Student in the Library, Graduating Students, Students in the Classroom
Federal School Code 005753

Verification Policy

Students who submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) may be selected for review in a process called "verification". In this process, the Office of Financial Aid compares information provided on the FAFSA with tax forms (if requested) and other information. Federal law indicates that the Office of Financial Aid has the right to ask for this documentation before dispursing federal and state aid. All aid, including student loans, will not be finalized until verification has been completed and any corrections have been processed by the U.S. Department of Education.

The Office of Financial Aid will make any required corrections to the FAFSA based on the documentation provided. The student will receive an updated Student Aid Report (SAR) from the U.S. Department of Education which shows the corrections made. If these corrections change the studentís eligibility for aid, the student will also receive an updated award notice.

Required documentation

The documentation which is required to complete verification will be listed on the Student Requirements page on Ozone. Forms will indicate the specific year(s) for which information is being requested. To access Ozone:

  1. Log onto Ozone at https://ozone.owens.edu
  2. On the Financial Info tab, click the View Financial Aid Details link which is listed in the Financial Aid Summary section.
  3. Click on Student Requirements.

The student, his/her spouse, and his/her parents, as applicable, may be asked to provide some or all of the following information.

Identity and use of financial aid

  • Proof of identity.
  • Statement of educational purpose confirming that financial aid will only be used for educational expenses.

Completion of high school or equivalent

  • Proof of high school completion; or, proof of completion of a state-authorized equivalent (such as GED, HiSET, or TASC), homeschooling, or an associate's degree or higher.

Household members

  • Documentation of the names, ages, and college enrollment status of the individuals in the household.

SNAP (Food Stamps)

  • If the student, spouse, parents, or a member of the studentís or parentís household received SNAP benefits (Food Stamps) during applicable years, documentation from the agency providing the benefit may be requested.

Child support payments

  • If the student, spouse, or parent(s) paid child support in the prior year, a statement from that individual which certifies the amount of child support paid, the name of the person to whom child support was paid, and the name of the children for whom child support was paid. Documentation from the child support agency may be required at the discretion of the Office of Financial Aid.

Income information

  • For individuals who were required to file a federal income tax return, information from the IRS confirming federal income tax information for the prior year. Students and parents are highly encouraged to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool which is offered as part of the FAFSA in order to copy IRS information to the FAFSA. Individuals who choose not to, or are unable to, use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool must provide an IRS Tax Return Transcript of their federal income tax return. Individuals who use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool and then change information that is copied from the IRS must also provide an IRS Tax Return Transcript. Confirmation of eligibility to file under a particular filing status may be required. Copies of all the prior year W-2ís for the student, spouse, and/or parents may also be required. Click here for instructions on how to obtain a tax return transcript from the IRS.
  • For Individuals who have a rollover listed on their prior year federal tax return, a signed copy of their federal tax return showing it was a rollover or a copy of their 1099-R should be submitted, along with either the IRS Tax Return Transcript or successful transger using the IRS Data Retrival Tool.
  • Individuals who filed an amendment to their federal income tax return must provide (1.) a copy of the IRS Tax Return Transcript or a signed copy of the original tax return that was filed with the IRS, and (2.) a signed copy of the IRS Form 1040X Amended U.S. Individual Tax Return which has been filed with the IRS.
  • Individuals who filed a foreign income tax return must provide a signed copy of the foreign tax return and an English translation (if the return is not in English).
  • Individuals who have been granted a filing extension by the IRS must provide (1.) a copy of the IRS Form 4868 ďApplication for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax ReturnĒ or a copy of the IRS approval of an additional extension, (2.) a copy of all the prior year W-2ís, and (3.) a signed statement certifying any adjusted gross income and the federal income tax paid in the prior year from self-employment. If requested, a copy of the IRS Tax Return Transcript showing that the return was filed must be provided by the extension deadline, or the verification deadline, whichever is earlier.
  • Individuals who did not file a prior year federal tax return because they were not required to do so must provide copies of all prior year W-2ís, a signed statement certifying that they have not filed and are not required to file, and a listing of the sources and amounts of income earned from work that are not on the W-2ís. Individuals may be required to provide confirmation of non-filing from the IRS.
  • Verification of other untaxed income that must be reported on the FAFSA.
  • Confirmation of a familyís ability to provide sufficient financial support for the number of household family members reported.
  • Documentation of a studentís ability to provide more than 50% of the financial support for a dependent.
  • Documentation to clarify income and adjustments to income as reported on the FAFSA.

