedarville.

SELECTED:  The student’s FAFSA was 'Selected for Verification' by Cedarville as the FAFSA data met our selection criteria. Our office will notify this student that their FAFSA was 'Selected for Verification.'

We request that you wait to submit any verification documentation until you receive an official request for verification documents from the financial aid office.

Note: Prematurely sending verification documentation to the financial aid office may result in the FAFSA being selected for verification when otherwise you could have been WAIVED from this process.

5. What documentation will be required?

Generally, when selected, a verification worksheet and IRS tax information are required. Specific listing of required verification documents are available at MyFinancialAid.

6. Why should I use the IRS data retrieval tool?

The benefit of utilizing the IRS data retrieval tool is that is greatly simplifies and expedites the verification process.  By using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, you will not be required to submit a Federal Tax Transcript or copies of your Federal Tax returns to the financial aid office.

7. How do I use the IRS data retrieval tool?

Please refer to our IRS data retrieval tool instructional guide for more information.

8. How can I submit the required verification documents?

Documents can be submitted using any of the following options:

  1. E-mail: finaid@cedarville.edu (scan the document(s), save as a PDF, and send as an email attachment)
  2. Fax: (937)766-7639; Attn: Verification
  3. Mail: Financial Aid, 251 N. Main St., Cedarville, OH 45314

9. Is there a deadline for submitting and completing verification?

Those selected for verification should submit their required verification documents as soon as reasonably possible (preference is within 15 days of being selected, but this is simply a guideline, not a fixed deadline). If you do not complete verification, you may forfeit access to federal aid programs, as well as institutional need-based aid.

Note: If a student or their parents have a unique tax situation which requires filing for a tax extension, please notify our office.

10. Can I elect NOT to complete the verification process?

Yes, you can elect NOT to complete the verification process. However, making this decision means that you forfeit access to all federal aid, need-based state aid, and Cedarville's institutional need-based aid. All financial aid in these categories will be placed on hold.

Should this decision be reversed at a later time, then the verification review would proceed after all required documents were received. Once verification is successfully completed, all aid for which the student is still eligible would be reinstated.

11. What if I have questions about this process?

Contact the Financial Aid office via email or by phone (800-444-2433).