Asset information

  • Documentation to confirm the value of assets owned or partially-owned by the student, spouse, or parent(s), including cash, savings, checking, investments, businesses, and investment farms.

Other information

  • Additional documentation as requested by the Office of Financial Aid. This includes, but is not limited to documentation to confirm information provided on the FAFSA; information provided on application materials or forms; or information provided verbally or in writing to college faculty or staff.

Students should contact Oserve for assistance with verification requirements if they are unable to provide the required documentation due to one or more of the following situations:

For dependent students:

  • The parents are residing in a country other than the United States and cannot be contacted by normal means of communication.
  • Both of the studentís parents are mentally incapacitated.

For independent students who are married:

  • The spouse is deceased.
  • The spouse is mentally incapacitated.

For student, spouse, or parents:

  • The student, spouse, or parents are victims of IRS identity theft.

Checking the status of verification

Students can check the status of their verification on Ozone.

  1. Log onto Ozone at https://ozone.owens.edu
  2. From the Financial Info tab, click the View Financial Aid Details link which is listed in the Financial Aid Summary section.
  3. Click on Student Requirements.

On the Student Requirements page, the requested verification items will be listed. Below is a listing of what each status means:

Received, not yet reviewed: Your verification materials have not been reviewed. They are generally reviewed within two weeks after being submitted. Allow additional processing time near the beginning of each semester.

Incomplete: Information that is required for your verification is missing. Please review your Active Messages on Ozone or contact Oserve.

Completed: Your verification has been completed.

Deadlines

In order to ensure that the student's verification is complete by the time first disbursements occur, all requested documentation should be submitted to Oserve as soon as possible. Semester priority deadlines are listed on each of the verification forms.

Unless specified below, you must complete verification within 120 days of your last date of attendance, or the federal deadline, whichever is earlier. However, if you do not complete verification during the semester you are enrolled, your eligibility for certain aid may be affected.

The following programs have earlier verification deadlines.

  • For state grants which require verification, verification must be completed during the semester.
  • For Federal Work Study, verification must be completed prior to the 60th day of the semester in which the student is receiving Federal Work Study funds.
  • For all other aid, your verification must be completed within 120 days of your last date of attendance, or the end of the semester, whichever is earlier.

Students who do not complete verification within the required deadlines will not qualify for federal aid, certain state grants, and certain college grants. Federal and state aid funds will not be disbursed, and refunds, if any, will not be available until verification is completed and corrections (if necessary) have been processed and sent to the college from the U.S. Department of Education.

Students who are selected for verification after financial aid disbursements have been made will receive a written notice containing a deadline to submit documents, which is approximately 30 days after the date of the letter. If documents are not submitted by the deadline, the student will be ineligible for the grant aid which was received. If the grant aid is not repaid, the student will be considered to have an overpayment and will become ineligible for all federal financial aid at any school.

Students whose verification was completed based on a tax extension, but do not submit a final IRS Tax Return Transcript by the deadline, if requested, will forfeit their financial aid and owe funds back to the college. If the student received grant aid which is not repaid, the student will be considered to have an overpayment and will become ineligible for all federal financial aid at any school.

Required Referral

The Office of Financial Aid is required by federal regulations to refer students to the U.S. Department of Educationís Office of Inspector General if there is evidence of potential fraud or other criminal misconduct in connection with the studentís application, including but not limited to false claims of independent student status, false claims of citizenship, use of false identities, forgery of signatures, and false statements of income.




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